The Real Sydney

Continuation from "Where Australia Isn't Greener Pasture" [link], an email received from a faraway friend offering her silky helping hands.


Hey bro,

Meant to write to you for quite some time, but I've been busy with my wedding, down with this god damn awful flu virus that everyone in office is having, and so, just no time lah.

While watching TV waiting for the ex, now no longer futre prime minister of Australia to make a speech, thought I will write u this long overdue email instead.

First things first, I am so glad that you got the cancer nipped in the butt before it gets bad, and that you don't have to go through the awful thing call chemo. From what I know, medical services in Australia are very good, and you made a very good decision to stick to your guns and stay here, instead of shifting home immediately.

I'm sure you realise by now, that this is a wake up call, blah blah blah, and maybe when things have settled down, it will be good to consider insurance, just to make sure things are covered. Anyways, health is wealth, and am glad that this incident as got you back into blogging, and that you should not consider stopping again anytime soon ;o)

The next thing is with regards to that Singaporean girl who is in Sydney. I don't mind meeting up with her and feel free to pass my email on to her if you can. What I really want to say to her, especially in that aspect about Asians being discriminated, is so not very true, even more so in Sydney. I was quite worked up when I read that post ( sigh, this opportunity is so wasted on her....) , and decided to step back and understand why did she say such things, when I feel so privileged to live here in Australia, that it's so full of opportunities, compared to me not being able to have that feeling at all in Singapore whatsoever when I was there. 

And I think these are the possible reasons:

1. this is her first time living overseas. it is hard. no friends, no family. Working overseas is different from being a student studying overseas, or being on an exchange program, or on holiday. you get culture shock, you need to start getting comfortable with being by yourself, handle bills, blah blah blah. Is quite a shock to the system if one is constantly surrounded by family and friends and by many many people. One have to learn how to look after yourself, and learn from others without being spoonfed, or told what to do. One have to be proactive, if you are determined to make it work. 

2. Instead of shifting the blame on others, maybe it will be good to first shift perspective, and question oneself what is it that I'm doing wrong or what do I need to do if I want to get promoted/climb the corporate ladder. Watch out what the managers/leaders in the company do, how do they handle people and manage situations, why do people respect them, and learn from them. Maybe she's right about the company, that it actually discriminates, but while she's got the opportunity, what can she learn from it, so that when she goes to another place, she can get a managerial role. Is it because the other aisans in the company are content with where they are? Or is it because they are not very vocal about their views, and are too humble about the things they have achieved, compared to others, who are comfortable and proud of the things they have done, and has no problems about talking about that with their team leads/ supervisors to get a review for promotion. 

3. It takes me 3 years to actually have a nice group of friends, and most of them, I met them through work, and they are as passionate as I am about things in the digital space. She is lucky that she is in a digital age now where the internet has enabled overseas living so much more easier. There are websites such as ( ) to help people who has similar interests to hang out with each other. Take up classes, explore sydney, do bush walking, Maybe I can meet up with her for coffee when my wedding is over, and maybe, can show her the real Sydney ;o) 

4. I think you are right about personality. What is her key reason for wanting to live here. Generally, it's the people who makes the place. For me, I've been living overseas for too long, and having nothing else to talk about other than shopping, where to eat, and bitching makes me bored. I love nature, and love meeting international people. I have to admit though, I chose Sydney because I have a larger probability of getting a job here, and it was the first place that I got a job offer when I was in New Zealand before coming over. If it's for shopping, or just for a job, it's going to be harder to stay here longer....

Ok...enough of my rant. Btw, came to know about this site that helps sponsor visas if the person has the skill set that Australia needs. I know about it when I was at a Google event for startups, and the founder of the site was there. She seems genuine, that's why I think this site is trustworthy. I heard from fellow workmates from China that the new migration law is actually not extra hard. As long as you are in the bucket where there is a lack of people with those skills ( such as in IT), it should be ok. Only catch is that the IELTS score requirements is now higher. Anyways, here the site:

Here's my few cents. Hope you are enjoying winter here and your little girl is very cute! 

take care ;o)


Helloooo sister,

恭喜恭喜咯!I can feel the joy all the way from Sydney. Thanks for dropping me words of encouraging during the recent dark times. I didn't expect any, definitely not from someone busy with her wedding plans. We had been through that and we knew. Let me extend my congrats to you once again and wish everything goes as planned on your wedding.

I too, took some time to reply this email. Funnily, the man that everyone thought had lost his balls had became the Prime Minister. Bet you never expected that ya?

I am one of those who buy into the concept of cancer cells living in everyone's body but getting eliminated daily by the immune system. So technically I am not cancer free, especially I had a record of losing battles which allowed cancer cells to set up base in my bladder. The war is never over, though I agree that it is a great thing to destroy their bastion before they are allowed to consolidate their positions. It was certainly a right decision to receive treatment here, on hindsight.

Thanks for offering your friendship to Y*. Just an update. My friend Sydney Librarian had met up with Y* once or twice ever since. She told me they had a great time chatting and eating Hokkien Mee in some street of Sydney. That doesn't sound too bad, eh? My friend actually works as a librarian and she stays in Sydney. Hmm. Having a fun time being Captain Obvious on a cold Winter morning here. I will definitely let Y* know about this and send her your contact details. With this, her number of friends will actually increased by 200% since she first contacted me. She will definitely be pleased with these figures, as a fellow engineer herself.

Your points on Sydney is useful for me. I definitely learnt something from that and I think Y* will benefit from the tips as well. Thanks for taking time to list them down. If anyone noticed, I know nuts about the place to be giving Y* any useful advice at all. What I could only do is to get her some lao jiao Sydney friends like yourself.

Thank you for your lovely compliments about my daughter. For being nice, here is Albany saying "Hi" to Auntie C. For one last time, best wishes for your wedding and marriage and wish you 早生貴子

Hi Auntie C!

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