26th December 2019
It was Thursday. I thought it would be just another ordinary day. I went to work at Klass Engineering where I just started working as a part-time data entry image annotator not long ago. I had a few personal issues waiting for me to tackle. One of them was that my schizophrenia medicine was running out soon and I needed to call up Institute of Mental Health (IMH) to request to change to a different partner clinic that could allow payment via Medisave as my previous clinic does not provide this payment mode.
So during my one-hour lunch break, I called my case manager from IMH to make my request. She promptly found me another suitable clinic located near where I stay which allows payment by both Medisave and CHAS (even better coz more subsidy!) and arranged for an appointment with the clinic for me in the following week so that I could get my new supply of medicine as soon as possible.
Everything seemed to take place rather smoothly. But I began to notice the sky was getting darker and darker. I thought it was going to rain pretty soon. So I quickly made my way back to the office after my one hour was up.
It was around 1pm. The office seemed even more quiet and peaceful than usual. It seemed like most of my colleagues were still not back from lunch yet. But there were still a couple few people sitting at their desks. I walked to my desk stationed at a corner at the furthest end of the office right next to the window and sat down. I leaned back on my chair and looked out of the window. Something about the darkened scenery outside under the grey sky made me feel unusually calm and peaceful. I found myself staring at the Singapore Flyer at a far distance away for a long time. At that moment, my memory was suddenly brought back to May 2013. I felt as if I was sitting in the same position on my hospital bed again at IMH staring at the sunset out of the window.
But it was feelings of peace that I felt, so soothing that I felt “lazy” to start working again. I looked at the time on my computer. It was 1:09pm. I told myself I would start work at 1:10pm. So when the time changed to 1:10pm, I resumed my image annotation work on my computer again. After clicking and typing for a short while, I intuitively looked up at the time again, expecting some time to have passed. It was showing 1:09pm… AGAIN?? Shocked, I thought my eyes were playing tricks on me. So I verified the time on my phone instead. It was actually 1:11pm. Okay… maybe something was wrong with the clock on my computer that made it go back and forth.
Or maybe it was a mystical sign from the universe to tell me not to start working just yet and enjoy this moment of peace first?? Lol so I stopped and took a breather again. A few minutes later, I received a message from my friend telling me to look out of the window now because a solar eclipse was happening in Singapore! Aha I finally realised what was actually going on with the dark sky outside!
Then, I began to see lots of photos and videos of the solar eclipse streaming in on social media. In some videos, you could even observe flocks of birds flying across the sky among the dark clouds. It looked like a rare spiritual sight to me as if doomsday was coming. But many Singaporeans were excited to observe this phenomenon as it was happening for the first time in two decades and the next time it will happen again in Singapore is 2063.
Read and see more high-quality photos of the solar eclipse in the articles below:
I then thought about the mysterious time discrepancy that happened on my office computer awhile ago. I began to develop this possible theory: does a solar eclipse have the effect of turning back time? Maybe that could explain why the time on my computer was mysteriously reversed to one minute before. It could probably also explain why my mind was involuntarily brought back to the time when I was hospitalised at IMH in 2013.
Later on, I consulted my brother who studied computer engineering whether such reversed time phenomena can happen on a computer without you manually altering it. He said I might have seen the time wrongly. Or it could be possible that the frontend clock display and the backend system were not synchronised. A few weeks later, I witnessed the same thing happening again on the same computer so it could be an existing minor fault with its clock display. But it was still mystical for me to witness it, nevertheless.
A few weeks after the solar eclipse in Singapore, on January 11th, Taenggu released a teaser for her new song “My Tragedy” (Korean title “월식” directly translated as “Lunar Eclipse”). It’s a song that compares the painful heart of a breakup to a lunar eclipse.
According to some sources, it seemed to be deliberately planned to coincide with the penumbral lunar eclipse that was going to take place in Korea on the same day. (Source: https://www.vercalendario.info/en/moon/south_korea-11-january-2020.html)
My solar eclipse, Taenggu’s lunar eclipse… Could they be a reflection of my tragedy of getting (mis)diagnosed of schizophrenia in 2013?