I write this from my couch. Not the couch I’m sitting in at a hotel or an airport or my parents house. My couch. It’s brown and a bit saggy, it’s got a few stains – beer and hydrolyte are two that are immediately identifiable. But it is by far the most comfortable couch in the world. All other couches should kneel at the feet of this majestic specimen. But this isn’t about my couch. It’s more about the fact that my couch is now sitting in my new apartment in Singapore.
Our stuff has arrived and is in the process of being unpacked. It’s very strange to look around and see our wooden giraffes from South Africa, our kava bowl from Fiji and our groaning bookcase from Ikea. Looking to the right though, you’re reminded where you are: you’re sitting about 5 metres away from your neighbour’s lounge room, just across the courtyard. Their maid is hanging washing on their balcony, it’s so close you can say hello to her without raising your voice. You can hear the Chinese family next door either having a heated domestic or a loud conversation, it’s difficult to tell. This is high density living, in Singapore.
My cat embodies the feeling the best: she’s spent the last six hours sprinting from one room to the other with her ears back. She looks manic but then suddenly comes to a stop to jump up and sit on her blanket on the couch, or bite my toes while I’m trying to sleep. It feels as though we’ve been manically rushing around, house hunting, moving and generally getting settled, with a few brief pauses to do normal things like cook dinner and watch TV. Now it’s time for everything to slow down and for us to get on with living, really living, here in Singapore. Home sweet home.
Note: At the time of posting, it has all become too much for Tippy the cat. She is currently wedged behind a wardrobe. She might be stuck.