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Bad decisions make good stories. And I always have a good story.

Category: Photographs

The Epic Life of Nigglet Ng

I usually don’t announce or post about pet deaths because it’s very depressing even when they’ve lived a long and happy life. But I feel like Nigglet deserves a tribute because his life was more happening than the average human 🤣 Been meaning to post this since he passed away in his sleep at a ripe old age a month ago (not sure of his exact age).

No need for condolences and I’m fine 😊 I just wanna share his epic life story with everyone. I mean, how many people can say they:

  • Got dumped on Carousell
  • Travelled home in a box
  • Found a wife
  • Fathered 8 kids
  • Suffered a broken leg
  • Nearly killed his son

It all began in July 2018 when my brother came across this listing on Carousell:

syrian hamster

The photo looks nothing like Niggie so I’m not sure if that’s even him 😂😂😂 My brother went all the way to Pasir Ris to collect him and his ex-owner placed him in a shoebox. And Niggie was such a good boy even then, accompanying my bro on the bus ride home without a fuss. I think he was a few months old and his most distinctive trait was his nuaness.

On the same night, I brought Jojo (white female Syrian) home. Little did we know what we were in for!

black syrian hamster

In his shoebox, dark as night 😈

Actually we named him Momo (cos Momo Jojo) but it never stuck cos it just didn’t suit him. Then my bro started calling him Nigglet which somehow became Niggie and it stuck very well. Sometimes we also called him Nuaggie because he was so damn nua.

All my hamsters have their ‘official’ names and their literal ‘pet’ names and nonsense nicknames 🤣🤣🤣 Like Jojo became Jochilla because she was sleeping like Godzilla one time.

Anyway, Niggie was an imp in his early hamster years! Forever trying to escape, chewed my brother’s wires until the speaker broke down, chewed out leather stuffing from our beds.

teddy bear hamster

There were a couple of mornings when we woke up to find him out of his cage 🤦‍♀️ Even when you make adjustments, he would find a way. Another distinctive trait is his never-give-up attitude, which is very admirable and worth learning from.

All good until one day…

He escaped and fell into Jochilla’s cage!!!!

syrian hamsters breeding

When we awoke one morning, he was already inside her cage. I’m not sure how long he was in there but thankfully, no fights and Jochilla appeared asleep. So I assumed nothing happened.

Side note: Please do not keep hamsters (especially Syrians) together because they will either fight to the death or breed, both of which are NOT ideal.

can syrian hamsters breed

I now pronounce you man and wife 🥰

What happened next aside, I thought it was the cutest and sweetest thing 🥺

After this encounter, Niggie continued to try escaping and if I remember correctly, he went to visit her once more. But nothing happened this second time and that was the last time they interacted. Though I feel like he never forgot his wife and was constantly trying to find her…

Anyway, fast forward two weeks and one night we realised Jochilla was pregnant 🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️ She was gaining weight but her behaviour was normal so we didn’t think much of it. Until that night when I realised her stomach was quite hard and her nipples were quite prominent lololol. The gestation period for Syrians is around 16 days so she was actually almost due already.

The very next afternoon on 26 September 2018, she gave birth 😂 I think there were at least 10 pups (which is considered a lot wtf), but she ate 2 – 3 (very normal). We were blessed with 8 beautiful babies.

syrian hamster breeding

This photo was taken when the babies were almost one month old and just before I separated them from Jochilla so that she could have her confinement rest 🤣 The whole thing was the most incredible experience ever but that’s a story for another day.

The whole time his wife was busy caring for their kids, Niggie remained blissfully unaware and went about his life as normal.

tuxedo hamster

I love his white paws (they look like gloves on him) and his white chin (search for ‘tuxedo hamster’). This photo was taken in April 2019 and you can see his fur turning brown.

Then came Labour Day (May 1). Niggie escaped again but instead of reuniting with his wife, he fell into his son’s cage! When we woke up, a terrible fight had already happened and Niggie was licking his wounds at one corner.

The fight seemed to have stopped only because Melon (white male Syrian) had gotten stuck in his hideout’s entrance in his panic. He was still panicking and struggling to free himself. We ended up having to cut open the whole hideout.

Melon was not injured but very traumatised. Niggie was quite badly injured but his demeanour was still the same: Chill and nua 🤦‍♀️ There were blood stains in the cage and I cleaned both boys up.

injured Syrian hamster

My bro holding our ghetto rat afterwards. Does he look bothered to you?? 🤦‍♀️

Brought Niggie to the vet on May 4, where he was given oral medication and cream for his bite wounds (a big one on his thigh and a big one on his back).

We also did an x-ray that cost $200+ and he was found with a broken leg. The vet was very worried (especially over possible bone infection) and recommended surgery but I didn’t go for it. I generally avoid surgery unless there is no choice because small animals do not react well to the anesthesia and stress.

hamster vet

hamster vet

hamster broken leg

Ever since then, he walked funny but he would have told you, the limp never bothered me anyway~~~

And oh ya his name is registered as Nigglet Ng at the vet.

hamster injured

In his carrier to and fro the vet.

hamster carrier

We returned to the vet for a review twice more that month and the doctor was damn amazed by Niggie’s recovery. She kept exclaiming how well he was doing and I was very proud of him.

Some lessons are learnt the hard way, while some lessons are never learnt, period:

black syrian hamster

Still trying to escape after recovering and despite his bad leg!!!! I’m not sure if he wants to find his wife or continue the duel with his son. Here you can see how one of his ears is chipped from the fight… 🤦‍♀️

In August 2019, history repeated itself and he ended up in his son’s cage again 🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️

Half of Niggie’s nose was like… gone. And he hurt his other leg (I think, cos he walked even funnier from then on). Some minor bite wounds/scabs if I remember correctly. The amazing thing was his legs aside, he was back to normal (both looks and behaviour) after a few days. He had a bloodied hole where his nose was but even that healed fully. Can’t help but feel like he has regenerative powers sometimes.

Melon, on the other hand, had a serious bite wound on his back that got infected and he had to go back to the vet a few times. He is currently two years old as I’m writing this.

black hamster

Not a single damn was given and Nigglet Ng continued living his epic life.

Anyway, he mellowed a bit after that since he was getting on in age and did not cause further drama other than the occasional mischief e.g. chewing things, running away and hiding under the fridge and prompting an hour-long search etc.

cute syrian hamster

Although he walked a bit funny and didn’t use a wheel, he led a normal life like any other hamster.

Sometimes he would have fur loss but regenerate new fur. Sometimes his fur would go from black to brown to black to brown. The only thing that he did not regenerate was his chipped ear. A very extraordinary hamster indeed.

male syrian hamster

You can see his fur looking sparse here due to old age and his leg bent funny but #nofucksgiven.

Sometimes I feel like he lived so long because of his heck care attitude, being nua and not stressing over anything 😂 He was also the most appreciative boy because whatever accessory or hideout I gave him, he would use it. And he was perfectly content with his simple but cosy cage setup.

sleeping hamster

Soon, he reached his golden years and spent most of the time sleeping. But he remained in great health the whole time, which is rather unusual considering his havoc days and compared to my experiences with past hamsters. They sometimes struggle with old age but Niggie’s transition was amazingly smooth.

hamster sleeping

My ultimate good boy 🤣🤣🤣

sleepy hamster

Looks like a baby sucking his thumb 😍

black hamster

Very whiskery and wise-looking. I find it interesting how his looks constantly changed throughout. Does this look like the pitch dark rat we brought home? 😂

syrian hamster playing

Sometimes he would still come out for playtime.

cute hamster

Sleeping in a funny pose.

A long and vibrant life until I woke up on August 1 and realised that Niggie has gone over to reunite with his wife and kids (yes this fella outlived most of them; 6 out of 8 I believe) 🌈

We wrapped him in a towel with his favourite food and treats, and buried him the same night.

Here lies Nigglet, a superhamster ❤️

The (Drunk) Girl On The Train

…Is not me.

Was on the train home on Friday night, enjoying my book with my airpods on, totally oblivious to what was unfolding before me. When I looked up, there was already a yellow sea of puke on the floor. Thank god for masks cos I couldn’t smell anything.

blackout drunk

The girl was totally passed out and unresponsive, her head just lolling about and both legs splayed out.

There were a few people around her so I tried to place them. A helpful off-duty nurse whom I initially thought was MRT staff. The guy I wondered whether was an onlooker helping out or her boyfriend.

They were wiping the girl’s face and moving her hair back. The guy also tried to hang a plastic bag under her chin but couldn’t get it to stay in position. He tried to wake her by tapping her cheek (the strangeness of this gesture was why I thought they were strangers) but to no avail.

After awhile, he carried her out of the train. That’s when I realised they were acquainted. His face was also very red so I suppose they both had a lot to drink.

passed out drunk

The puke remained there throughout my journey.

Anyway, my first (lousy) thought was to judge her. I even had the cheek to think ‘I might have broken a tooth but at least I have never…’ until I recalled all my own pukey times from years ago (haven’t reached this extent in a long time, thankfully).

Then afterwards I was judging him because ‘if you are her boyfriend, then you shouldn’t have let her drink this much’. But I realised that when someone is determined to do something, it is actually very hard to stop them. All those times when we know when we should have stopped three glasses ago or left the party an hour ago but didn’t. The best you can do is to just keep them safe.

I also felt that it was very nice of him to take care of her and deal with this despite all the eyes on them. Made me thankful for all the friends who have done the same for me (though I’ve only reached this stage of being unable to go home on my own once, when I broke my tooth).

Then I thought about how it is very easy to judge people but we don’t know what they are going through. Maybe her parents are divorcing. Maybe she just had a breakup and this guy is her friend. Maybe she had a particularly shit day. Maybe she just needs to mask the sadness. We don’t know.

Anyway, hope they are fine. I think they will be, other than her waking up in a pool of regret and self-loathing the next day. But every day is a new beginning and one bad night does not define you.

As for me, I’m surprised and almost in disbelief at how well everything is going. There’s so much to be thankful and happy for every day. I feel like my hard work is paying off and it’s all just very rewarding.

I also realised that there will always be things needing to be done and I should just live in the moment. I mean, I used to like finishing everything so that I can stop thinking about them and go do my own stuff. But things have changed (not in a bad way) and that ‘100% free’ mode is no longer possible (for now).

For awhile, it made me whiny and seem ungrateful. But now that I have changed my mindset and eased into a routine, I feel very content and capable and productive again.

Like, I planned to just shut off for the whole of Friday evening. Was already out when some stuff came in; one marked urgent and the other due that very day. Decided to stay chill and enjoy my evening anyway. If it’s not life and death, it can wait a few hours. Completed the tasks at 3am. Watched Neflix till 5am. Work me, social me, and lazy me all are happy.

All of these has been very enlightening. Of course, I’m very lucky in the sense that everything is flexible and pretty much up to my own planning.

Recently, I even tried sleeping earlier and waking up early for a few days and felt really good. Less groggy and more productive. Too bad it didn’t last long because I started a new K-drama and I can’t stop watching at night. Maybe I will try again.

I should stop using sleep as a tradeable commodity. More work to do? Just use the time meant for sleep. Because I refuse to use time meant for my hobbies. Which is very wrong but I cannot stop when I’m in the middle of a good book or show.

But again, it’s an arrangement that works for me. I just feel very fulfilled right now. Maybe because I stopped being so hard on myself all the time. Don’t feel like running then don’t run. You want that overpriced cappuccino then just get it. You want to be a hamster fanatic then just be. You like that pic of yourself so just post it even though everyone thinks you have no pants on.