She hit forty yesterday. Not too bad at all for an old lady (hey, don't blame me; blame the media for saying that any woman above thirty is old - to give birth, that is). Seriously, we - at least my generation - have been fortunate; no hunger, no riot, no war and minimised crimes. At least, I get to have an education; a lot of people fail to see the importance of having one. Without which, one can be driven to desperation and crime. The man who tried to rob a May bank along Bukit Timah road with a toy gun some time ago is a classic example. He was jobless, hungry (he has to a family to feed) and uneducated. The last sin prompted despair and my sympathy and also prohibited him from asking for welfare assistance, which was later offered, and rightly so, to his family after he was sent to jail. I guess this is no big deal if you want to compare with some countries like Indonesia or Vietnam. Sure, they are the poor cousins of Asia where you see more beggars in the streets. But I have come to expect crimes, no matter how petty, committed by people like the "toy gun robber" to be indicators of the ill of the society. It is sad even to see one case of a fellow countryman missing out on what our homeland can offer and feeling cornered. It is just not right.
Recent months, our old lady had her fair share of gruesome crimes - beheaded China lady (hallelujah! With which the 4-D seekers gathered), rape and murder (the supposedly insane, smiling Ah took walked right across the causeway) and the ex-air stewardess throwing her Gura Guni-lover's daughter down a flat (I still feel sick to the stomach - what can she possibly sees in a married rubbish collector?). The retirees are having a field day attending the hearings. Again, you can't really compare with some crime-infested cities - like New York or Mexico - where crimes are committed by the seconds and no decent lady can walk the night alone. Yes, at least a lady can feel safe to go home alone deep into the night here. This also means one less excuse for me to send the girl with silver earrings home. But it is only a small price to pay.
With wealth accumulating in this country, there is a greater desire among the people to get even wealthier. The result is more commercial crimes. The Informatics group's accounting irregularities is a prime example - the recognition of revenue is a very basic element and thus material of a financial report. Another earth-shaking news was the CAO's CEO who overtraded, resulting in excessive loss. And God's knows what else goes unreported in our press. Of course, the "gold tap" CEO of cash-rich charity organisation is worthy of mention - simply for his arrogance for someone of his position. His power obviously gets to his head.
At the end of the day, I can't imagine how a person would not have to brave any storms to reach forty. Only with hardships and adversities, does one grow, mature and prosper. And our old lady really does have its fair share of both.