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SINGAPORE | Saturday, 11 August 2007 | Views [1180]

Ah the wonderful sunset created by smog

Ah the wonderful sunset created by smog

What images does Singapore evoke for you?  Skyscrapers, cheap electronic goods, tiger beer, Raffles, a former British colony, a well placed island?  I had an 8 hour journey from KL to form an opinion.  Strict rules, clean, modern, diverse and just starting to test its nanny state reigns. My friend Jamie said it was the safest place he's ever felt.  I now know what he means.

I arrive in Singapore to find it's another National day - yet another country celebrating its independence from Britain.  Just like Kuching, I'm not sure my arrival is timely.  Lots of people, full hotels - or in this case hostels as this city is expensive, but celebrations and street displays.  The streets were heaving this night, the closest i came to the action was a big screen TV showing what i was missing - i would have seen more watching the TV at the hostel.  This was all about atmosphere though and there were 100,000's of people out and about, all like me hoping for a glimpse of a firework or a skydiver.

What hits you straight away is the cleanliness and orderliness of the city.  It has a million and one rules, but look at the end product!  Great architecture, pristine streets, fantastic shopping malls, trains that run regularly and on time, low crime rates, good bars, cafes and restaurants, pleasant parks, islands and people.  I've got music again and I've got a city to walk around.  This place feels hip, happening and in a hurry.  It's got a vibe, a pulse, an energy I can't help but respond to.  It's time to run around town, see the sights and shout out my love of being alive.  This place fills me, I love it.  The mix of cultures, the fact that things work, the cleanliness and the music.  I can't believe I'm only here for 3 days  Alas it's another case of having to get an onward ticket and spending longer than I'd planned in KL.  Perhaps it's for the best -this place is expensive, especially when you visit Sentosa theme park of an island with beaches, dolphin shows, an aquarium, rides and cuddly toys.  I have a great but surreal and expensive time...how am i going to cope with Indonesia after this?

I have to come back to this place.  I've never been a city person so do i love it only because I've spent so long away from feeling the home comforts of clean, safe and comfortable.

Tags: island, wildlife


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