Singapore: Day 1

As I sit here, shivering under my kotatsu in the middle of a chilly Japanese winter, I can’t help but think back to the warmth and humidity of the winter vacation I’ve just came back from.

My kotatsu – the thing that I run to whenever I get home from work.

Between December 24th to January 8th, I was in Singapore for a third of those two weeks — so a good 5 days or so (give or take an extra evening). I’d already been to the Marina Bay area the last time I had a 16-hour layover at Changi Airport, so I don’t have any photos with the Merlion this time around.

Narita airport, and ANA planes

It was my first time flying on ANA (All Nippon Airlines), and I was very impressed. The service, the food, the quality of the blankets and the pillows… It managed to surpass my experiences with Qantas Airways (which were also excellent). Around 7 hours after I left Nagoya Chubu Airport, I arrived in Singapore.

Apology cakes from someone who was late…

After a stormy reunion with my friend at the airport, we traveled with one of his brothers and his cousins to a Christmas Eve family gathering on the opposite side of the island. There were an alarming number of new faces that I was introduced to and would never remember, and then we watched a bit of that Justin Timberlake movie “In Time” (bleh). At the end of the gathering, we (my friend, his parents, brothers, cousin, and me) crammed into a car and drove back to their 11th floor apartment in Hougang. (I have a hard time pronouncing that word.) A few hours were spent re-connecting to the world via Facebook and Skype, and then it was time for bed, and the end of my first night in Singapore.

Things I learned: 

  • I cannot pronounce Hokkien and Malay words
  • I am really bad with face memorization, and I am really shy in a house full of strangers
  • Justin Timberlake should choose better movies to be in