Ninja Nurse

 I like nurses. Not in the fetish kind of way. We first learnt about nurses from our Primary School Chinese Textbook in an essay titled, "白衣天使" (Angels in White). On top of that, when we were asked to read about great people of the past and write a journal of thoughts about them, many pupils used Mother Teresa as their topic character. I chose Helen Keller. Alright, Mother Teresa wasn't technically a nurse, she was more that and there was a lot of association with care giving and nursing in our young minds. 

So the impression of nurse was pretty good right from the childhood. The first nurse I met in person was cold and told me she would, "press on the wound even harder" if she had to nurse an injured boyfriend. She was Jen's best friend, Samantha. Faith in nurses were restored after the first hospitalisation in my life this year being well taken care of by an Eastern European nurse who looked like Celia Pavey and a suspected Singaporean student-nurse.

Back in harder nights when Ling contacted me during the harder times when I was grinding metal for living at night, there was only three people who had conversations with me regularly during the 2330hrs break, Gintai, the Duchess of the Brook (then known as Singaporeanson Mum, M - before she took over the brook) and Ling. She contacted me around the same time as the Brookstress. Both had the same agenda. I wanna come to Perth, how how how?

I didn't have a damn idea so I introduced her someone who did. That would be our close family friend in Perth, Grace. Two things I would never forget about Grace was how she described Perth to me when I met her in 2007 during a holiday. Back then she was almost a stranger (friend of friend of friend of Jen that kind). What she told me planted the first seed of the idea of moving out of Singapore. The second thing was Grace insisting to give Jen (with Albany in her tummy) and I a treat on one of the first cold Spring nights after we arrived to Perth. We went to Fremantle and I went through the motion still in that "What-the-fuck-am-I-doing-here?!" mode. Along with Joanna, my first landlady, Grace provided the first warmth for us during the most fearful stage of our Perth adventure.

So I introduced Ling to Grace. I reckoned she would be in safe hands and I was right. She would sort out her skills assessments, the nursing requirements whatever crap for her. I finally met Ling for the first time last night. She was the luckiest woman around at this time so sit up and read on because her story will not be anything that you have read here so far.

As a person seeking migration, I thought Ling went through sacrifices. She went through a big mid career change by switching to nurse through the SPURS scheme back then and worked as a nurse for a few years subsequently. She did clarify last night though, migration wasn't the only bird she could kill with that stone. At this stage, she was ready to apply for her Australian PR, having done her IELTS and sorted her Skills Assessment. 

But Ling had other plans. She told me she prayed hard before coming to Perth for a week. She told her God she must share the story of her success with her mates this Sunday. She wanted to find a job here within her 1 week stay - without a PR in hand. Just like what MJ wanted to do. She landed on late Monday night and quipped through whatsapp, "I am here!"


On late Tuesday morning I received a message, "I got the job!"


How did she do it? That was my first question. No replies. I found out over dinner that she did cold callings to hospitals. None of the hospitals advertised any vacancies on websites, whatsoever. She was just trying her luck, trying to hit the bulls eye blindfolded. What do we know, she achieved exactly that. If you read the previously incredible story of my friend [link] who found his permanent job through a chain of unlikely events, Ling's story would be just as incredible.

None of the hospital responded, which was the expected case. One week is just too short to do much. Then the miracle happened. She got the call, attended the interview and got the offer on the same day. The hospital even agreed to adjust her date of commencement if she has difficulties migrating over within a short time frame. They happened to have a staff resigned, leaving a post open and it just happened that Ling's experience in her specific department matches what they required. Now the icing on the cake - Ling didn't even have to apply for the Australia PR now. The hospital would apply the 457 Work Visa for her and she would be allowed to bring her family as dependents along with that.

3 days.

That was how long Ling took to nail her target before the dust even settled. Swift, deadly Ninja Nurse. She was in great spirits last night. She told me it was alright for me to over-eat. She brought along red wine and insisted we must toast and celebrate with her because her family wasn't around to do that with her.

And so we did.


  1. Ask Ling to ask the hospital if they can pay for her airfare, or a couple of weeks' rent.

    She'll be surprised at what she might get. I just want a bottle of port by way of thanks. ;)

  2. Wah which temple did Ling prat to siah... sibei IMBA + OP , 3 days...
    It takes an average of 3.2 weeks for my peeps from Taiwan to get a job in Australia