Man, I’m terrible. It’s now the end of April. I created this video I’m about to post 2 months ago, in February. And the video was about part of my trip to Singapore in January. But, in my defence, it’s been a busy few months since I got back from vacation in mid-January. First, I started a course online, studying for which ate up a lot of my free time. Then of course, over the past month especially, as the ramp up toward summer begins, things have gotten really busy.
But now, the course is over. And a couple of milestones for the Spring has been hit at the Church (namely, a concert that I was responsible for, Holy Week, and just this morning, our Spring Members Meeting). May is actually looking like a relatively chill month, starting with our annual Regional meeting in Edmonton this week. Which incidentally, also marks the 1-year anniversary of the Wildfire Evacuation. So I’m going to take the time while there’s a bit of a breather before things start ramping up again in June, to close of this chapter in my life… my last vacation to Asia. Haha.
According to my last blog post, which was on December 31, 2016… I left off my posting while I was still in Japan. I arrived in Japan on December 28, after leaving Fort McMurray on Boxing Day. I didn’t do much the first day I was in Japan (except visit an AWESOME RAMEN SHOP in Chiba), but on the second day, I finally visited Tsukiji Market and Itoya in Ginza, before hitting up my other usual spots in Tokyo (like Akihabara). The next day, I started my trip north to Tohoku, the video of which is in that last blog post. After that trip I spent a couple of more days in japan before flying to Manila, via Guam, on January 2. But that’s as far as I’m going to explain in this post. I’m actually going to go backwards to those last couple of days in Tokyo, starting with my side trip to South East Asia, with the last stop in Singapore.
So I did this side trip to South Asia thing as a protest against Duterte. Normally this “side trip” would have been my trip to visit another part of the Philippines (this year should have been Dumaguete). But frankly, Duterte’s election and the huge support he has among Filipinos made me lose my appetite to explore the Philippines any further… Maybe in 6 years. So I did the next best thing. Explore the neighbouring SE Asian countries. The first stop was in Malaysia, followed by Thailand, then Singapore. But as I said I’m narrating this backwards…
So I arrived in Singapore on January 14. I was kinda tired. My flight from Thailand wasn’t super early… but my hotel in Phuket was pretty far from the airport. So I think I was out of bed by 6am or so, picked up at the hotel by 6:30am and at the airport by probably 8am for my 9am flight. The flight it self wasn’t too long… just under 2 hours. But I arrived in Singapore to a bit of confusion… plus a lot of walking in their massive airport. Anyway, it took me about an hour to get out of the airport, which meant I already behind for my first stop: The Old Airport Hawker Centre. But no worries, I finally found the subway and I was on my way.
My problem: I bought a smoothie that I was drinking while looking for the subway. So naturally I brought it in to the subway with me. Probably 10 minutes into the journey as I took in my surroundings, I noticed I sign near the door stating that there was to be no drinking or eating on the subway, and especially no garbage… punishable by something like 500 Singapore Dollar fine (almost on par with Canadian Dollar). So naturally, I freaked out, remembering the Singapore is basically an authoritarian state where chewing gum is illegal. By then I had finished the smoothie, so I quickly stashed the garbage in my bag, and hoped the cameras didn’t catch me.
Finally, after maybe 30 minutes on the train, I found myself at the stop near the Hawker Centre. Although I would need to walk maybe 10 more minutes to get there. Not a big deal. Except IT WAS HOT. Also it was sunny, and pretty much high noon… But I sweated on and finally got to the Hawker Centre… which was everything I had hoped for and more. I don’t think I can do justice to what I experienced there. So I’m just gonna go ahead and let the video speak for itself…
Well that’s all for now. Next time, I finish up Singapore, and maybe get a little in to Thailand.