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about the land and the people

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notes from singapore

February 24th, 2013 by sophie · reportage, singapore

funny story. my sister is planning a trip to amsterdam and we were talking on the phone about travel guides. so while we were speaking, i sat down in front of the bookshelf and had a look at the guides i own. i got two of these wallpaper city guides from phaidon publishers and started to wonder, if you get them in germany as well. i bought them in new zealand for my trip home. i had one stopover in sydney and one in singapore. while talking to nina, i started to browse randomly through the city guide for singapore. you know the empty pages you can find at the end of almost every guide, right? so the wallpaper city guide has them aswell… but they were not empty… i was there for just two days, had no company, noone to talk to, so i guess i felt like i had to tell about my impressions and wrote them all down in my city guide. funny thing i didn’t remember it… so i thought, maybe it could be interesting for you to read them, thats why i am going to typewrite it. and you get to see some pictures of my trip aswell. enjoy!

they sell coffee machines at starbucks. and they got starbucks at almost every corner downtown. it is warm and wet and if it starts to rain, you will be totaly wet within 20 seconds. the raindrops are huge and they feel fluffy and warm! the people in singapore pass you everything with two hands, otherwise it is rude. and you have to take it with two hands as well, but i think they forgive foreigners if they are rude, cause they probably just dont know about it. they have impressive umbrellas which they share at the trafic lights. most of the malaysian girls are very beautiful but appear like they have no idea about their beauty.

i life in little india, a very popular district of singapore. my first impression of little india was at 12am. walking to ‘mustaffa shopping center’. 24hrs cheap-cheaper-cheapest!! if you enter the center, be aware, it could be possible that you will lose at least 15 minutes of your lifetime to find the exit again! little india is as much beautiful and interesting as scary at night. walking through this district was a bit weird at the first time. i was the only white girl between a lot of dark skinned people, something i never experienced before.

the nationalities of the people in singapore are pretty much a pottpurri of the asian world. as different their origin is as different is their behaviour aswell. the malaysian people are extreme friendly.. smiling and speaking an amazing good english. i experienced the indian guys more quiet, less chatty but still friendly.

i didnt get to see much of singapore during my two-days stay. most of the time i walked around without knowing where i was going and taking a lot of pictures. when i felt like i want to go back to my accommodation i looked at the pictures on my camera, compared buildings and streets and in the end i made my way back like that. i met two different worlds in one city. little india was my first impression and so different to what i exspected from singapore. there is much life going on, people having dinner on the street, many different smells, food courts, garage sales, music and people socialising or just going shopping at night.

in australia and new zealand people use to text while waiting for a bus or walking or even driving… in singapore they call each other, wherever you look, there are people talking on the phone.

orchard road and the city center, the other side of singapore. orchard road is the main and well known shopping mile. one big shopping center next to the other. high society shopping, prada gucci, calvin klein, versace… whatever you want and how much your budjed allows. something else i recognized was, that there are suddenly a lot of europeans and americans on the street. orchard road is probably the world they know and thats why they like it…

rain in singapore is very special. if it starts once, it almost lasts forever. it is like a flood from the sky and it suddenly gets very dark aswell. 

cabs are everywhere, they have different colours and drive very fast. the first person i talked to was the cab driver on my way from the airport to the hotel. very patient he answered every question i had about singapore. he told me that they have no seasons, it is always warm in singapore, just in december it gets a bit more rainy. he also told me that i have nothing to worry about when i am alone on the street during nighttime. and indeed, people were never rude, just sometimes they were watching me while i was walking around and taking pictures. in little india, men used to say a special word to me when i passed them, i cant remember it but i know that it was irritating me, because i had no idea, if i was just a disturbance for them and they maybe just wanted me to take off. once a man stopped and asked me, if i know the word and if i understand the meaning of it. he told me: “it means you are a lucky woman and people around are very lucky!”





photographed by sophie daum

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