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Friday, 2 August 2013

I've gone full circle after 30 years

I've just updated my blogger profile.

It now reads: currently on sabbatical from full-time work.

Tomorrow I will start a new phase after 19 months of bumming around.

I decided to go back to work during the weekends!

So it will be 2 days work; 5 days rest starting tomorrow.

Life is funny.

I started my first sales assistant job working at Metro Orchard - now it's replaced by DFS. 

For younger readers, it's the building opposite the overhead bridge at Far East Plaza. Once upon a time, that Far East Plaza area was hip.  And further down next to Metro Orchard was Tropicana - Singapore's first topless cabaret! OK, I was too young and too poor to have gone in...

I know, hard to believe. Just ask your older siblings or parents.

Guess what? After 30 years, I've gone full circle and will go back as a sales assistant on the selling floor!

I've worked almost the whole stretch of Orchard Road.

Montgomery Ward was at Palai Renaissance Building (next to the Thai embassy), Metro Orchard at Scotts Road, Robinsons at Centrepoint.

This new weekend job will be at a stretch of Orchard Road that I've not worked before. 

I am not ashamed of my new job or company. But they have a social media policy that I've signed into. So it will be radio silence on my place of work.   

If you die die must know, just email me and I will tell you. 

And one more thing. Don't ask me for discount! I can't and won't give you. LOL!

I just realised one thing. I'm no sure whether it's part of financial freedom; but I know I will not starve in Singapore. 

I have the skillsets and more importantly, the willingness to work in the service industry.

Many complain about poor service; but not many would want to work in the service industry themselves.

How's that for low competition and high demand? 

Looking forward to see how much I've developed as a person. I'll be taking directions from youngsters half my age. 

And abuses from customers looking for someone to vent their anger? 

Nah! With my sunny smile, who would want to hurt me?

"How can I help you sir?"

"My name is Jared. Feel free to look around. If you need assistance, just let me know."



  1. Dear SMOL,

    Wishing you all the best in your new "career".
    Ever since I chanced on your site, I have been enjoying your posts. Keep them coming :)

    1. Hello wk,

      Thanks for your well wishes!

      It's nice to hear from readers. Especially when you are entertained ;)

      I feel like a student taking a vacation job all over again. Man it's nice to be young-at-heart!

  2. Haha! Hey Jared, congrats and perhaps I'll try to swing by sometime (I'll email you). I guess we all come full circle eh? Me with my part-time...then cartoons...then back to work...then starting out on my own...then? Who knows. But yeah, I'm confident you won't starve. I totally understand when you say that few would serve and most would complain. But you - you'll do well. I'm confident of that. Because of your acceptance of yourself. And with peace!



    1. Ronian,

      Yes! Do that. But give me a few weeks to settle down first.

      How boring life would be if it's exactly what we've planned ;)

      You would not be on your own now if you had not taken the first step from full-time to part-time and cartoons.

      Steve Jobs is a smart man.

      It only makes sense looking back and connecting the dots. But looking forward? It's all randomness.

      Today first day of work!

      Future? Own my own store? Return to full-time samurai? Back to ronin bum? Fall madly in love and be a house-husband?

      I am water. I flow towards the beating of my heart :)

  3. Rest 5 days and work 2 days.

    Double charge your energy.

    We are expecting super service after damn good rest.


    1. CW,

      You bet!

      Compared to my time selling sofas at IMM building for Melandas, this is a walk in the park.

      At Melandas, I worked from 10 am to 9pm, 5 days a week. I've paid my dues ;)

      I now only work 8 hours shift. It's heavenly for retail sales!

      But then, at Melandas can rest at the sofas. This job is like Robinsons and Metro - stand whole day kind.

      Legs a bit sore...

      I no spring chicken now. LOL!

  4. Hi SMOL,

    Hope your first day of work went well.

    The long hours of standing must be tiring. But of course the consolation is, you have 5 days to 'recuperate'. :D

    With your great spirit, I'm sure you will find meaning and happiness in your new endeavour.

    Thank you Sir, for going back to support the service industry! *Salute*


    1. Endrene,

      Thanks! One nice lady customer thanked me for my service today. I still got it!

      Just came back home from the afternoon shift.

      Knocked-off at 10:00 pm.

      It was nostalgic. It's a long time since I've gone home from work in the cool of the night. Taking the near empty bus home, stopping by the late night hawkers along the way for supper...

      Unfortunately, tonight I took the MRT and it's crowded and noisy... Some things have changed! LOL!

      One good thing shall come out from my standing all day.

      It will firm up my shapely legs and derriere. I think my future "jie jie" will appreciate that!

  5. Hi SMOL,

    It has been quite a few years since I did retail but I still help out from time to time. It is definitely more demanding on the legs now. Also, when I talk too much, I get a headache. Doesn't help that I am asthmatic. Get a bit breathless too.

    Anyway, you seem sturdier than I am and I am sure you will rise to the occasion! Think clean! ;p

    You came back so late and must be so tired and still left a comment for me in my latest blog post. Very touched. Kamsiah. :)

    1. AK,

      Hey! My "breathe" comment has taken any layer of meaning ;)

      While doing meditation, only then am I aware of my breathing.

      Funny come to think of it. We are not conscious of breathing in our daily lives. And yet, all of us are here because of taking one breath at a time.

      Nothing more; nothing less.

      (Would anyone sell their next breath for a million dollars?)

      Breathe, young mountain.

      The volcano has erupted, now the mountain has grown taller.

      (I good with imagery or what? Tell your nieces and nephews not to drop Literature!)

  6. Congratulations!
    You have found the reason to force yourself to move more since your sabbatical leave.
    The more we move our backsides, the better, healthier lives we live. "Retirees" who have nothing to do really moves very little compare when they were working. That's one of the main reason their health deteriorate very fast. (And die very fast too, i suppose). IMO.
    How much is your belly width now?
    My from 29 to 35 cm now. Trying very hard to win in "Battle of the Bulge" throughout life. i live to eat sometimes; that's why i am losing in the battle, i think
    As we get older and older, we have to watch out how much we are moving our body per day; just to stay healthy.

    1. Thanks temperament!

      I've decided I needed some alternative human interactions beyond my reduced circle of friends.

      It's also a great opportunity to practice my bazaar Malay with the customers ;)

      Yes, we need to move our body and mind least we get senile too soon...

      Before NS, my waist was 27 - I under weight for my height.

      Now my waist has ballooned to 34 and slightly overweight :(

      I am more positive - I've not won any battles yet! LOL!

      This little "yet" keeps me moving forward :)

  7. "yes sir, what can i help?"
    "the price are stated there, see for yourself, all non negotiable"
    "don't ask me about quality, you should have done your homework before you come here"
    "hey, don't buy if you don't know what you are buying, and don't block the way please, there are other suckers wanted to see!"

    how, i can or not?

    1. coconut,

      Of course can!

      Provided you are selling drugs, alcohol, gambling, or sex.

      Must get into the role: "KNN what you want? Faster decide! No discount one lah! Come to this place don't xia suay yourself. What? Still thinking? Can step outside or not? Xia yi wei!"

      I wonder what's it like to work around Geyland area? I missed my only chance to work there when after NS, one of my NS mates asked me whether interested to join him in selling durians there as partners.

      Sadly, at that time, I was weak. Needed air-con to work...
      And dare not strike out on our own :(

    2. ya ya, thats what i used to say when i "operate" in geylang area, but i retire from there many years ago, no sure who's in charge now haha. we call it entertainment business, need license one. what sex or drugs.

      no wonder i ended up trading/gambling, i practically have no other alternatives except sitting at home.

      "hey! want to hire me?" thats how we apply for job there haha

    3. coconut,

      Ah! You have an interesting past!

      Sure can make into movie one!

      From the lorongs of Geyland to the cyber world of hardcore trading ;)

    4. i'm the lotus within the mud, gangster left, gangster right, gangster up and down, no way to be in the business without them! but i'm not one of them, never even cross my mind.

      one incident where i was drinking with 3 from toa payoh, a loner who was a bit drunk, came to our table mumbling something where we don't understand, one of them ask that drunken to shut up but he persist, and without warning, that guy just stood up and give that drunken a punch to the head, he fell. all of us got to catch hold of him before he do any real damage. after calm down we just continue to drink as though there was nothing happened and that poor guy who was punched got to appologise to us (for interupting??).


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