I think that God must love my father and Sniffles a lot because He has given them both the impossible, i.e. me proposing marriage and He has done this through the Singapore government’s HDB policies and the crazy property boom right now. It comforts me to know that the two most important men in my life have found favour with the Lord. And it is also uncanny how things can unfold such that in a 20-minute conversation, everything changes.
But it might all have started four days ago when I suddenly received an sms from my flatmate saying that the landlady has decided to raise the rent come February. That was not altogether unexpected given the property market right now. It did come at a surprising time because I’d thought that we had a lease which only expires in June. It was only revealed to me yesterday that the flatmate never did get round to signing a contract with the landlady and it was all a verbal agreement. And it was yesterday that I realised that the flatmate had no intention of paying more for this apartment and had decided to move to her late grandparents’ old house. I was invited to do the same, and at first I was averse to the idea because 1. the location is just impossible and 2. I don’t like old houses, especially those which have seen dead old people. But then there were two counter reasons: 1. very cheap rent and 2. I can have a dog!
Then, this morning, my flatmate informed me that her uncle was thinking of selling the house in 9 months’ time. What this means is that I’ll be facing the same housing problem at the end of next year and I’ll have to move again. And I contemplated the apartment that I’m in right now. I quite like it. Was there any way of keeping it? Because there is just no way that I will be able to find something like that even at the increased rent that the landlady will be charging. So a devious plan formed in my head: my father.
I guess I was thinking of asking him to subsidise my rent and at the same time ask for his advice. Except that during the conversation I just never did bring up the issue of him paying part of my rent. I don’t know why. The words just didn’t come out. So he went through a few options with me, and as usual, it ended with “Of course the best solution is for you to get married”.
Objectively speaking, he is absolutely right. For is this not the reason why the HDB has painful restrictions on singles under the age of 35? Obviously the top brains of the nation had been picked to find ways to force independent individuals to willingly take on the yoke of marriage, so who am I to fight against it?
So yah, marriage is in the cards. And yes, it is for the flat. Yes, the worst has happened: I have completely lost any remaining traces of my Parisian experience and sunk into the depths of Singaporean conformity.