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Strong Eagle
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Postby Strong Eagle » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 10:36 am

the lynx wrote:
Brah wrote:Happened upon this thread and thought it would be good to hear from the two of you who left occasionally to see how once you're distanced from here how it a) feels to be away and b) how it feels to be back, once settled in.

I think anyone living overseas for an extended time goes through a few phases upon return (I wouldn't know as I have yet to do it, but feel my day is coming soon) - much like those phases of arriving in a new country.

Plus it's been a year or so since SE left, that's enough time to have it all sink in.


Yeah it is nice to read I'm-back-home reports from RobSg and FaeLLe. Waiting for the rest to do so.


I've been back home for a year and a couple of months. I wish I were back in Asia. Several reasons:

a) I'm just one more old white guy back in the USA. Ageism is rampant in the hiring process. I've been an excellent fit for at least 3 major positions, and after the face to face, I never hear from anyone again. I see 35 and 40 year old guys react with fear that I'd be a better leader in their domain than they would.

b) I'm in Texas... home of the tea party yahoos... the racism and white privilege is rampant... just the other day had one guy tell me that he "hates Negro lovers". Yes, I know that Singapore has racist elements, but nothing like the overt racism that continues to exist in the south.

c) I'm in Houston... third world roads and infrastructure. Why? Because the tea party types and small government extremists choke off any attempt to repair roads, to fix bridges, to provide for parks. Seriously, Houston is a shit city in this respect... no sidewalks in most places, either. I guarantee you the roads are better in any city in Laos than they are here.

d) I'm in the thick of religious extremists... anti-gay, anti-contraception, anti abortion, anti compassion, anti woman, anti-education... anti anything that might upset their rigidly held belief system. They stick their noses in every last godd*mn political issue, creating nothing but divisiveness.

e) Highly aggressive drivers... sure, Singapore may be filled with "blur" people and lots of carrots... but you've got the kind of idiots here that pull out simply because they don't care if you have to slam on your brakes. You've got the morons that absolutely must race to get in front of you, jam their way into line, in order to save two seconds. I always remained calm in Singapore traffic... the urge to kill in Houston has run high.

I miss the clean, well maintained infrastructure of Singapore. I miss grabbing a ferry and going to Batam for a day of golf. I miss the weekend (or multiple day) jaunts to all sorts of places in Asia. I miss the unique flavor that is Singapore and Asia. I've been pretty teflon like when it comes to the shittier parts of Singapore life... I just engage. I'm glad that the religious pricks, the tea party pricks, the redneck pricks (Chinese style) are relatively few and far between.

I do appreciate the fact that I see my daughter, son in law, and granddaughter with much more regularity. I'm glad I see my friends more often but sad that I no longer see my dear Singapore friends.

I appreciate the four seasons, weather wise, even if Houston's spring and fall are short lived... it is bracing to wake up to 40F or 50F temperatures.

Maybe I'd like it better if I were in another city, but then the whole point of being close to family and friends would be out the window. So... bottom line... if I could get back, I would.

I miss my Asian lifestyle, and I am not integrating well with my new American lifestyle.

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Postby PNGMK » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 11:32 am

Strong Eagle wrote:
the lynx wrote:
Brah wrote:Happened upon this thread and thought it would be good to hear from the two of you who left occasionally to see how once you're distanced from here how it a) feels to be away and b) how it feels to be back, once settled in.

I think anyone living overseas for an extended time goes through a few phases upon return (I wouldn't know as I have yet to do it, but feel my day is coming soon) - much like those phases of arriving in a new country.

Plus it's been a year or so since SE left, that's enough time to have it all sink in.


Yeah it is nice to read I'm-back-home reports from RobSg and FaeLLe. Waiting for the rest to do so.


I've been back home for a year and a couple of months. I wish I were back in Asia. Several reasons:

a) I'm just one more old white guy back in the USA. Ageism is rampant in the hiring process. I've been an excellent fit for at least 3 major positions, and after the face to face, I never hear from anyone again. I see 35 and 40 year old guys react with fear that I'd be a better leader in their domain than they would.

b) I'm in Texas... home of the tea party yahoos... the racism and white privilege is rampant... just the other day had one guy tell me that he "hates Negro lovers". Yes, I know that Singapore has racist elements, but nothing like the overt racism that continues to exist in the south.

c) I'm in Houston... third world roads and infrastructure. Why? Because the tea party types and small government extremists choke off any attempt to repair roads, to fix bridges, to provide for parks. Seriously, Houston is a shit city in this respect... no sidewalks in most places, either. I guarantee you the roads are better in any city in Laos than they are here.

d) I'm in the thick of religious extremists... anti-gay, anti-contraception, anti abortion, anti compassion, anti woman, anti-education... anti anything that might upset their rigidly held belief system. They stick their noses in every last godd*mn political issue, creating nothing but divisiveness.

e) Highly aggressive drivers... sure, Singapore may be filled with "blur" people and lots of carrots... but you've got the kind of idiots here that pull out simply because they don't care if you have to slam on your brakes. You've got the morons that absolutely must race to get in front of you, jam their way into line, in order to save two seconds. I always remained calm in Singapore traffic... the urge to kill in Houston has run high.

I miss the clean, well maintained infrastructure of Singapore. I miss grabbing a ferry and going to Batam for a day of golf. I miss the weekend (or multiple day) jaunts to all sorts of places in Asia. I miss the unique flavor that is Singapore and Asia. I've been pretty teflon like when it comes to the shittier parts of Singapore life... I just engage. I'm glad that the religious pricks, the tea party pricks, the redneck pricks (Chinese style) are relatively few and far between.

I do appreciate the fact that I see my daughter, son in law, and granddaughter with much more regularity. I'm glad I see my friends more often but sad that I no longer see my dear Singapore friends.

I appreciate the four seasons, weather wise, even if Houston's spring and fall are short lived... it is bracing to wake up to 40F or 50F temperatures.

Maybe I'd like it better if I were in another city, but then the whole point of being close to family and friends would be out the window. So... bottom line... if I could get back, I would.

I miss my Asian lifestyle, and I am not integrating well with my new American lifestyle.


SE - thanks for the post. Genuinely helpful. My missus wants to move back to NC one day and I, as an Aussie, am dreading it.

Ageism is a huge concern. I work in a major, major US MNC and they're not meant to practice ageism but all the managers and career track people are <40 and it's damn obvious what happens to the older ones.

Dye you hair. Wear slightly trendier clothes. Get your teeth fixed. Wear new or more fashionable glasses. Terrible but that's what you might have to do.

I particularly appreciated your post on the divisiveness caused by over zealousness.

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Postby Strong Eagle » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 12:10 pm

PNGMK wrote:SE - thanks for the post. Genuinely helpful. My missus wants to move back to NC one day and I, as an Aussie, am dreading it.

Ageism is a huge concern. I work in a major, major US MNC and they're not meant to practice ageism but all the managers and career track people are <40 and it's damn obvious what happens to the older ones.

Dye you hair. Wear slightly trendier clothes. Get your teeth fixed. Wear new or more fashionable glasses. Terrible but that's what you might have to do.

I particularly appreciated your post on the divisiveness caused by over zealousness.


PNGMK, maybe you've got a better shot to already be working for a major MNC... even if they won't promote you, they have "career paths" that keep you in the company.

My experience is that MNC's, and a lot of others as well, have a pretty rigid career ladder. I know of a fellow that was transplanted from Germany to KL as part of his career ladder. Unfortunately for him, he passed the age of 46, still as a "Director" which was the death knell for future promotions. They sent him back to Germany, on a siding, good work, no doubt, but no longer on the career track.

Another fellow, the one that hired me as a contractor, made VP at 43, now senior VP at about 46... definitely a man that can make it all the way to the board.

Point is that perhaps you would have opportunities. I violate all the rules... wrong age, wrong time in service... screw what I know... I'm not part of the succession plan the creates the next generation of company leaders.

I've dyed my hair... highly recommend "Touch of Gray"... even my long time hair dresser thought it was great. New suits. Non conservative shirts. But ya know... you can't get away from spots on your skin, and even if I drop from 64 to 54, I'm still the "old guy". What the f*ck!

I think NC would be very problematic... it's at least as much of a hot bed of tea party activity as Texas. I can accept and discuss other positions... from economic policy to abortion... what is impossible for me to accept is non negotiable grandstanding from the likes of Ted Cruz... and if you are involved with Texas politics... Dan Patrick... a lying rabble rouser who will say anything to get elected. What do you do with a person whose entire retort consists of "you're a stinking libtard socialist".

It will be at least another decade before there is any hope of removing the extremists from government. Maybe if you can wait that long, at least that aspect will improve.

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Postby zzm9980 » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 12:14 pm

Strong Eagle wrote:Maybe I'd like it better if I were in another city, but then the whole point of being close to family and friends would be out the window. So... bottom line... if I could get back, I would.

I miss my Asian lifestyle, and I am not integrating well with my new American lifestyle.


I was going to say that a lot of this is because you're in Houston, but you addressed that point here.

I've only been back for 4 weeks so I'll post about it some other time down the road. I'm still up in the air about a lot of things.

But I'll make this genuine offer: If anyone comes to San Francisco I'll pay ~$50/kg for fresh mao shan wang durian. Or coklat+keju Martabak Manis.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 1:45 pm

You have a pretty good sweet tooth don't you. My 12 years in Indonesia found a liking for the same. Haven't had any in a very long time though. :(

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Postby BedokAmerican » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 2:40 pm

PNGMK wrote:
Strong Eagle wrote:
the lynx wrote:
Brah wrote:Happened upon this thread and thought it would be good to hear from the two of you who left occasionally to see how once you're distanced from here how it a) feels to be away and b) how it feels to be back, once settled in.

I think anyone living overseas for an extended time goes through a few phases upon return (I wouldn't know as I have yet to do it, but feel my day is coming soon) - much like those phases of arriving in a new country.

Plus it's been a year or so since SE left, that's enough time to have it all sink in.


Yeah it is nice to read I'm-back-home reports from RobSg and FaeLLe. Waiting for the rest to do so.


I've been back home for a year and a couple of months. I wish I were back in Asia. Several reasons:

a) I'm just one more old white guy back in the USA. Ageism is rampant in the hiring process. I've been an excellent fit for at least 3 major positions, and after the face to face, I never hear from anyone again. I see 35 and 40 year old guys react with fear that I'd be a better leader in their domain than they would.

b) I'm in Texas... home of the tea party yahoos... the racism and white privilege is rampant... just the other day had one guy tell me that he "hates Negro lovers". Yes, I know that Singapore has racist elements, but nothing like the overt racism that continues to exist in the south.

c) I'm in Houston... third world roads and infrastructure. Why? Because the tea party types and small government extremists choke off any attempt to repair roads, to fix bridges, to provide for parks. Seriously, Houston is a shit city in this respect... no sidewalks in most places, either. I guarantee you the roads are better in any city in Laos than they are here.

d) I'm in the thick of religious extremists... anti-gay, anti-contraception, anti abortion, anti compassion, anti woman, anti-education... anti anything that might upset their rigidly held belief system. They stick their noses in every last godd*mn political issue, creating nothing but divisiveness.

e) Highly aggressive drivers... sure, Singapore may be filled with "blur" people and lots of carrots... but you've got the kind of idiots here that pull out simply because they don't care if you have to slam on your brakes. You've got the morons that absolutely must race to get in front of you, jam their way into line, in order to save two seconds. I always remained calm in Singapore traffic... the urge to kill in Houston has run high.

I miss the clean, well maintained infrastructure of Singapore. I miss grabbing a ferry and going to Batam for a day of golf. I miss the weekend (or multiple day) jaunts to all sorts of places in Asia. I miss the unique flavor that is Singapore and Asia. I've been pretty teflon like when it comes to the shittier parts of Singapore life... I just engage. I'm glad that the religious pricks, the tea party pricks, the redneck pricks (Chinese style) are relatively few and far between.

I do appreciate the fact that I see my daughter, son in law, and granddaughter with much more regularity. I'm glad I see my friends more often but sad that I no longer see my dear Singapore friends.

I appreciate the four seasons, weather wise, even if Houston's spring and fall are short lived... it is bracing to wake up to 40F or 50F temperatures.

Maybe I'd like it better if I were in another city, but then the whole point of being close to family and friends would be out the window. So... bottom line... if I could get back, I would.

I miss my Asian lifestyle, and I am not integrating well with my new American lifestyle.


SE - thanks for the post. Genuinely helpful. My missus wants to move back to NC one day and I, as an Aussie, am dreading it.

Ageism is a huge concern. I work in a major, major US MNC and they're not meant to practice ageism but all the managers and career track people are <40 and it's damn obvious what happens to the older ones.

Dye you hair. Wear slightly trendier clothes. Get your teeth fixed. Wear new or more fashionable glasses. Terrible but that's what you might have to do.

I particularly appreciated your post on the divisiveness caused by over zealousness.


Another suggestion: If you haven't already done so, remove your college graduation year from your LinkedIn profile. Just list college and degree(s) obtained. Although, one can still try and guess age based on experience.

It used to seem that age discrimination didn't start until late 50s/early 60s, but apparently that's not the case. EEOC laws are in place to protect workers 40+. A potential employer can't flat out say, "You're too old" or ask "How old are you?" But indirect age discrimination is what goes on (hence Strong Eagle's example) and a lawsuit in such cases would be hard to win.

On another note, so sad but no surprise that things in Texas haven't evolved.

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Postby Primrose Hill » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 2:47 pm

zzm9980 wrote:But I'll make this genuine offer: If anyone comes to San Francisco I'll pay ~$50/kg for fresh mao shan wang durian. Or coklat+keju Martabak Manis.


Really? :lol: :lol:

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Postby Mi Amigo » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 5:04 pm

Interesting thread. We're back in Europe (for a while at least) due to family related reasons. Things that I miss from Singapore:

1. Our friends there (including Gatherings of Eagles)
2. The efficiency of Changi Airport
3. Andhra Curry in Little India
4. Sim Lim Tower
5. Er...
6. That's it.

In all honesty, I can't think of anything else that I miss right now. And there are many things that I don't miss, especially the humidity, the rip-off prices, the kiasuism and the anti-foreigner crap. That's not to say that we didn't have a good time overall in Singapore; I would definitely do it all again (given the chance to put the clock back), but TBH it's nice to be away from the place now.
Be careful what you wish for

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Postby x9200 » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 5:39 pm

Mi Amigo wrote:Interesting thread. We're back in Europe (for a while at least) due to family related reasons. Things that I miss from Singapore:
[..]
4. Sim Lim Tower

A simple mistake or a Freudian slip?

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Postby Mi Amigo » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 6:41 pm

x9200 wrote:
Mi Amigo wrote:Interesting thread. We're back in Europe (for a while at least) due to family related reasons. Things that I miss from Singapore:
[..]
4. Sim Lim Tower

A simple mistake or a Freudian slip?

Haha. Let me think, what could you possibly be alluding to...??? :twisted:

I don't really miss any other Towers in Singapore, although my friends and I used to occasionally enjoy a drink on the outside balcony at Harry's Bar on Claymore Road, watching the punters and vendors come and go at the den of iniquity opposite. We would sometimes time the departure and arrival of specific ladies - it's amazing how quick a thrill some of the Johns enjoyed.

No, I miss Sim Lim Tower because it's such a great place to buy electronic components and get old hifi and music equipment repaired. It's very hard to find a place like that in Europe nowadays.
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Postby x9200 » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 7:40 pm

I did not expect somebody would miss SLT. I like the place and used to shop there too for electronic components but after discovering the convenience of element14 I don't do it any longer.

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Postby Wd40 » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 8:05 pm

I can vouch for Mi Amigo's statement regarding getting electronics repaired for cheap at SLT/SLS. I got my ipad who's screen was completely shattered, replaced at SLS. The chinese guy(I am guessing MY chinese) did it so skillfully and patiently all for $80, it may not be an original apple screen, yet it works perfectly until now(about 5 months later)

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Postby x9200 » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 8:18 pm

I can for SLS but not for SLT.

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Postby Wd40 » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 8:23 pm

I think he just got the 2 mixed up. I haven't been to SLT, but was assuming its similar to SLS?

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Postby x9200 » Tue, 11 Mar 2014 8:44 pm

It's very different. It is for electronic parts and small components, accessories like power adapters plus some audio hardware shops and stuff related to various measurements (multimeters, oscilloscopes etc.). Practically no computers and related. Also it's much smaller and more in the old mall style.


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