Lilypie - First Birthday

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Singapore


OK, this post is after I discovered the wonders of Picasa collage maker. So much more convenient to blog when I don't have to upload pictures one-by-one. :-P

Leo and I flew to Singapore via AirAsia last Friday (15th Jan) to attend my friend's wedding. Ye Hsin was my secondary schoolmate/ Leo Club member back in the old school years. Actually YH and I weren't really close when in school cos we weren't classmates, but after graduation while putting up in Si Min's house on weekends in KL we just clicked, and here I am, as her jimui, eight years after we last saw each other! Her reception was held in Hilton, Orchard Road. Thanks to her invitation, I had the chance to visit Singapore for the first time. Well, technically this is the second time, but I wouldn't count the time where I was locked up in the Year 2000 Leo Forum resort as one. The reason why I never visited after that? Well, Singapore is always there, a little speck down south and it never occurred to me to visit. Everybody seemed to give me a jaw-dropping reaction though when I told them that it was my first time to Singapore. :-P

Singapore Impressions

One. Singapore is like, so green!! Sitting in the back of the Mitsubishi Lancer as Leo's Uncle James drove us from Changi Airport, I had the impression that I was cruising through a garden city. Leo said it's like Penang's Greenlane, everywhere! Huge, leafy, lush green trees everywhere with the highways with no jam entwined neatly in between, creepers on the walls, rows and rows of blooming bougainvilleas, everything was clean and well-maintained, even the foliage. Not a fallen leaf in sight.

Two. Maintenance. Walking out from the aircraft into Changi's Terminal 1, it really didn't feel like an old terminal at all. Compare that to our Penang airport. Everything is so clean that you can roll on the floor and not need to bathe afterwards.

Three. There are no hawker centers and Indian stalls smack in the middle of the road and no jaywalking and no dirty old men and no double-parking and no stupid motorcyclists zooming dangerously in-and-out of the traffic. And all the cars on the road are kept spotless and new. And their roads are really clean! All their hawkers are relocated into foodcourts at the HDB flats or into malls. Jaywalkers are fined, double-parking cars are fined and stupid motorcyclists causing havoc are fined. As they say, well, Singapore is a FINE city! And, I didn't see any dirty old men anywhere, everybody is young and thin and dressed very well and walk very fast. It was like all the old people were kept hidden away, somewhere. And there was a whole lot of angmoh! Malaysia is really losing out to Thailand and Singapore...

Four. Need to walk a lot if you don't have a car and need to live in a flat. Well, actually, it is really inconvenient if you don't own a car nevermind which country you are in, but imagine if you work in Singapore and you have to save money and not buy a car and have to hand-carry all your grocery items: Dynamo, dish-washing liquid, apples, toilet paper roll all the way from the shopping center to the MRT and walk back to your flat. And the lift only stops at a few floors: 1, 6 and 11. Sucks if you had to stay on the 3rd floor cos the rent's cheap. But you will slim down helluva lot faster. And as for flats, the older HDB flats are larger, around 1200sf while the newer ones are a lot smaller, around 700sf, although their designs look nicer.

Picture below: The right one is the new HDB flat design, looks nice right? But really small so people usually prefer to buy older flats. The left one is a condo which few people can well-afford in Singapore. We stayed at Ee Geok & Uncle James' place which was a 10-min walk away from Buangkok MRT station.

Five. No, I haven't ended yet. Singapore is such a short distance away from Malaysia. I always thought that it would just be like another state or something. But the reality is, it is such a different country from ours! Everything is so efficient here. The residential area is so clean and safe and bright even at night, and you don't have to worry of getting mugged here when walking back late at night. And Singapore feels like a mini-USA filled with Chinese, cos all the signboards here are in English and everybody speaks English and the shopping malls are filled with products and brands that are so canggih and uncommon in Malaysia. But is is funny to have four different languages as their national language because almost 80% of the population there is Chinese.

Singapore Flyer

After resting a while in Uncle James place, we took the MRT out to City Hall to wait for the Funvee bus to go to the Singapore Flyer (giant ferris-wheel). I was a bit frustrated for the wait because we had just missed the first Funvee by an inch. It was nice to sit on the open-top bus and go around the city area, very touristy, I enjoyed it very much. Saw the Fountain of Wealth at Suntec City.


The Singapore Flyer ride cost around S$44 after 25% off Citibank card for 2 pax. We almost had a capsule to ourselves (private capsule cost S$1000) but at the last second another couple walked in. Dang! One rev took around half an hour. We kept on taking pictures of the same view, the Esplanade and the Floating Stadium, over and over again.


After the Flyer, we took the MRT to Clarke Quay to meet up with the girls, some of which I hadn't met for 10 years since graduating from high school! OMG, Nicole, Jia Hui and Lee Sian. My usual girl gang, KK, Si Min and Chiew Yun were there too. While having dinner at a fish-and-chips place called Fisherman's Wharf near Central, we talked and talked a lot about boyfriends, ex-boyfriends, the lack of them, different types of fish, marriage, career, travels, Romania and vampires and Singapore and etc. It was amazing to see all of them again. But too bad, I forgot to take a group photo with my camera! *Boohoo! ;-(


After that, Leo & I walked around Clarke Quay to check out the clubbing hotspots, hot S'pore chicks, the beautifully lit-up river, G-Max reverse bungee and the unusual Turkish ice-cream seller. The Central mall is great! So many unique things to see and buy! I must visit again sometime!


4 comments:

Janice said...

I agree with you so much on what you think about Singapore! It's exactly what i think also. Everything is so organized!

Chen Jie@陈杰 said...

kawan, i though same month wedding, pantang one ?

Xweing said...

Cos both my friend & i don't pantang... :-)

Fang Fang said...

welcome to singapore..