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Direction & Misdirection

After seven solid days on set, the persona that is Sergeant Derek has at least been fleshed out. Among other things, he is the custodian of weapons and their accessories, and he counts, inspects and logs in a cell-like room with many locks. His job allows him some licence to be obsessive-compulsive. (In many ways, he is reprising another role.) He tries to be strict and injects sternness into his tone of voice and expression, but he does not play this role well because he is generally too happy and too approachable to be seen as the disciplinarian. Once, a black mood took him, and since then, the recruits have been careful; the storm signs can be seen from a long way away. So they push the envelope. Sergeant Derek also leads songs and cheers, although sometimes he can’t help but feel as though it is because no one else can summon up enough belief to not feel ridiculous. He would do better to get more in-character.


Sometimes I feel like I am crossing over from one world into another while on the ferry. Whichever direction I go in, it feels as though the fairytale evaporates and leaves reality as the product, even though I am usually leaning more towards one side than towards the other at any given time. Still, it is disorienting.

Earlier I took the train straight down to City Hall pretty much on impulse; when I realized that I was walking along the track the day after the race, and that I only found out who won by glimpsing the front page of a copy of the Straits Times in Starbucks, and that I’d spent race weekend worrying about logbooks and learning operating procedures, I felt as though where I was then was in many ways as far removed from the other reality as I could be, and I was unnerved by how forcibly I had reoriented myself.

I have two days before I have to re-orientate, that is, face east; having to constantly do that can’t be healthy, since it means that I’m mistaken about my direction about half the time.

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