I’ve been taking public transport in the morning to work for slightly more than a week now.
My Dad’s car has officially reached the 10 years limit and needed to be scrapped. In Singapore, owning a car is expensive due to high COE, road taxes, ERP, parking fees, patrol, insurance etc. One should easily need about 1K a month to own a car. My Dad’s salary is less than 2K and he struggled to pay all the bills. Sometimes I helped out whenever he needed the money. My Dad bought the car back when I was 15. Back then, COE wasn’t too high, and a red plate doesn’t requires as much money. It was not too bad. We enjoyed good rides from my Dad for a good 10 years. 10 years later, the COE flunged high up, so much so that my Dad could no longer afford that simple luxury.
Well, public transport here in Singapore isn’t too bad. Other than the mornings when I took a ride from Dad, I usually take the public transport. But in the recent years, there has been an influx of population from all over the world, so much so that taking the public transport means having to squeeze with people. It wasn’t pleasant all the time.
I have this sudden surge of feeling when we finally need to bid goodbye to our car, a car that has served us well, bringing the whole family to places every time. It’s like a breakup. But after much serious thought, it isn’t the car that I’m missing so much. It’s the kind feeling I get when I have a great father who always took the extra mile to drive us around, and the bonding time we always have in the car.
The car may be gone, but my father is still here. We now take the public transport together in the morning to work. Occasionally we chat on the rides. Nothing changed except that now we walk a little bit more to catch the train and stand a little bit longer when there’s no seat available. The short ride in the morning, regardless of the vehicle, is always a good time to bond.