Sunday, June 28, 2009

Let them eat cakes!

Infamously uttered by the Bourbon Queen of France, Marie Antoinette, the phrase "Let them eat cakes" ultimately proved to be her undoing. It could be argued that the starving Parisians didn't like cakes very much (and neither do I, but if Marie Antoinette really bore any semblance to Kirsten Dunst, I would most definitely swallow cakes whole). However, the very same phrase uttered by our undisputed Queen of ASH, Miss Carolyn Tan, brought about quite the opposite effect. It had cemented her regal status at ASH.

It all began with the idea of treating the elderly at the home to snacks (whipped up by the volunteers) during tea once or twice a month. This idea became an instant hit with the elderly at the home, as it provided a refreshing change to the repetitive menu at the home. On yesterday's service, the snack served during tea time was butter cakes (baked by Carolyn's sister). As expected, the butter cakes were finished to the very last slice. Although I had yet to reach ASH during tea, first hand accounts by Benny and the rest of the volunteers attested to the immense popularity of the butter cakes. Indeed, some elderly had even requested for a second helping! Like a seasoned food critic, Benny managed to describe with painstaking details of how heavenly the butter cake tasted. When quizzed on how would he know, Benny sheepishly admitted that he had helped himself to a slice of the butter cake. Without missing a beat, Benny continued that he could tell that the butter cakes were baked from the finest of ingredients, which separated them from those sold at the confectionaries. For the very first time, I had actually chided myself for failing to be punctual for volunteering service.

Benny's comments aside, the rest of the volunteers agreed that the butter cakes were a much welcome treat for the elderly at the home. Some elderly had even remarked that they have not had cakes in ages and that the butter cakes had lifted their spirit. Although we were glad that the elderly at the home enjoyed the butter cakes, I could not help but feel overwhelmed by the fact that such a mundane dessert could mean a world of luxury to them. Thus, the tea sessions will become a permanent fixture in ASH volunteering activities.

Besides the resounding success of yesterday's tea session, the service had recorded the most number of volunteers for the month of June. 16 volunteers in all turned up for the service, and the occasion even prompted a photo taking session (with great difficulty, as we tried to squeeze and get everyone to fit nicely into a picture with Carolyn's camera). When we made our way to each individual wards for the singing session, I couldn't help but notice that we need not sing at the top of our voice to project the volume of our singing. Ah, the might of sheer numbers!

Before I end this entry, I would like to (on behalf of everyone in ASH) thank Carolyn's sister for generously offering to bake the butter cakes. The butter cakes had without a doubt, given the elderly at the home an unforgettable tea session.

On a side note, I did not realize that there are readers outside of Carolyn who scrutinize this blog diligently. I got the shock of my life when Benny confronted me yesterday on my previous post, as it had almost gotten him into trouble with his missus! That being said, I will definitely exercise greater tact for all my future entries. But on second thoughts, I probably won't (and they say women are capricious!). In doing so, all the volunteers' fun and laughters will inevitably be lost. Hence, it is the duty of this blog (and mine) to chronicle all the ridiculous, wild and even embarrassing happenings at ASH.


Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Upcoming Events: ASH Flag Day and ASH Volunteers' Anniversary

Dearest readers,

it has been awhile since I did some serious blogging on this blog site (again, Carolyn will not be pleased with this), so I've got to get my act back together and do what's need to be done! But please don't be mistaken. I love to blog, I seriously do. It's just that I'm rarely conscientious enough to do it on a regular basis (it doesn't help that I'm a hopeless procrastinator). Before I proceed to digress any further, I'm charged with 2 important announcements. Firstly, the date for the annual All Saints Home flag day is drawing near. The details for this event are as follow:

Date: 11th July 2009

Reporting Stations:
1) Jurong East MRT Station
2) Woodlands MRT Station
3) Ang Mo Kio MRT Station
4) Saint Andrew Cathedral Church (behind the bus stop on the main road)
5) Kovan Hub
6) Tampines North CC Foyer

1) 0800 to 1300
2) 1130 to 1630
3) 1600 to 1900 (Only for Tampines North CC Foyer volunteers)

If you are interested to raise funds for our beneficiaries at All Saints Home through this flag selling event, please send your particulars to We look forward to your response because All Saints Home needs you!

Now that I'm done with announcing the important stuff, I shall move on to an informal one. All Saints Home Volunteering turns 4 years old this July. I've to admit that I've always hated to celebrate birthdays or anniversaries, but this is different. The 4th anniversary celebrates the priceless camaraderie shared by all the volunteers, who have been regularly visiting all the elderly at ASH. Something which means the world to me.

During this time, we have made close friends with each other. How can anyone forget Carolyn's high pitched laughter, Kee Teck's reticent but reliable demeanor, Jiahao's Mambo-crazed moves, Sook Ying's energy and playfulness, Ah Xing's compulsively meticulous event planning skills, Benny's charm that swept all the aunties at ASH off their feet, Eric's feeble attempts at cantonese, the painfully innocent (and shy) Vietnamese girls, Eunice's powerful vocal chords, Chloe's witty sarcasm and of course, my buckets load of nonsense. If I've missed out anyone, I sincerely apologize. There are simply many names to remember! But please do join us in the celebration, and this time, look me in the eye, and make me remember your name!!! At least that was how I could learn to pronounce and remember the Vietnamese girls' name (if albeit with great difficulty and practice).

The question really is, how could we not celebrate such a joyous occasion, which marks 4 years of meaningful volunteering and friendship? So c'mon, get your act together and join us!