Friday, July 27, 2012

of death and taxes

They say there are 2 things which are certain in life : death and taxes. How true.

Had to go back and forth my ex-company's payroll dept and the tax dept to clear any outstanding tax issues before they can release my last salary. A couple who just migrated to Canada told me you would not be allowed to leave the country if not done properly.

Another grrl who went to Singapore managed to get it done even after she left the country. All I hoped for was that they don't make a fuss about any of the items I claimed rebate for (which was not much anyways), and allowed me to receive the refunds.

It's still not settled yet, still have to drop by the office tomorrow, apparently the PCB from the company was not received by the tax dept for a couple of the months, so looks like I won't get my refund that soon.

Oh well, at least there's a bit of relief there, that can cover the laptop I just bought >.<

I'm not even migrating, but the things on my to-do list make it look like I am! I'm tired of having to explain why these 2 weeks have been so busy for me that I have yet to start packing. Some things in life just have to be experienced to be understood :)

Thursday, July 19, 2012

uprooting again?

can't believe i did it. took up a new job offer, tendered, said my goodbyes, and returned all the company assets. there's a mixed feelings all welled up inside of me. don't know which to process, and in which sequence.

there's just too little time to sort out so many things; i'm supposed to start at my new role in a new country in exactly 2 weeks' time! that means i'm supposed to fly next weekend. if all goes well.

didn't manage to share about it since i wasn't even sure it would happen. didn't want to jinx my chances! i'd rather leave quietly, then announce my safe arrival once i'm there. that will be the shocking news.

most of my colleagues just know i'm leaving, but not aware i'm leaving the country too. it's hard to share these things out. would be quite embarrassing if it doesn't happen!

so, if you don't hear from me till then, you can safely assume i'm going around ticking off the items on my to-do list. and while i'm at it, there are a few things i'm giving away, spring cleaning of sorts. let me know if you know anyone who would appreciate some IT equipment (desktop PC, laptop, peripherals), or household items (clothes, paints, etc).

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

journey into jordan : petra p2

These stringed camels reminded me of the stuffed elephants that Kedar got for me from India. They were also wrapped in multi-coloured cloth and hung on a long string. Maybe I should find these stringed animals and make a collection, have them hanged on my door as a curtain of sorts!

This native Jordanian girl was trying to show her handicraft to some tourists. I'm impressed how even though they are poor, the locals never beg or hassle you for money. They will sit there with their wares and crafts, but mostly never even persuade you to buy.

Though once when it was about to rain, there was a Bedouin girl (assumed she was one since they were found in Petra, and the nearest town seemed catered to more well-off locals) who asked if I could give her something. I wasn't sure if she was asking for money, but when I asked if she'd like some bread I had packed, she seemed appreciative for it.

I later realised maybe they don't get to eat properly, as she devoured the bread in no time. Later on as I saw more local kids I decided to keep some of my breakfast so that I can give them away.

I have never walked nor hiked this much in my life before! Just two days of Petra have made me wish I was living in Japan when I made the trip. The few years of walking and cycling in Japan have made hitchhiking in Europe almost a breeze. 

Either that, or age is catching up on me!

I would have wanted to support the local craftsman especially those who don't insist you purchase their products, if not for the fact that these were made of glass and Petra was only the 2nd stop, and I didn't know if I could stuff these into my luggage.

However, much later, at my last stop in Amman, a CS-er got me one of these as a souvenir.

I enjoyed marvelling at the fascinating rock formations sculpted over the decades, if not centuries by wind, water and natural elements. Truly God's creations never cease to awe.

So we took the Petra by Night tour which seemed to build up a lot of hype with people queueing up to buy tickets, then the long walk through the Siq with only candles and stars to light our way. The walk ends at the magnificent Treasury where we sat down to enjoy local music and storytelling.

The surrounding is such that microphone or modern audio equipment is not necessary as the sound bounces off the high walls. Could have been better, since the long walk made us more expectant! Still, for those who are not tired out by the day's hike could enjoy the haunting Bedouin music, imagining what life must have been centuries ago.

Monday, July 02, 2012

journey into jordan : petra p1

Words can't even begin to describe what I saw and experience in Petra. All I could think of before going to Jordan was that I had to watch Indiana Jone's movie and bolster myself with some background knowledge of the significance of this place, having read reference to it from the "Left Behind" series.