Singapore Adventure

Monday, October 03, 2005

by venitha

emergency all-hands meeting @ 4pm

From his office in Taipei, Jim IM's me at work in Yishun. Blasé an attitude as I try to maintain regarding HP's stranglehold on my life these days, excitement like this obviously grabs my attention and leaves me wanting to shout Uncle.

Dedicated employee that I am, however, I manage to put the impending announcement out of my mind until 4, when I get some hot chocolate - it is downright cold at work - and then return to my desk to sit and to sip and to wait.

4:05. I look at the picture of Maggie on my short cube wall. Undoubtedly, this isn't healthy, but I can't resist such a reminder of her cute sweetness. Or is it her sweet cuteness? Believe it or not, Jim and I have actually discussed and argued about whether sweetness or cuteness is her most defining quality. I can't remember now which side I was on, but I'm certain I was right.

4:07. Next to Maggie is a recent shot of Jake, my youngest nephew, who has surely gained 20, no 30, pounds since I saw him last. You think I'm kidding, but this adorable eight-month-old is clearly the reincarnation of Reggie White and will therefore someday achieve the seemingly impossible feat of turning my father into a Packer fan. How old, and how big, will Jake be when I see him next?

4:11. In my head resonates this overpowering thought: Please let them send us home. It's completely emotional, but, oh, how I yearn to be rescued! And just in time to make my heavenly annual October pilgrimage to the Z-- Spa, my beloved little sister's home in Milwaukee. Now featuring Jake! From there, I could head back to Colorado and hole up with Maggie in our condo in Winter Park, licking four months of wounds and making snow angels for the entire ski season.

4:13. My rational side, and I do have one, tells me I'm through the hard stuff here: moving, setting up a home, stifling the irritation at two months, and conquering the depression at three. I've survived the first month (!) of work and its accompanying stress of not knowing anyone, not knowing what I'm doing, not knowing why I'm here. I've adjusted to the weather. Well, I'll probably never really adjust to the weather, but still. And, ultimately, there is the inescapable fact that going home now would be nearly as hard as coming here in the first place, not least of all because it would likely mean that Jim, along with a good number of people I care about in Ft Collins, no longer has a job.

4:15. I look at Maggie's sweet face - today I'm vociferously on the side of sweet over cute - and Jake's devilish grin, and I can't help it. Please, God, let them send us home.

A flash on my computer screen catches my eye; Jim's back on-line.

meeting's over

I hold my breath while the window tells me he is typing. Jim hits enter from across the South China Sea, and my fate is sealed.

false alarm