Singapore By the Bay:
After experiencing that unique side of Singapore, I guess the next visits weere more of the usual ones. I visited the Harbourfront area for a couple of reasons, the first was to check out if there were any events happening at Esplanade (the last time I was there there were free performances) and to eat at Gluttons by the Bay. Unfortunately, there were no performances (I guess the last time there was a Lunar festival event) and Gluttons by the Bay was closed for that day.
So I just walked around the area and took pictures of probably two of the most common scene that people take of Singapore, the Merlion and Marina Bay Sands, I already had shots of these landmarks but this time I had a (knockoff) gorilla pod with me and a different lens.
After taking the shots, I decided to just walk all the way back from Esplanade to the hostel. I loked at Google Maps and saw that there was a path that I haven’t really explored that was near the river. I think it was around the Boat Quay/Clarke Quay area. I wasn’t exactly tired but I decided to just sit by the river with a drink in hand and just look at stuff. Emo I know but it was a pretty good change of pace from touring.
Food, Friends, and Frisbee:
I think aside from the tourist spots, one thing that people would do in Singapore is food trip. Being home to a mix of cultures, you really get to have a variety when it comes to food.
While at the hostel around midnight, I went to the pantry to just have a snack. While in there, I saw two korean girls who were eating Bakwa (a sweetened jerky). I offered them my chips and they offered me their meat (not exactly a fair trade I know). We also chatted a bit using our phones to translate and we ended up by adding each other on Facebook (this would play a big role in my Korea post).
I met up with another friend, Zhengning and this time we went to a Kaya place (for the life of me I forgot what it was called). Kaya is a very common snack (breakfast?) in Singapore. It usually consists of toast, kaya spread (coconut jam), egg (dipped in soy sauce), and coffee or tea. As for the coffee/tea, you would usually see Kopi (coffee) or Teh (tea) with a letter. I found out that:
Kopi/Teh O– Black Coffee/Tea
Kopi/Teh C – Coffee/Tea with milk
After chatting for a couple of hours or so, Zhengning had to leave so I had time to wander again. I actually came across people playing Ultimate at Hong Lim park. I just stood around and asked to join in and they allowed me to. There was a Filipino guy, Philip, who happened to be playing and he actually was able to catch a highlight of me. Here’s an instagram clip instead (look for the blue green pixel wearing number 14)
I washed up after Frisbee and headed over to the Maxwell Food Center, home of the Tian Tian chicken rice (made famous by Anthony Bourdain, I guess). However, when I went there, I was actually planning on eating at their competitor a few stalls away named Ah Tai. Apparently, Ah Tai is run by a relative of the one who put up Tian Tian. I bought the chicken rice and some lime juice and proceeded to try Ah Tian. My verdict? While Ah Tian is good, I still think that Tian Tian tastes better. You can’t go wrong with either though, so just go with whichever stall doesn’t have a long queue.
I had an evening flight back to the Philippines, which meant that I had some time to spare. After hanging out with Lena for her homecooked brunch, we headed over to the airport. I was a tad early at the airport so I explored around. Despite being there for a couple of times already, it was only during this trip that I realized that Changi airport actually had an entertainment deck. They had video games, a theater, and even a sunflower garden!
After Hanging around at the airport for a bit, it was time for my flight back. On the plane I realized how uncommon this trip was. While I did explore the country, I think this trip was defined more by the people I met on the trip. There was Lena who took me around uncommon areas in Singapore, Zhenging who was someone I met years ago via penpals, and the other people at Wink, especially the two Korean girls..
Of course, you can’t always count on meeting new people and having a great time when you travel, but it may be a great idea to put yourself in positions wherein you would be able to do so.
This is part 2 of the post about this trip, click here for Part 1.