A Travellerspoint blog

By this Author: travellingsofa

Life in Singapore pt.1

rain

Did I mention that Singapore is beautiful? Singapore is beautiful. Today on another rainy day, I asked myself the question, ”what would living in Singapore be like?” and ”could I see myself living here?”.

As many other people of today would do, I went to the internet. I'm here as a tourist, I see another Singapore than the people living here. After some research I found some more questions to answer before answering the previous question.

Is Singapore a democracy?

The short answer seems to be yes. Singapore is a parliamentary republic. First I went on with this, but started questioning it when I saw things about laws againt private tv broadcasting and I got really surprised when I noticed Singapore was a country with capital punishments.
So about broadcasting in Singapore, everything that broadcasts on television is under control of MediaCorp, a media company owned by the goverment. Maybe that wouldn't be the first thing to write about when talking democracy, but television controlled by the goverment makes me question the Freedom of speech which in Sweden is one of the countrys constitution.

So I went on to Human Rights. With some Google searching I ended up on Wikipedia and read the first sentence.
”The government in Singapore has broad powers to limit citizens' rights and to inhibit political opposition. ”
I'll leave it like that. This kind of questions is very detailed and politics is always a question with no right answer. So instead I'll name some things I found out over the internet.

Freedom of speech and Freedom of the press is something I, as a Swede, take for granted since it's two out of four constitution laws in Sweden. In Singapore you seem to be very controlled by the goverment. Censorship is frequently used which has resulted many journalists to self-censor.

Singapore is a country with capital punishments and is ranked as one of the counries with highest rated execution per-capita. Personally it makes me a little discouraged, but I guess these kind of topics has to do with different morals. I also happend to find out about other, I don't know, extreme punishments, things that to me sound like something that happened hundereds of years ago. Let's just not go in in detail.

This got longer than I thought let's cut it into two parts.

Posted by travellingsofa 06:29 Archived in Singapore Comments (0)

4 December

Okay, now on to today. I felt like it was time for some culture so I decided it was time to check Chinatown, Little India and Arab street out. 3 cultures in a day, oh yes I actually made it.

I went out, with my umberella ready to take action. I was lucky, it was cloudy and no rain for the moment. It's December and it's over 30 degrees, I'm so not used to this. I spoke to my parents and heard that there is still no snow back home yet.

Anyway, I managed to take the subway/underground train to Chinatown, I feel proud. I mean like I have gone by subway in Stockholm before, but as said (did I say it though?) I'm from the countryside, this is like a new world for me.

The more of Singapore I explore, the more I realize how beautiful this city is, for real. And Chinatown, no expection.
chinatown1.png
I have realized that Marina Bay, where my hotel is, is more of a ”buissness area”. Clean. Kind of bare. I should really go to other places of the island, the north for example.

I walked around the streets for a while and got really hungry when I felt all the scents from different resturants around every corner. I decided it was lunch time and found a resturant and had a great meal.

Chinatown really left me amazed and I think I will pay the place at least one more visit during my trip. Compared to the stores at Marina Bay Sands, I found the smaller cute market-kind-of-shops that, I don't know about others, but that I myself looks for abroad. I spent some money on for instance a refridgerator magnet, a souvenir I always get when visiting a new place. This one will look great next to my others at home.

Next up was Arab Street!
As the name reveals, it's a street and I decided to walk along it. I later found out that ”Arab Street” can also refer to other streets such as ”Bagdhad Street” or ”Sultan Gate”. I got to the street by taxi so I could get to the exact place that I had looked up at Google Maps.

Guess what the first thing I see is? Arriving to Arab Street the first thing I see is a Swedish flag. I had to look twice, my mind wasn't playing me tricks, there was a Swedish flag hanging there. I then notice the Swedish word ”fika” on the sun blinds. Turns out I had stumbled across ”Fika Swedish Cafe & Bistro”. Of course I had to check this out, as a Swede this felt like a duty.

The place served indeed, ”fika” but also food. When I told them that I'm Swedish they got really excited and spoke to me very friendly. I found out that the place was founded by a muslim woman who married a Swedish guy and had a major interest in Scandinavia. Today she is known for doing the best Halal meatballs in Singapore. Unfortunately I had eaten lunch not long ago so I just had a ”chokladboll”, a Swedish popular pastry.

I said bye to ”fika” and continued to walk the Arab Street. They sell alot of different fabrics but also other typical ”market stuff”. Then I got to the place that I came here to visit; The Sultan Mosque.

Suddenly I felt like I was inside an Aladdin film. I let the picture tell, I can't really describe it with words.
I took a guided tour inside the mosque, and I learned so much! Religious places speak to me personally since I'm religious myself, and I'm interested in different religions.
sultan_mosque.png

When the tour was over, it was already late afternoon and I still had one more place to visit. Luckily Little India wasn't far away from Arab Street. Just like Chinatown and Arab Street, this place had lots of ”market shops” (this has become my new word), I really enjoy the atmosphere in all of this places. I made some more shopping and then I found a nice resturant to have dinner. At nighttime there are beautiful lights everywhere.
little_india.png
Unfortunately Little India was my last stop so I was a bit tired and didn't stay too long. I took an taxi home because it felt easiest for the moment. Today I have really seen and learned a lot.

Okay I'm not good at do good endings in my posts. But I'm off to sleep now so night night! Z z Z z

Posted by travellingsofa 13:05 Archived in Singapore Comments (0)

3 December

Marina Bay Sands

Okay let's just say that yesterday ”all my problems seemed so far away...”.
No, I'm just quoting The Beatles for some reason (?) Anyway, yesterday didn't start too well, I was a bit grumpy about the weather, - rain. I then decided that I could visit world famous Marina Bay Sands.

I can actually see the building/s from my hotel, it's not long from where I live so I decided to take a walk there. (And yes I had an umberella.)
Marina_Bay_Sands.png

That place is enormously huge, no kidding. I felt like I had walked into an airport or something. I had to ask how to get to the shops. I got to the ”mall part” of the building and got surprised when the first thing I saw was an ice rink with people ice-skating. I'm from Sweden, ice-skating is something you do outside on the winter when it's at least – 20 degrees Celsius. Not inside a mall when it's around 30 degrees hot. Interesting though.

I went on to check out the stores, and I have to say if you're not a person with interests in expensive and famous brands – you should go elsewhere to shop. I'm not complaining I actually enjoyed to walk in stores I've only seen over the internet. Since there are world famous brands I can't say that there are much of a price difference here from what I know.

Oh, and I almost forgot, boats!
boats_in_marina_bayyyyy.png
Nope I haven't teleported to Venice, this is inside the mall, a canal where you can take a boat ride. It's really cute in my opinion, I just got that feeling. I didn't take a ride myself, but I did stand by the side and happily waved to people in the boats like a total fool.

I ate lunch and then went back home to my own hotel, the rain had stopped for a moment and I saw the sun. Yayyy
But I was really tired so I went to my room for a nap. I'm not used to this kind of heat, I think it's tiresome for my body. I spend some hours on my room watching Singaporean TV, and surfing the net. I'm a teenager I need internet, okay?

Then I went out to eat at an nearby resturant. I met a really nice girl from Mexico at the resturant. Turned out she had been to Sweden just last year. I even tried to speak some Spanish and she actually understood what I said.
Then I went back to the hotel. Again.

Okay this entry got longer than I thought so I'll just write about today in the next entry.

Posted by travellingsofa 12:59 Archived in Singapore Comments (0)

2 December

at the hotel

rain 29 °C

When I said goodbye to Mina at the airport I got the feeling that Hong Kong is a place I really should pay a real visit to, Iv'e put it on my mental list of places to go.
I got to my gate and not didn't have to wait that long to board the plane. Finally, this plane would take me to my final destination.

Arriving in Singapore, a new country, all alone. How exciting!
I got my suitcase and managed to get a taxi to the hotel. While in the taxi I just stared out at the buildnings, I have never seen buildnings this tall. Then I realized that this is the first big city I ever been to. I have visited some airports around the world, but never really seen a city like this. I am still at a loss of words. This city makes Stockholm look small! About 20 minutes from getting into the taxi I stepped inside the five star hotel. I have never seen a place like this, absolutely amazing. I got my room on the 12th floor. The view is incredible but I get a little dizzy standing right in front of the window. According to the wikipedia site for the hotel 3 persons have died from falling from this buildning, that's scary. But I'm sure I'll be fine if I just stay away from the window.
Around half past nine I had freshed up a bit and I went down to the lobby to find a good place to eat. Apparently the hotel have 16 resturants! How big is this place?

I then decided that I would like to go outside the hotel so I went to a place called The Singapore Food Trail which was really good! I ate ”Changi Village Carrot Cake & Char Kway Teow” and I actually liked it. It was definitely something new, and I liked it.
Then I strolled around the place a bit, and I saw the Singapore Flyer, a big ferris wheel. It's very beautiful here even when it's raining! Like, the weather is really hot but it's raining and is a bit cloudy. This weather still beats the current snow-less winter back in Sweden by miles.

But now I'm back at the hotel, lying in my king size bed, exhausted. I got a text from my grandmother and grandfather wishing me a happy namesday. I had almost forgotten it myself, but this trip is a really nice namesday present to myself.

Posted by travellingsofa 23:35 Archived in Singapore Comments (1)

1 December

– Somewhere between Düsseldorf and Hong Kong

So right know I'm somewhere in the air between Düsseldorf and Hong Kong. The long flight would be boring alone, but luckily I'm travelling with my friend Mina. She says ”Hi”. She is going to Hong Kong and while at the airport I'm going to catch my last flight to Singapore.

Mina has fallen asleep already. Hmpf. Well, I will just wake her up later *evil laugther*
Or ...I will take advantage of the moment and re-listen to BTS newest album for like the 48th time since the release. Sounds good.
The candy here is expensive just like any other flight. I should know this by now but it seems like there are some things that I'll never learn, for example that candy on flights are expensive. Oh well..

There's not much going on at the moment so I will write again when I have arrived.

Posted by travellingsofa 23:58 Comments (0)

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