All Confirmed and Good To Go

On 1st October, I was offered an enlarged role to be based in Hong Kong. On 12th October, I finally signed the contract, and I will be stationed in HK from 1st January 2013. The amount of administration and logistics in preparation for the move is just uncomprehensible. Theres so much to do, and so little time. Already I’m getting double of the mail I normally get, and my normal mails are already significant. I need to get past these next 2 months…

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Protected: God’s Providence

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Protected: Closer to the End

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Protected: A New Chapter

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Krisflyer Elite Gold …. Again….

Ok…. Remember my post on January 10th about my New Year’s Resolution? well, just a short post to say that I’ve fallen a little short of my New Year’s resolution to achieve Elite Gold status by June… 😄but I received an email from Krisflyer this morning…. Just got Elite Gold status on 14th July…. 14 days off.

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There’s Much To Be Seen at The Punggol Park Connector

I had originally planned to head out cycling this morning at 5:30am. Try and catch the sun rise along the Serangoon River/Punggol Channel. But although the alarm rang at 5am, I found myself still really tired out. It was important to pay back my sleep deficit, and I went back to sleep.

I then got up at 8am, and after Elkan headed out for his swim lessons, and the girls started their tuition, I took the Brompton out for a ride around the park connector network.

It was already 9:00am by this time. Nevertheless, it was still early, and boy, did I have a good time. Just as I swung into the park connector behind Rio Vista condominium, I saw the unmistakeable silhouette of a White Bellied Sea Eagle! This guy was swirling above the river again and again… and once it swooped down touching the waters, but left the water empty. It was catching for breakfast!

By this time, I was getting excited, and took out my camera. On the camera was the 25mm f1.4 lens, and this clearly was not enough. The small speck you see in the photo is the eagle!

Luckily I had also packed my 100-300mm Telephoto lens as well. So, I quickly swapped out my lenses and tried again. Took a couple of shots, and really… this was my first time using this lens on a new camera, and I haven’t had many practice shots… so.. after many attempts, thankfully there was this acceptable image that could be used.

This eagle is a common resident and can be seen inhabiting coastal shores as well as the northern and southern islands. Its also seen well inland near rivers and reservoirs. I’ll be certainly looking out for him/her whenever I am in the area. Actually, with vegetation like this, the entire area hosts many different types of animals and birds… 🙂

And what was I riding today? The Brompton of course! This bike has been left pretty much in the store room because of my frequent travels. But with the Park Connector now opened, its real useful..

The rest of my ride wasn’t as dramatic as coming across the White Bellied Sea Eagle, but I still enjoyed it tremendously. This bridge was recently completed, and is a godsend for many cyclists. Now it takes much less time to get to Pasir Ris from Hougang, and getting to Changi Coast road and East Coast Parkway is so much easier and safer!

Riding past Punggol Promenade, the unpaved track passes by Coney Island, before coming face to face with the Shipyard in neighboring Johor. Did you know that Pasir Gudang is just behind the Shipyard!

Riding further past Punggol End and past the Sengkang Swimming Complex where Elkan was having his swim lessons, I ended up near Gerald Drive.. Heres when I got my next “Wow” lesson. I just chanced upon Kampung Lorong Buangkok! Although I have heard numerous times of this last Kampong in Singapore, I had never known where it was located. BUt along the park connector, I saw it! Clear as day light! Gosh!!

I was reaching close to Punggol Park and back home when I saw my final “Wow”! The PCN led me along the flood canal on Buangkok Link. Heres when I saw what I thought to be a Cattle Egret. But, no! After checking and verifying with my book, I realised it was a Little Egret! 🙂

The Little Egret is the smallest of the Egrets, and can be commonly seen during Winter in Singapore. However, they are also seen in smaller numbers throughout the year. No nesting records though.

So… you never know what you might see while cycling or walking through the Punggol PCN. If you haven’t tried it before, perhaps its time you did! 🙂

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Notes to the Cell Group

Dear CG,
Would just like to share with you some of my thoughts as we move into Good Friday and the Easter weekend.

Important to Finish Well
I’ve been reading the book of 1st Kings over the last few weeks. The first portion of the book (chapters 1-11) was about the handover of power from King David to King Solomon. Solomon by all accounts was one of the greatest kings in Isreal, but Chapter 11 records for us that due to his love for women, he married many foreign women, and thus opened the door to idolatry.
He had 700 wives, princesses and 300 concubines. His wives turned his heart away from God (1 Kings 11:3). He brent after foreign gods and built high places of worship for these foreign gods.
God then said to Solomon in verse 11: “because you are doing this and have not kept my covenant and my statutes, which I have commanded you, I will surely rend the kingdom from you and will give it to your servant!”
My challenge to us this week, as we enter this Holy week and remember the sacrifice of our lord for us on the cross, is to take stock of our lives. Where are we now, what are we doing? Where are we on the eternal race towards God? We may have started well, but are we on target to end well?

Don’t Miss the Trees for the Woods!
From 1 Kings 12 onwards, we now read about the Division of the kingdom as God had promised. Both Isreal and judah now had various kings who were so far away from God, if you lived in those days, you probably wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between a Philistine and a Jew. 🙂
BUT, the point is…. The spiritual legacy from David and Solomon wasn’t passed down to their descendants. They strayed and turned completely from God. What happened?
The bible doesn’t record for us how David and Solomon instructed their numerous children in the ways of the Lord, but I would venture to say that they probably didn’t do very much of it.
As we pray during this season for the Next Generation, keep in mind that we are all ultimately responsible for how our children develops in their lives, at least in their developing years.
Are we spending enough time with our kids? Are we instructing them in the ways of the Lord? Are we modeling the right methods and lifestyle to them? Do we pray with them? Do we pray for them?
Our children are a privilege from God. They are the arrows in our hands. We need to ensure that we are good parental stewards of them. They are the trees in the large woods we live in. Don’t miss the trees for the woods!

Paul

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