I think Singapore is a food paradise. There are many food choices people can eat in Singapore. They include Japanese, Chinese, Malay and Thai food. You can eat at the many food stalls, coffee shops and restaurants found everywhere. Some of the local favourite dishes are chilli crab, laksa, fish head curries and a chicken dish with rice. Singaporean people love eating food. One time I went with my family to a restaurant at midnight. It was so busy we had to wait for an empty table. If you visit Singapore try as many different foods as you can.
The Haven is a supported and permanent home for people with mental illness, particularly those with schizophrenia. It opened in 2011 with the help of many individuals, companies and the government. There are 14 people who live there, including me. We each have our own unit. I have my own space and privacy. However we encouraged to mix. There is a communal living area where we get together to play table tennis, monopoly, and enjoy cooking groups. For many of us The Haven stands out for being the best place in the world.
As a practicing counsellor, I am always looking for opportunities to develop professionally. Attending workshops or reading text books helps me both at work and at home, as I have 3 young children. I attended a workshop last April called 'Engaging Kids Today, it's not just about iPads' by well known speaker, Dan Haesler. He spoke about engaging kids with technology, online programs and mobile applications. When I returned home, I discussed what I had learned with my middle son, Magnus. He was pleased that I had made the effort to learn more about the things he enjoys.
Volunteering can be a fun, sociable and rewarding experience. It also provides important help to other people. Many different kinds of organisations use volunteers. One of my volunteer roles is working as a mentor with people with mental illness. The program is called Connecting Mentors and Mates and is organised by Doutta Galla Community Health. As a mentor, I am paired with participants who want to work on improving their connections in the community. My role is to support this person in working towards a goal of their choice.
A sensory garden appeals to our five senses of touch, sight, smell, hearing and taste. In sensory gardens people with disabilities can interact with nature in a safe environment. Various plants are close to paths to invite visitors to touch petals, leaves and branches. There may be sunny and shady areas. Sounds in a garden may include water splashing from a fountain. I visited Vision Australia’s sensory garden in Melbourne. As I moved through the garden I enjoyed the various smells and feeling the different plants. I especially loved the yellow rose bush, the rosemary bush and the Kangaroo Paw.
A six-week course teaches blind people the sport of archery. They learn to hold the bow, use special tactile devices, and rules of the sport. Those who complete the course can apply to become members of an archery club and take part in competitions. Hitting the target with an arrow is a very rewarding feeling.
On holiday in Malta recently, buses were the best way of getting around the small Mediterranean island. There were many scenarios trying to get on a bus with my scooter. These included many not stopping, being too full, ramps breaking and metal ramp rings pulling off. Locals and tourists frequently used the buses. No one seemed concerned by the full buses. By the end of the holiday, we had enough of busing. Back home in Melbourne I take trams regularly but I have never caught a bus. I am interested to know what others think about their bus experiences in Victoria.