Saturday, June 22, 2013

Singapore Day 1

Breakfast is 2 roti pratas (folded-dough flatbreads) with spicy curry gravy. Jay drops us at the little shopping complex near the church. We usually treat our students to breakfast at Mr. Prata, so we head there. Tastes yummy! W planned on butter chicken, but it wasn't ready yet. Another time!

Jay takes us back to the flat after we buy drinks (Chinese herbal tea for me), apple cider vinegar, water bottles, and tissues. Everyone takes their own tissues, used for everything from serviettes or toilet paper, so we usually hit a drug store as soon as we get here.

I have a short afternoon nap while W catches up on tech and info. Then Taylors drop us at Tampines Mall. We eat Korean BBQ at the 4th floor food court: my fish is grilled, as is W's chicken. It comes with a bowl of broth and sides of rice (with curry gravy over it), cabbage salad, and a fried egg. Yummy.

It's crowded at 6:30; families, singles, and couples are crammed on the seats. We wander the aisles looking for a place to sit down. A big family pats two empty chairs at their table and chatter to us in Singlish. After being here multiple times, it's easy to understand most people. [Here's a sample of Singlish: this Singapore blogger is funny. He suggests solutions to the terrible haze from the fires burning across the straits in Indonesia - and responds to comments by an Indonesian politician that Singaporeans are "childish" for protesting the smog.]

We walk home through the streets and under buildings. Every block of apartments seems to have a gathering place, and little vendor shops tuck away near sidewalks. People sit outside eating and talking. Someone's hosting a funeral meal in one of the open areas under the next block. There are masses of flowers, banners, and incense wafting over the walk.

W's white hair contrasts to the dark heads around us. With my blond hair and fair skin, I stick out wherever I go. Toddlers stare at us with looks of amazement. Maybe their parents will scare them into obedience by remembering us in a monster story.

We're asleep by 9pm. Good night everyone!

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