Last Work Day in Singapore

I finally quit my job and served my notice period until yesterday, my last day at work.

A milestone, since I have been working there for a little over four years, whilst I had never even stayed for a year at my previous jobs. I recorded my own thoughts throughout my last day so I can look back and reminisce. I thought it would be fun to share the snippets here.

Alternative titles for this post: Freedom from the cubicle prison and creativity numbing desk job! or Glorious free time with dangerously decreasing moolah in my account.

1:03 AM – I can’t sleep!!

Tomorrow is my last day of work, and I have mixed feelings, thoughts, and images of an empty wallet and sleeping on a bunk bed (Military? Dormitory? Or prison??).

Fafa and Jik texted me earlier, cheering me up for tomorrow. Sweet of them. I know it means something to them also, as they are the ones I share my life with the most.

7:15 AM – Last Alarm

Alarm rings ngiiiii. Snoozed. 7:18 AM, and another alarm rings NGIIIIII. Snoozed. 7:25 AM, and the third alarm rings.

Work. Me. Human. Money. These words formed in my head. I reached for my phone, typed the passcode half-sleeping, and again and again checked the date. Just in case it was Saturday. Then I remembered that today’s the LAST DAY AT WORK. Urgh! Yay!

Urgh to waking up to go to work, and Yay for it being the last time I need to do it (for a while).

7:30 AM – Flipboard

The only thing that wakes my brain up on a workday morning is either reading articles on Flipboard or listening to my favorite TV show. Today I stumbled upon an article: I quit my soul-sucking job. “Hey, my article has been published,” I thought.  A second later, I realized “Hey, that’s not my writing!!” and another “Hey, I only drafted the article in my mind.” So yeah, it wasn’t mine, but it feels like she wrote this piece for me. Thanks Kaitlin! After reading it, I was ready to face the day.

7:50 AM – I’m ready

20 minutes and I am done with showering, clothing, and grooming. I don’t put on makeup to go to work. I tell people it’s because I am supporting the #nomakeup movement, but my mom simply calls it me being lazy.

I prayed for a steel mind and a blissful day for my soul (?). Sometimes I think God doesn’t listen to me because he is confused about what I asked for.

8:36 AM – Commute

Squeezed in between as a human sardine, I have been mulling over whether to write a farewell email or not. I mean, I like my colleagues and I already had proper goodbye lunches with them last week and most of them knew that today’s my last day, so do I still need to send a farewell email? Do I share my personal email address with 115 people? What if they send me their wee wee picture as a prank or worse a love confession? Am I thinking too much? But I still have a few more stops before the train reaches my workplace.

I googled Alexandra Frazen. The lady will know what to say in an office farewell email. The lady hasn’t written anything about the farewell email. Maybe I shouldn’t either?

8:51 AM – Breakfast

Hungry. What should I have as my last office breakfast?? Pancakes. Definitely chocolate pancakes.

I ordered and tried to make a small conversation with the aunty who practically fed me every morning for three years. She reminded me of the national day promotion next week. I couldn’t bring myself to tell her that today’s my last day.

Feeling a little emo. Maybe it’s the hunger. Maybe I will come back next week to have the same breakfast and break the news to her. Again, maybe I am thinking way too much before 9 AM.

9:15 AM – Office

Reached to the office. I am late. Oh well, it’s my last day, what are they going to do? Fire me? Hehehehe…

9:20 AM – Gift

Found a gift bag from Books Actually on my table. Me likey! I took a peek inside. It looked like a notebook. Excited, I quickly kept it in my drawer. To be opened later. I guessed who it was from, and thanked them profoundly in front of everyone, only to be told that it wasn’t from them. I finally found out who the real giver was and thanked her through a Lync message instead.

9:24 AM – Email from Jik

Subject: Habah Habah

Body: I am emailing you because I can’t email you randomly here anymore.

9:30 AM -12.30 PM – Work like mad

During these hours, it didn’t feel like it was my last day at all.

12:30 PM – Toilet

I stole the executive restroom key and locked myself in. I wanted to draft the farewell email in case I decide to send it later. Last day, support, thank you, learned a lot, apology, keep in touch, future. All set, I think. I also googled things to do on your last day at work, but I didn’t do any of the fun stuff, lame!

12:41 PM – Team Lunch

The eleven of us ordered lunch and ate in the pantry. It’s very unusual, especially because the pantry can only accommodate six people. I’m sure they did it for me, which was sweet. We shared food, conversations, and laughter. The mood was definitely lighter, and now it feels more like my last day.

2:25 PM – A reminder

I stopped by at my best colleague friend’s cubicle to remind him not to send any off-color jokes to my email anymore because it has been diverted to my boss’s inbox. His reply: “I’m so going to flood her inbox with dirty jokes, you wait and see

Oh well, it’s no longer my battle. I am no longer a cubicle warrior.

2:30 PM – 5:00 PM – Work like mad (again)

I have half a mind to throw my pending works into the dustbin, but in the end, I handed them over to my colleague.

Fafa called. “One last call to this line before I delete the number” he said. I then realized I would no longer be related to these eight digits, which I have chanted more than a thousand times. I got emo again.

5:05 PM – Picture taking session

A few of my colleagues stopped by to take pictures together. I was shy but obliged anyway because again, it’s sweet of them.

5:10 PM – Goodbye

I walked around the office and said my goodbyes personally to the ones I have worked with, the ones I admire, and the ones I have formed friendships with. Got a bit more emo in the process.

5:23 PM – Work like mad (one last time)

Yes, I still had to finish a report before I left for good. Ah, never-ending things to do, I will NOT miss you.

5:32 PM – Farewell email

I finally clicked send. Farewell email, with my personal email info, sent to 120 people, and two-thirds of them were strangers.

A number of colleagues came to my cubicle to say their goodbyes, some hugged me, some shook my hand, some tapped my shoulder. Some replied to my email and some called my office line. Whatever it was, I truly appreciated their gestures.

6:18 PM – Out of Office

I asked the security guard to buzz me out. I choked when I said it was my last day. I walked out. Directionless. My heartfelt so heavy. I didn’t expect to be sad. I didn’t expect to get an overwhelming goodbye from my colleagues, either.

Apparently, there are people at work who liked me.

I texted Fafa and Jik:

It’s done. I made it through, and now I am free.”

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