I'm now a docent trainee for National Museum of Singapore (NMS), if I haven't said enough. It will all come to an end on the 27th March 2018. Yes, it is just around the corner. I'm trying not to think too much about it. Why ? Well, let me see...
I will miss the 9am sharp, 2min WOW presentations of the artefact of the week which I had to research and memorise over the weekend. I will miss learning even more about that artefact from my group leader or GL Linka Lokker while the sun streams through the beautiful colonial windows of the 1887 National Museum building along Stamford Rd. Oh yes, did I mention that it was built in 1887??
Then, when the presentations are over, we'll walk up to the 3rd level where we'll get to listen to interesting insightful lectures every Tuesday. I will miss learning so much of Singapore's history from these renowned speakers and historians. The most recent being Margaret Thomas of AWARE who showed what women in Singapore have achieved since 1819. An eye-opener.
I'll miss the 11am tea break where we mingle with fellow docent trainees and trainers over tea and finger food. I have learnt so many new recipes in the last 6 months, some of which I have posted in my other page of recipes. We'll bicker about the amount of work we have - the research, the writing, the presentations while we are all actually pleased with ourselves and our achievements.
At 12, I'll miss listening, during our various gallery walkthroughs, to experienced docents who give us in depth knowledge of the galleries and we learn from them what to do and what not to do during our guiding.
I'll miss the Thursday field trips where we have visited so many historic places in Singapore all with guides. Some of the places include Bukit Brown Cemetary, the Supreme Court, URA, China Town, Changi Prison Chapel & Museum etc. These were not compulsory but not many of us miss them! I wouldn't have thought twice about visiting these places if not for this training.
I'll miss the shadow touring where we have to shadow an actual tour by an experienced guide at the National Museum. We choose the date and time and observe how an actual guiding is done. Sometimes we shadow student tours to observe how to guide the students who can be quite difficult to handle.
Mostly, I will miss the many friends I have made over the last 6 months, fellow Singaporean Christine with her quirky but stylish dressing and owner of 5 cats and a vegan, the ever smiling renowned artist Nidhi, the ardent supporter of local transport and culture American Urvashi, the very experienced, calm, nothing-can-shake-me docent from the Indian Heritage Centre Jyoti(IHC), my fellow groupmates French Angelica and Swiss Irina, fellow Singaporean with a British accent Jane, the cute always asking questions Belgian Gaelle, our official photographer Michelle Lim, another experienced docent from IHC-Durga, the matured but Super friendly Mariet, sweet Ewa, the very first docent trainee I chatted with on Sep 14th 2017 Belgian Ini, mysterious Renia, the beautiful Dutch swan Michelle, British Carey who gave so many tips before my visit to London last year, the American Carrie who gave me a yet to try pumpkin muffin recipe and our co heads Karen Houtman and Diana Loo who have done such a great job heading this batch of trainees, our field trip coordinators Choy May and Chwee Peng, our speaker coordinators Anne and Lara... the many group leaders (or GLs ) my very own fantastic group leader Dutch Linka Lokker, Mieke, Colombe, Estelle,Antje, Tessa, Jo and so many more...
It struck me yesterday that when we are just getting closer and getting to know each other better, we are going to go our separate ways. Isn’t it cruel, the way life sometimes plays such cruel tricks on us? These last 6 months will just become memories years from now. That is really sad.
See, now you know what I mean when I said earlier that I don't want to think too much about the fact that my docent training at NMS is coming to an end. Like all good things (and hopefully bad things too), it must come to an end one day, I guess. But, I'll enjoy the next few weeks while it lasts and hopefully we still do keep in touch after our training.
My home is
usually in a mess and has dust settled on almost everything. But I believe laughter and love will win the day. In 20 years, my girls won't remember how messy the house was but will remember the time we spent together and the love they felt...