Tuesday, August 09, 2016

A major shift.... life story

Hello everyone. Time certainly flies. The last post was nearly 4 years ago. Ridiculous amount of days has passed since I last sat for hours at the sewing machine churning out yummy handmade purses and bags. (actual time - 6 years ago) To say I miss those days is a terrible understatement. How is everyone been holding up? Its strange but it almost feels like a lifetime ago. I've always wanted to write but the motivation eludes me.

What have I been doing you ask? Climbing the corporate ladder.

I lived and breathed florspace for 4 years and have had truly amazing time. I'll always remember those days fondly. In real life, I was also doing a business / finance degree during that time. When I graduated, I thought, maybe its time to live like an adult. I also wanted to prove that I could attain an accountant title. That was when I halted florspace. It wasn't as easy as you have a degree, you're automatically an accountant. I started out at a major corporation as something like an assistant executive manning data entry and running payments. I met a whole bunch of amazing people, learnt a lot about the corporate world and yes, its cruel, but I had the privilege of amazing seniors and bosses who were nice to me. I was lucky. But the department had to wind up so I moved on. This time, I got a job as a payable accountant at another large IT company. Almost there, I thought. The environment was very very tough. I worked very long hours but had opportunities to travel and train. I loved it but it was literally killing me. I switched again to a smaller setup, where I was finally an Accountant. Nothing else. I oversaw operations from the ground, set up new systems and trained people. Loved it. I was where I wanted to be in 5 years. I had the name cards to prove it.

I wasn't happy. My hair was turning white and thinning so quickly, I was deathly afraid of dying it so frequently. I had bad skin; pimples popped up daily to say hello. I was angry, angry at anyone and anything. My parents felt I was being a jerk. I could pay for a lot. Fancy dinners, brunches at hip places, expensive coffee, vacations and above all, my terrible addiction of ridiculously expensive bags. They weren't IT bags to me, they represented the quality and the scent of leather I had no time nor patience to produce. I didn't just go for the A Wang, Proenza Schouler, Chloe or Mulberry, I had a preference for Chanel and Hermes. (Sorry Vuitton, but you disappointed me a number of times, I stopped believing in you.) I picked up a Fuchsia Michael Kors tote at some outlet in San Francisco during a company training trip, used it to death and threw it around on the ground, much to my colleague's horror. I had a wardrobe of heels and dresses like they were my uniform. I mainly wore cardigans and a fit/flare type dress. On days I had to look professional, it was a slim figure hugging black dress with heels. I click-clacked my way around the CBD, convincing myself I belonged there. I spent after hours mulling over work and online shopping. Or gym. Yes, those expensive gym memberships. Ok I won't rant on that since they did help me get a wee bit leaner and healthier. But all that goes down the drain when I got home and sat down in front of my computer, binge watch american TV and ate potato chips. That was a secret shame. My weight would steadily climb once I got lazy to actually go to the gym. I made myself happy by buying something or hitting a new cafe / cupcake joint. Oh I had no idea my life was spiralling. You might read this and tell me, what are you complaining about? That's normal, that's life. That was what everyone was telling me. You gotta work, gotta pace yourself or you'll burnout. But how does one pace oneself? If you're tasked to do something, you do it. In return, I got badly thinning hair, bad skin, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and I got fat.

Early December 2015, other half, now my fiance, got a job at a university in Brisbane, Australia. I remembered he had a very early skype interview. I had to go to work. Mom and Dad was free that day so we went out for breakfast and they drove me to work. I love being in the backseat of my parents car. Happiest days of my childhood. Fiance called me and say, "I got the job. Let's go to Brisbane. Its time to change". That was a major turning point. It wasn't easy for him to get a job in this day and age. He had been trying for a number of years to get a permanent position and we were living apart, for a total of 9 years actually. He went back to Singapore last July and thank god he didn't have to stay long. He does not like the place. Even though I was happy to have him around, I was still exasperated and angry most of the time as I was still working and having to deal with difficulties. I think he knew he had to get us out.

My Christmas present last year was a copy of his contract from the University. It suddenly felt real. We were going to move. We had a vacation to Hong Kong planned for mid January (amazing trip!) so after we came back, within a week, he packed up, shipped the boxes and he was gone as they wanted him there asap. I was left with a bit of gaping hole. He left the decision on whether to move, or when to move over, to me. I gave it a bit of thought and started packing. I promised my aging parents I would call often and visit yearly. I gave notice to work, had a good replacement, an lovely send off. With more packing, throwing and donating, I was clear to ship. I booked the tickets and by mid-May, I was in Brisbane.

I'm not unfamiliar with living in Australia. I spent 3.5 years in Sydney. I loved Sydney. But when I came here, fiance told me, you're gonna feel like someone took all of Sydney, dumped it into a bag and poured it all out like a child. He wasn't wrong. Queensland is much larger piece than Sydney. Even the city feels more spreaded out. Girl friend told me, we need to drive here. But I've decided to save on the transport since we're not heading out every day. Public transport here is rather expensive, same with rent and utilities. We're lucky to be slightly higher up in an apartment building with amazing views of sunrise and sunsets, but we can't avoid the flies and occasional cockroach. Eww. Oh well. We're lucky the city mall is 15 mins away and the museums are also a hop and skip away. Its been rather fun so far. Fiance says I've got less to be mad about now, save for the bills. 

I've been receiving convos / emails over the years about whether I'll be making more of a wallet or bag and I just want to give a shout out to you amazing people. You make me wanna come back! So I guess the big question is will florspace be up soon? Well, the short answer is yes, the long answer is well....not-so-soon. I want to research on better designs and trials before rolling anything out. You know me. I want the quality before quantity. Not to mention the postage costs here seems much higher than back in Singapore. We'll see.

So yeah, that was my story. To be continued with more observations and quirks of Brissy.
Stay safe and happy.

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