Sunday, October 28, 2012


Last night my left eye suddenly became sore and began to twitch. Pretty soon I couldn't see properly, and began to panic, crashing around the apartment like a half-blind rhinocerous. I rinsed it with water, hoping to dislodge whatever foreign particle might be in there, but it was no good - the pain went on and on.

Eventually, having typed up last night's blog one-eyed, I went to bed, and woke up at six this morning with my left eye gummed up with some sort of gunk, huge smudges of sleep hanging off my eye lashes and all over my eye socket. I wiped that off and went out for my run.

It usually takes about fifteen minutes before I feel warmed up for a run. I was hoping this would happen, but after fifteen minutes I still felt pretty dreadful. As I carried on, I started to see people wearing running tops, and felt a certain foreboding.
There was a race starting from near the Marina Bay Sands this morning, which I only realised as I got closer. I didn't want to find myself in the middle of a mass start when I was just trying to get my 21 kilometres in, so I tried to speed up and get through the start area before it ... started.

I carried on and on, without seeing any sort of start; I went past a hydration station, past lots of people wearing lurid running tops, and eventually past the Marina Barrage and along to the south side of the bay.

I felt worse and worse, but on I struggled, up along the edge of the reservoir, along the highway and back down towards the Singapore Flyer, where I encountered the runners, a huge stream of neon-coloured shirts jogging towards me at full speed.

I made a u-turn, ran alongside them for a few yards, then across the race course and out the other side. I carried on until I got to the bridge, where I saw a man with long hair, too tight shorts and socks up to his knees, waiting for the lights to change. He set off, and soon we encountered the race again, but instead of avoiding them he ran right at them. I followed in his slipstream, although his terrible 80s hair meant he had much more power, and he pulled away from me.

I carried on, but I could never catch up with him. I headed back home, my body protesting with ever step. I made it home, 3.5 kilometres behind where I should have been, and keeled over.

I spent the rest of the day eating biscuits and watching American sitcoms, then this evening we went to the Gardens By The Bay, and walked around. It's an odd place: although the external gardens are quite pleasant, the interior of the domes are a bit too sterile. It's like walking through a very clean shopping mall, but with plants. Lots of plants. No dirt, no animals, no insects. Just perfect sterility.

I got a bit freaked out walking through an enormous metaphor for Singapore, and so we went to the Marina Bay Sands, which is just a big climate controlled soulless hangar, but today I was utterly freaked out by how soulless it was, and soon after we had to get a taxi and flee. At least my eyes seem to be working properly again.


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