Journey to the West
The term at NIE has started, and I now have to lug myself daily to the western almost-Malaysia part of the island. These four weeks are quite light for most of the other teacher-trainees, but because all student doing English Language are required to do extra lessons, plus I didn’t do any Physics in university (thus necessitating supplementary classes as well), I’ve got a pretty busy schedule already, as far as timetables go.
One of the few things I like about the place is the NTU food court. As with all campus eateries, it’s pretty cheap (it sells things at prices comparable to commercial hawker centre food), it’s relatively tasty, and best of all – it’s air-conditioned! I particularly like that Ayam Panggang is available here, though not as tasty as Riverside‘s, it still makes for a pretty good lunch option. The NIE canteen sells cheaper food, though sacrificing comfort and variety in the process.
I actually first saw the NIE Library bus stop about 4 years ago. I was on my SISPEC course (I think), and we’d come to the area for live firing of support weapons. Funnily enough the driver didn’t know where to pick us up after the shooting, so to help give the driver a more easily recognisable landmark, we all marched to this very bus stop in the middle of the night.
It remains a rather vivid memory in my head – tired from the day of waiting my turn to fire the M203 (among other things), tired of being marched around like little ants, and tired of the whole army experience in general, it was really bittersweet to be just looking at the compound I knew I would one day be studying in. Fastforward 4 years, and here I am today, at last.
I can’t remember what exactly was on my mind as we stood at the bus stop waiting for our transport to bring us back to Pulau Tekong, but as I stood there today waiting for the bus to come, I was just glad to have made it so far. I don’t expect my course here to be particularly exciting, but it’s a definite step in the direction I want to be headed toward, and no matter how exactly it turns out, I’m just grateful to be able to push off into the road ahead.