Part one of three: flowers from the fields.
As a young boy, I used to enjoy picking flowers from the fields in front of my house.
I’d bunch and arrange them then tie them up with a bit of trailing Forrest fern and I would present them to my mother. “If my two sisters didn’t bully me, steal them and claim the bunch was theirs” (living with three women was quite a challenge).
My father was away a lot in the army, I had to be strong and look after every one whilst dad wasn’t there “I was only eight years old at that time” it taught me good values for the future and how to respect women also to understand them (I kept hearing the older boys at school saying that it was an impossibility.) how to speak to them and so on, mind you, the respecting bit was quite hard to do after they stole my flowers, pushed me in the mud and taunted me for hours.
I started going to libraries and reading about different gardens around the world and dreaming about being eighteen and being allowed to go travelling, I really wanted to visit the Botanic gardens in Singapore and see the orchid section “I would love that, no sisters either.” -Bonus-
So I started saving, all my pocket money, all the money I earned from my paper delivery job, all money given to me as birthday and Christmas presents “I even sold some of my actual presents and saved the money” I had a dream and nothing was going to stop me.”
When I was 16 and a half my dad came home and he took over the role of being the strong man in the house, I told him my plans and he thought it was a superb idea “what a nice surprise that was” and he contributed to my savings.
I was 17, my sisters were courting two lavish men that treated them really well, they were both a pillar of the community and also really nice to me too.
Apart from being at school where my mates used to play football and pick on girls, having my father back and my sisters boyfriends, I really felt a sense of manhood at the perfect time when I was about to depart to Singapore and needed to toughen up.
The day came, my whole family came to the airport and wished me well, I was so excited yet so terrified at the same time.
I managed to sleep whilst I was on the plain, as soon as I arrived at Singapore airport, I collected my bags and walked outside and jumped in a taxi.
I asked the driver to drive past the famous hotel Marina Bay Sands and Raffles hotel “jut so I could get aquatinted “I was a young lad, I needed to know the best places to go “I wanted to try a Singapore Sling” and finally I pulled up to the nicest hotel I had ever stayed in “daddy’s treat for four days” the Pan Pacific Orchard.
He payed for a room to give me time to get a job and find somewhere else to live and as he knew I was interested in the Botanic gardens, well that hotel is right next to it.
I applied and attained an interview at the Botanic gardens, two days later I secured a job and I could pursue my dream of being amongst flowers.