Thursday, January 3, 2002

Singapore Snapshots

In Singapore I stayed with Hong, who's a friend from University, and her daughter, Yi-Ling. They live at Seragoon Gardens, outside the CBD, so I got to see a different side of Singapore life.

The photos of my last day in Singapore are still in Hong's camera. I'll be uploading these sometime in the future.

(I never ended up getting the photos. The problems we faced when we had to wait for film to be developed. Link for those born in the mid-90s and later. Deb 2015)

Keong Saik Road, Chinatown.

Because I arrived in Singapore at 1:40am on a Monday, I spent the first night in a boutique hotel in Chinatown, rather than arrive at Hong's house in the middle of the night. Boutique hotels are starting to pop up in Chinatown, mainly in Keong Saik Road. These hotels are a slightly cheaper alternative to those in Orchard Road.

The hotels retain the old Chinese shopfronts and, although my room was small, it was full of character.

I conquered the Singapore public transport system and visited the Singapore Botanic Gardens.

This turtle was just begging to have its photo taken.

Inside the Singapore Botanic Gardens is the National Orchid Garden.

This is one of the rare orchids grown there - didn't think about writing down its name. (I hereby christen them the Star-Shaped Dancing Orchids - Tony)

Another rare orchid in the National Orchid Garden.

I was very good and limited myself to only two close-ups of orchids. Considering orchids are one of my favourite flowers I could have gone berserk and used up half a roll of film (or more).

Raffles Hotel complete with turbaned doorman and Christmas decorations.

Previously, I have only stared at the hotel from the front gate or explored the shops in the arcade at the back. This time, armed with a guidebook, I walked across the front courtyard to view the Palm Garden to the right of the entrance and then wandered into the hotel gardens to the left.

This courtyard was perfect for some quiet reflection.

It was hot and muggy - normal weather for Singapore.

Behind me was an open verandah with old-fashioned overhead fans turning slowly and men discussing business over a drink.

The hotel worker was the only other person, sweeping any stray leaves or blossoms from the red tiles.

Don't think much has changed since the early 1900s.

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