So much for the attempt to keep on top of blogging this year!
The last couple of weeks although eventful have just been mostly about getting back into the swing of university term again. It’s very strange to be back when most of the exchange students that I became friends with last semester have left. I’d always assumed that staying for a year makes so much more sense as you are just settling down after those 5 months, but I hadn’t appreciated the level of change that can occur around you even if you are staying in the same place.
I’ve nearly been away from England for 6 months now and despite the fact I’m not going home until July and I’m still in Singapore until May it feels very much like a countdown has begun on my time here and I’m discovering that I’m not ready to leave. I believe I’ve been incredibly lucky to not feel homesick very much at all, and although I love England and all the people who I get to see when I go home, I think I’d much rather stay here. It’s both sad and incredible to realise that you don’t need to be secure in the bubble that your used to, even in the same country or culture, to feel like you are at home. The feeling of being home is all to do about who you surround yourself with.
Since semester started again I have spent a large amount of time with the Lifeguard Corps (LGC) in training sessions and bonding camps, and although they probably don’t realise, they are some of the people that I am closest to in Singapore. It’s quite a weird feeling to know that they are some of the closest friends you have for thousands of miles around, and yet to them you are one of hundreds. Despite that, they have been amazingly inclusive. The only real constant events in my life are Monday and Wednesday training sessions!
It’s amazing to be let into the real culture of Singapore by locals, it’s the sort of thing you don’t get to experience very often as there is normally such a wide mix of nationalities that it gets diluted a little! But here I’m the only foreigner and when I’m out with them as a group I get a lot of weird looks, I can sense people wondering what that white girl is doing with them.
Bonding camp number one was a two day event, 1st day spent in NTU pool practising competition events, a night in a chalet with a BBQ dinner (BBQing in January still seems odd) and the second day on Sentosa learning beach comp events! Aside from the sunburn and aches from jumping on and off the rescue boards it was an amazing couple of days.
Bonding camp II was less about training and more about the fun! Yesterday 11 of us went to a trampoline park and bounced and attempted to flip around for an hour which was really fun and sweaty. Of course, this had to be followed with a dinner of Chilli crab and mantou for dinner, then Bingsu for supper and bean-curd for dessert!!!
Thanks to all these amazing people I feel like I’m seeing the real Singapore, and it’s made the last 6 months so much more enjoyable. I’m sure that there will be many more memories made before I leave in 4 months time! And they’ve given me a very easy excuse to come back!