Saturday, January 10, 2009
Rush Hour Weekend
I look forward to weekends because the pace of life slows down for at least two days before the whole mad cycle starts all over again at work... in life here.
Today was exceptional. It was a mad rush for the most part of the day but the weekend life as I know it slowly crepe in towards the evening. The day was nevertheless full of wonderful events all the way tonight...
It started with an early morning wake-up call for breakfast. Then all three of us made a rush to Sonny's new religious school for first year students' Parents & Students Orientation at YKI Changi Road.
The YKI or Young Khulafa's Institute is a weekend Madrasah of sorts under FMSA or Fellowship of Muslim Students Association umbrella.
This private institution to learning Islamic religion is regulated and registered under MUIS - a government's branch for Muslim Affairs in Singapore.
Since Sonny has now reached the age of young adulthood, Wifey and I felt that he has more than old enough to embrace the knowledge of Islamic teachings to be a whole, responsible human being who strives to be successful in life with God's blessings. A practicing Muslim.
Started at 10:30AM, there were lots of parents, mostly English speaking parents who, just like us were drawn by the lessons taught in English rather than the traditional Malay language.
There is a new generation of young Malay children in Singapore who mostly converse in English at home and in school replacing their mother tongue language. Sonny is no exception.
Coming from English educated parents, young children now come from English-speaking families. They loose the articulation of the Malay language and have nowadays regard it has one of the subjects in school to pass exams in, unfortunately.
All the religious classes that Sonny ever attended previously since he was small were stopped short when he kept complaining of not able to under each lessons as those were conducted in Malay.
So it is heartening that this institution conducts all lessons in English with contemporary approach in its lessons and curriculum, understanding the youth psyche while engaging them in modern times and settings.
So it is a impressive to know that all the religious teachers there are all qualified and registered under MUIS, licensed to teach the mainstream Islamic religion. These are the teachers who have excelled both in circular academics as well as religious universities from Egypt and Malaysia.
The orientation ended promptly two hours later. It left us rushing to grab some lunch before we zipped-off to our next appointment that was suppose to start at 1:30PM.
We even had to give the DSP event at Sonny school at 2:00PM, a miss. DSP group was meeting the new Secondary One parents and inviting them to join the group for the school.
Sonny changed into his Dunman Secondary School uniform once we reached home and we rushed to attend an MOE's Edusave Scholarship and Merit Award Ceremony for being top 10% in the east zone for good exam results for Secondary One level.
This year, the whole multipurpose hall at the community centre was packed with students with only standing room for parents at the sides and back of the hall. This year, the government was giving out more bursary awards for academic excellence as well as non-academic achievements like sports.
Fortunately, as each row of pupils queued to receive their awards from Minister for Tampines GRO Mr. Sin Boon Ann, respective parents were allowed to go right in front of the stage to take photos of their child's special moment.
The whole event was over in one hour. There was another session for another group of children at 4:00PM. The government is really helping the people in this challenging financial times.
Sonny was happy to receive S$300.00 for his hard work last year. He accumulated S$800.00 in total so far for his savings since the new year since getting some bonus money from me from my 13th month AWS.
Our day was then free for us to do whatever we wanted as a family.
Predictable as we are, we left for Changi Beach Park for dinner celebration out at the hawker centre and then just relaxing at the beach on a mat to enjoy the fresh air and the happy vibes there.
Wifey and I as always, could not help ourselves but be children for a few moments playing on the sea-saw and swings. Being children is so much fun... but the crackling of the bones reminded us that our hearts were willing, but not these old bodies.
We left the beach at 8:00PM. Not knowing there was a night market at the village near Changi Beach Hotel, we were already in the cab before we realized it. It would have been fun to be at the market than coming back home while the night was still young.
Young... it sure is good to be young, especially on a Saturday night.