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Whiskey in Singapore & the Casio Alarm Chrono

February 2014, a Westerner finds himself on a fortuitous temporary assignment assembling an international operation as an employee to his company in Singapore, otherwise known as Adult Disney World and the coastal metropolis of Sydney, Australia.

Eyes wide open to a previously foreign corner of the globe and new remit he finds himself on fourteen flights over this eight week period back and forth between the two countries, including stops in Bangalore, Delhi, Bangkok, and Hong Kong. With the acceptance this is a time limited opportunity all the while his wife is trudging through her first trimester back stateside i.e., this is the last trip of its kind (ever) he ensures to set aside moments to experience the people who are what make these iconic cultural hubs globally revered.

On an evening run by the Singapore River, still in the sweltering heat he stumbles upon La Maison Du Whisky by Clark Quay which is in effect south central Singapore. He makes note of the location and finds himself there at the end of the week…and then at the end of multiple weeks. On occasion, his principal, an established French expat who once ran a company from his catamaran while he traveled the globe would accompany him, though largely he found the barkeeps and fellow patrons perfectly suitable.

This was the type of intimate speakeasy where frequenters had their own bottles stored in the cabinetry, a venue so accommodating they let you play your own tunes. The kind of place where all you needed to do was share what type of drink you were in the mood for and trusted their creativity. This was also where on one of these evenings this culturally adapting traveler noted what was on the barkeep’s wrist, a Casio Alarm Chrono A158W, a fun reminiscent throwback to the aesthetic of digital watches he remembered from his childhood in the ‘90’s granted this reference started circulation in 2009. He'd come to know Stephane and the others who worked the bar over the course of time. They had all those qualities a good bartender exhibits: curiosity and composure, a seemingly endless memory of your preferences, patience all the while confidently running the place. Moments later, in appreciation of his comment the watch was graciously gifted to him where, “no thank you, I couldn’t” wouldn’t be tolerated. Reality is, it wouldn’t have mattered whether it was some version of a low number limited edition high complication haute horology exit watch. It was about the gesture, the surrounding experience, that he now would take the experiences had and add to them abroad and at home.

When I look down at this watch, which nine years later is still powered by the original battery and forever in Singapore local time I am instantaneously brought back to my time there. I smell the smoke and see the haze from the surrounding palm oil plantations of Indonesia and Malaysia, the chili crab enjoyed with partners, to this bar and that generosity. Not knowing a watch’s provenance has some mystique to it, I'll give it that, but if I could only wind back and ask a few questions…

That experience to me is the essence of what we are creating with one another, but with some aspects improved. I’ve no foresight into where Capsule 2 of the Founder’s Edition will land, under what condition, with what experiences memorialized and this is intriguing. What I’m most excited for is building a community alongside you that will do some good and help remind how what we do with our time matters.

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