Dear Fellow Members,
As we approach the holiday season, let’s take time to appreciate the blessings and respect the challenges everyone faces in life. While we always hope the holiday season brings a sense of love, comfort and happiness for all, the reality is that, for many, the holidays are a time when a kind gesture and loving support is needed more than ever.
Growing up in farmland Illinois and celebrating the holidays with extended family in even more rural areas of the United States (where my grandfather would actually go out hunting to catch the Thanksgiving turkey each year), my holidays were always more about being together as a family and less so about the materialistic aspects of gifts. My family has a simple (and strict!) rule in that once you turn 18, we do not buy gifts for each other, ever. We spend our money on experiences, vacations, and visits, as required to be together throughout the year and, especially, the holiday season. I attempted to give my father a “joke” gift of WD-40 one year for Christmas and, to put it mildly, I got into a lot of trouble as a 30-year-old adult for “breaking the family rule”. I have been extremely blessed to be married now for almost 15 years to a woman who also shares this belief in investing in mutual experiences and lifetime memories. This, to me, is what the holiday season is truly about. Invest in your family, enjoy time with loved ones, and look for opportunities to help those who are less fortunate.
As for our The American Club family, we have a busy and exciting few months ahead. Robert and the Team are doing a great job in scheduling events and opportunities for all to enjoy and we, the General Committee and Management, encourage everyone to participate in everything the Club is offering during the months ahead.
As my wife is Hindu, I especially look forward to celebrating Deepavali in November. One of my favorite aspects of being an expat in Singapore is that we get to learn about, and celebrate, so many holidays which stem from so many different religions and cultural backgrounds throughout the year. I encourage everyone to be open to learning about (and celebrating) all the upcoming holidays, such as Hanukkah and Deepavali and Christmas, as we come together as an American Club family to uplift each other during this festive season.
In closing, the world currently has no shortage of conflict and war. Let’s lead by example and strive, day by day and through our individual interactions, to continue to treat each other with love and respect.