What’s going on?

As usual, its been awhile since I last updated about what’s happening in my life. Ever since we got hit with Covid-19, I’ve been working from home (WFH) for the past four months already.

But strangely enough, even though most folks around me have found more time on their hands and are going on Netflix binges, baking and picking up all sorts of hobbies, I’m proud to say I’ve managed to keep my centre mostly around work, family and God.

On the work front, WFH wasn’t too difficult to adjust to. We’re already using laptops (unlike some other depts) and the software allows us remote login capabilities so everything works from day 1. Bandwidth struggles were there initially, but as the enterprise upscaled everything, things got smoother.

Due to security reasons, we’re not using Zoom like every other company, hence the workday consists of mainly phone conferences and the usual power-pointing and emails for me. We’ve stopped having physical brainstorms and workshops for obvious reasons, but we’ve found our alternatives using online platforms, so that’s part of the new mix.

A friend has also recently setup a LinkedIn group to create a social think-tank where folks can bring up problem statements in the civic space and design thinkers can facilitate a Saturday morning brainstorm. Called ThinkForGood, its just really a platform for people to connect for ideas and solutions and hopefully bring some of these to life for a better society. I facilitated one around the topic of building inclusive neighbourhoods with Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) and have learnt much from the subject matter experts there.

Have been trying to optimise my new workspace, so I got a new monitor, mouse and chair! Should have done this years ago as I’ve now gotten some relief from leg and wrist pains by getting the optimal seating angles and heights.

On the family front, everything’s pretty good, especially now that the kids are back in school 🙂

Home-based learning (HBL) was a learning curve for both the kids and the parents, but thankfully the boy has my old iMac all setup so we could get online separately with ease. I can empathise with how families who are non tech-savvy had to jump through hoops just to be able to let the kids submit their homework.

The boy has gotten more mature, and the new challenges of device / game addictions are creeping in. It’s sometimes a hard fight to find the balance of how much is enough, especially during the circuit breaker period where they had to go online for school.

The girl has been spending a lot of time art-and-crafting with mummy. And its always a joy to receive some random art piece when I’m busy WFH.

She’s also starting to read and write, so that’s always encouraging to experience.

Back to the Church front, things have been exciting to say the least!

When churches had to close and masses and all events were cancelled, our Landings ministry had a bit of a lull. But everyone started jumping onto the Zoom platform and we managed to get the weekly community sessions up and running within a few weeks of the circuit breaker and things were going well. People who were based in other countries were even able to join in. Something that could never have been done in the past.

With that confidence, the team then brainstormed how we could potentially conduct the 10-week program we have, and coincidentally (#godmoment), there was a new parish that was interested in starting our program. So we setup a mini-run of 4-weeks as a trial and are currently in the process of bringing the team through it and taking notes on how to make it work for the future.

I have never seen the church evolving at this pace!

The weekend when the circuit breaker kicked-in, online streaming of masses kicked-in. And the production quality of the broadcast were admirable.

Truly, this whole Covid-19 situation has forced everyone to go digital. Even our beloved 2000-year old Catholic Church.

I’ve also been contributing guitar and bass tracks to the weekly praise and worship sessions. Its a very garage-like setup where we all just record ourselves on iPhones and the main editor stitches everything up together. It’s not perfect, and sometimes we’re off a beat here and there but it keeps us going as musicians.

So, that’s quite a bit from me in these viral times. I pray our families stay safe and healthy.

What’s going on with you?

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