In the seminar room I got to chatting with the guy who was running the sound board, who was interested to learn what language is spoken in Singapore. I gave as short an explanation of this as I could, and we naturally got to talking about where we came from. It turns out that he and I came from the same hometown, although for some reason after admitting we came from the same town, I then corrected myself to say the town just north of it, which I never actually did live in. I can't explain why I did this. I think I just panicked.
He was interested in the point of the whole thing, certainly, although what really drew his eye was that one of the firms there had a glass bowl filled with little notepads. He was hoping to snag at least one of them, since while he doesn't use them himself there is a woman he knows who does small theater type work and she has no end of need for little notepads, and she's always grateful when he provides some of them. So after the presentations I went over to the table and, after some necessary maneuvering to get up to the table I grabbed one of the notepads. Getting back out again was another challenge -- it was ultimately easiest to climb over a row of seats instead -- but I happily turned it over to him. In gratitude, he gave me a fat orange Sharpie marker from his sound station -- he showed off the way it could draw at a really thick and a middling thick line -- and gave me this bit of stolen marker. The karmic implications of all this action leave me dizzy.
The presentations themselves were mostly a series of explanations that life in Singapore was too exciting, and was going to get to be more so as the casinos opened up shortly. One of the financial analysts mentioned the Marina Bay Integrated Resort would be just minutes from the financial district and so he could put his lunch hours to those potentially more effective uses of his time, which drew an appreciative chuckle from the audience and nervous grins from the folks who were there direct from Singapore.
Trivia: While Peter Minuit, of purchase-of-Manhattan fame, grew up speaking German and Dutch, his ancestry was France and so he pronounced his name ``Min-wee''. Source: The Island at the Centre of the World, Russell Shorto.
Currently Reading: We Reach The Moon, John Noble Wilford.