Monday, December 22, 2008

Welcome to Singapore

My first day in singapore and the air didnt feel alien at all. It was the same humid sulty weather of Bombay. The ride from the airport to the city was like a drive through Nariman Point with tall towers, though the roads were cleaner and much wider. Day one and I was stuffed with the delicious and sumptious meal of Singapore Airlines (I am a fan now). Hence dinner was at Starbucks, just a Bananarama muffin, spinach and cheese quiche, both of which were huge in quantity and a coffee.

Day two and I got onto the net looking for real estate brokers. Lunchtime and I was hungry. So I hit the roads and went walking around the place. We had landed up at friend's condo in River Valley Park. Cars went zipping past, though the streets were sparsely populated with very few pedestrians. People on the streets mostly wear shorts. The tinier the better. I felt overdressed with my denim pants. But they dress very elegant. Theres a lot of skin show, but done tastefully. People going to work wear the latest designs, and are always "in". Men have mostly spiked hair, gelled and in place, while women have silky smooth straightened hair, again gelled with not a strand jutting out. Footwear is always neat and attractive, and the elegance is maintained by one and all without exception.

Travel is mostly by the MRT trains or SBS buses. Both are airconditioned, smooth, comfortable and extremely convenient. Public transport is the way to go in Singapore. It is definitely a far cry from the much crowded trains in Bombay. People respect your space, and very rarely does a hand brush past you, even accidentally.

Sat night orchard road was all lit up for xmas.people singing and dancing on the streets. Playing music on exotic chinese instruments.Floats, tableaus, and people in crazy costumes right from Alexander's army to little Indian girls playing Dandiya on a tamilian song. Well, Christmas is a time for forgiveness I suppose. It was a carnival atmosphere and this is the weekend before Xmas. Im waiting to see the street on Xmas nite.
People thronged the malls for their xmas shopping. Long queues outside Gucci left me flummoxed.

Singapore is a foodie's haven. Though the vegeterian is left short of options. Vegeterian here, means vegetables with fish. Indian options are few and far.
The one place we all agreed upon was Spize The Makan Place at River Valley Road. The Nasi Goreng here was delicious, and we even found the perfect sambhar with the Veg Biryani here complete with appalams, the South Indian pappad. Another vegeterian speciality of Singapore is Prata, which is a very light, thin, flaky roti, served with all kinds of combos - cheese mushroom prata, garlic butter prata, even cinnamon honey prata. A regular meal with a fruit juice would cost you around 7 - 9 SGD

The Toast Box at Food Republic on Orchard Road, was quite interesting. They served traditional Hong Kong toast with a variety of beverages. The Otah Toast had an interesting spread on a thick toast, which went very well with the Tea, very similar to our chai.

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