Thursday, 25 September 2014

an unsung hero I met today!

my chain project
One of the things I am grateful to Singapore is that it has helped me improve my DIY skills (of course apart from a lot of other lovely things this country has to offer)! So I decided to take upon myself to complete this half-installed project at home...These lights (as pictured right) were purchased during my summer trip to India. Once installed, we felt that they were a tad bit high and they need to come down a bit lower.

And so my search for those (identical looking) chains started. My search got me to Geylang, an area infested with lighting and hardware stores. Being clueless I decided to get off my taxi and just walk randomly into stores and look for my chain!

After walking out of several highly recommended lighting stores (obviously disappointed), I chanced upon this 'hole in the wall' hardware store (as pictured below). Hoping to meet an old Singaporean 'uncle', I was pleasantly surprised to see this very smart pretty girl (Sue) manning the store. Sue also looked equally perplexed to see me (maybe an unlikely candidate to buy a chain)!

The hardware store @ Geylang

And so we got talking while Sue looked for my chain all over the store. In the 5-minutes she spoke to me, I was touched and choked.

Sue elaborated that the store is close to 30 years old (as old as her) and belongs to her dad. I obviously had a lot of questions on my face (what was she doing at the store, does she sit here every day or is she substituting for her dad, do they really have enough sales for her to spend her whole day here).

For whatever strange reason, Sue gladly spoke to me. She had spent her last few years in Korea (in the financial sector). She returned back home to Singapore a year ago, when her father got terminally ill. And she decided to run his store for him, as it was always his wish that the store must not shut down.

I think the above is easier said than done. Sue said "I feel a bit lost at times in the store, don't even know the utility of half the items but I have spent my childhood here and want to do this for my dad and I don't know how long I will continue running this store!" WOW!

That's all we spoke. And I was touched to hear and see what I witnessed today. Though I never got my chain at her store, I think my walking into her store and spending those 5-minutes was only to hear the above! I salute you Sue, you truly were my hero today!

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