Saturday, February 23, 2008

Malaysia - Singapore and KL

Singapore might have been the highlight of the trip for me. I was wondering while I was there if everything seemed so amazing because it actually was amazing, or if my take on things is a little skewed because I've been living in a little town in the Philippines for two years, taking cold showers out of a bucket. I didn't come up with an answer, but I'm still pretty convinced Singapore is freakin' amazing. Much like Malaysia, Singapore is mostly made up of Malay, Chinese and Indian, with a pretty good sized ex-pat community and apparently millions of white babies, all being pushed around in strollers. What the hell was up with all the white babies? The city was sparklingly clean, well planned out, had amazing public transportation and green everywhere. Open spaces, parks, trees... I think I'm a little too easily impressed at this point. It was definitely a taste of the 1st world, since Singapore is a pretty rich country. Income-wise they rank in the teens worldwide, above countries like Germany and France, so there were lots of nice cars, well dressed people and the like, kind of an Southeast Asia-lite.The food was top-notch, just like Malaysia, and the beer expensive. They also have a lot of laws that they enforce, including a weird one about chewing gum. Apparently you can get fined for having it, as it is illegal, to which I say right on because if I sit on one more piece of gum, I'm going to bomb Wrigley and blame it on terrorists.

This is a hawker stall area in Singapore. There are maybe 40-50 different places to chose from here, each one with something different(ish). It's kind of like if a mall food court didn't suck, but instead was full of amazing, cheap food, and wasn't in the mall.

Why can't everywhere be full of roast duck?

Having a beer at the boat quay, waiting for the museum to be free (Fri night from 7pm-9pm).

Top of an Indian temple

There was something going on at the temple while we were there, so as the parents talked the kids roamed free...

Temple of 1000 Lights

Renovated Chinese shop houses in Chinatown, now selling really expensive clothing.

Amazing temple door art

We ended up staying in the Muslim area (called Kampong Glam), which was probably my favorite part of town, and home to great middle eastern food.

Singapore had a great botanical garden, but it was free and open from 5am - midnight, so it was more like a city park. Never the less it was huge, and beautiful, and quiet. Ah, quiet.

The best part of the park was the orchid garden. I am by no means a flower nerd, but they were pretty spectacular.


Paula said...

who you trying to kid, Owen? We all know you're a flower nerd! ;)
Beautiful pictures and sounds like a great trip. A possible reason for all the white babies - affordable nannies.
lots of love,

Anonymous said...

so glad you posted a new comment! The trip sounds awesome and the pix are really professional!
I think Paula's idea about the nanny is likely to be the reason, but did you see white adults out and about or is there a terrible baby smuggling scheme going on there?