So yesterday was the day that I was allowed to head back to the office. After a two-month hiatus, due to the circuit breaker, I woke up earlier than usual on Monday and prepared to head to work. It wasn’t the only thing I miss (which is the office and my desk) after two months, but also the simple act of taking the MRT to go to work. I have literally not stepped into the the train to commute to work or anywhere for that matter during the past two months due to the circuit breaker.
It was such a surreal experience. Donning my mask, I walked to Fort Canning Station, which is around 10 minutes away from where I am currently staying. Tapping my card, heading to the platform, it all seemed so alien for a minute, before every memory of my daily work commute came rushing back. It train was fortunately wasn’t crowded, except for Outram Station, which I had to go via Chinatown and heading west to Buona Vista station.
From there, I was pleasantly surprised that there were not many people heading to the offices where I work. Perhaps because despite the workforce team segregation, not all can go back to work just yet. In an effort to slow down or even stop the transmission of Covid-19, there has to be a deliberate effort in slowly re-opening parts of the country’s economy, and that means not everyone can immediately go back to work. Retail shops are still closed and dining in is still not allowed in this new phase of the circuit breaker.
But despite all that, when I arrived at my office, it was deathly quiet. I was accompanied by one other colleague who, besides me had the approval to head to the office.
My entire office desk was covered in garbage bags. Perhaps due to the extended period of absence and to protect the computers and other sensitive stuff from moisture or dust or whatever that is floating in the air, there is a deliberate effort to protecting them by covering it with garbage bags.
I removed it and smiled as I saw a familiar sight. My desk, my pieces of post-it notes and papers strewn all about, no change from the last time I had to hastily abandon my desk when the circuit breaker measures suddenly kicked in.
However, my computer and phone was switched off with the plugs removed from the socket. No matter, I plugged them in and switched on my computer. It worked! But it took a long time to boot up. Partly because my computer is quite old and, still using the traditional physical hard drive with slow read and write cycles, takes a long time to boot up to Windows. When it booted up, I still couldn’t use the computer as I had to install a ton of Windows updates since the last time I used the computer. It took me a good hour for my computer to settle down so that I can actually use them.
While waiting for the computer to be ready, I cleaned my desk. It wasn’t particularly dirty or dusty, but I used to opportunity to clear useless pieces or scraps or paper that I don’t need it anymore, repositioned my phone, computer monitor and other knick knacks so that I can work more efficiently and that everything is within reach from where I sit.
But the most shocking thing of all as I was cleaning my desk, was how some of my succulent plants survived without water for two whole months!
Some did die, especially the smaller ones, since, I assume they are far more fragile and couldn’t stand the parched soil for such a long time. But the bigger ones were the ones that truly surprise me. They were still green and perhaps still very much alive. I used a squirt bottle and immediately resuscitated the plants by wetting the soil underneath (but not flooding them with water, as it will cause the roots of succulents to rot). They look green but I cannot be too sure if they are truly still alive. I can only wait and see, nursing them back to full health and over time, hopefully, they remain green and ripe.
I plan to buy more succulent to replace the ones that died. It’s nice to decorate your desk with living plants.