This has been a tumultuous year with the General Election and then after the Elected President. Most treated EP as platform for GE2, clamouring for more changes. Some even thought the PM reports to the supposedly ‘executive President’, after all latter is paid higher (I don’t understand as well). Thankfully, sanity sets in. Otherwise, you may have an EP sparring the PM every other day thinking he is boss.
This is the year Singaporeans expressed their loudest displeasure through the ballot box. Sure, housing, transport, immigration were some valid key gripes. However, we should also reflect back and, on balance, count on the blessings for the positive things on this tiny red dot called home. Here goes:
* we should be thankful for no tsunami. think Japan.
* we should be thankful for no earthquake. think Christchurch, Japan and Turkey more recently.
* we should be thankful for no nuclear plants near us (it’s a matter of time!). think Fukushima, Japan.
* we should be thankful for no spring, only hot or wet. think Tunisia, Egypt, Libya.
* we should be thankful for no outbreak of health related disease. think E Coli in Germany, Spain and Europe.
* we should be thankful for no major floods. think Brisbane and Thailand and it makes our local floods like bath tubs.
* we should be thankful for no major industrial accident. think Zhejiang, China.
* we should be thankful for no strikes. think Qantas, Australia and now UK.
In addition, thank goodness for:
* hawker centres selling affordable food.
* rain, which brings life compared to drought in many parts of the world.
* PUB for clean drinking water. if only they stop publishing those suicide cases at Bedok reservoir!
* green, parks, park connectors, trees and soon Marina Gardens by the Bay.
* keeping pollution in check, providing accurate weather forecast (very important for golfers and cyclists!).
* efficient trains and good buses.
(I spent 1 month riding our MRT and buses. they are good)
* safe environment, rule of law and zero tolerance on drugs.
* multiple education pathways.
* polyclinics and public hospitals to keep healthcare cost in check.
* IR for bringing in world class entertainment, exhibitions. they took away my chauffeured bus to RWS!
* the SG dollar that we can hold our own.
* And the many other services that we take for granted because they work!
So while we may be unhappy with a few things, let’s be reminded:
“The happiest people don’t necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the best of everything they have”.
And as for the recalcitrant complainer, practice makes perfect good!
“Complainers and successful people have all practised to be what they are good at. So if you keep practising complaining, you will always complain. If you practise compassion, generosity, patience, working hard and have a bigger vision, you will become better at it with time because you will create the causes to become better”. Tsem Tulku Rinpoche
And if you are still unhappy about some of the short comings of the HP Alumni, the right thing to do is to step forward, volunteer your services, and act upon to make a difference.
May 2012 brings on a happier year to all and may peace be with you.
Han Jok Kwang
President, HP Alumni