Posted by: Larzizou | October 1, 2008

Singapore

What comes to mind when the word Singapore is uttered ? Maybe, a soul-less (a) consumption palace led by (b) dictatorial rules set on (c) ultramodern, man-made artificial grounds. Let’s see.

Starting with (b) : a steep 500 euros fine for riding a bicycle where it should not…

… to make sure you get it, interdiction written in four different languages…

… and I am not even mentioning the fines for spitting in public spaces or the legal prohibition to be naked in one’s apartment (and rewarding of denunciation). Friends of friends have experienced police officers showing off at their door after hanging around naked after showering.

Every single of your move is tracked and monitored. A grey box is attached to all vehicles in order to ensure prompt payment of tolls.

Continuing with (a), consuming food is my favorite hobby. I am told about the Beaufort gourmet all-you-can-eat brunch and all-you-can-drink champagne. Quite pricey, but priceless after so many months away eating junk food on a daily basis. Ok, I may be  slightly exaggerating but I had a crave and elected to indulge. It did not disappoint. Seafood I could not eat before, keeping kosher…

… neither could I devour baby lobster and foie gras (the kosher one is bland, at best) …

… and finally the dessert. Pastries that made me feel at home. The chef is French. Cooked to perfection some Herme-like macarrons.

Stuffed, I need a few hours at the pool to recover from such a feast.

(c), you see, so modern that free internet awaits you at disembarkation at the airport.

Tackling the transport issue, it does not get better (and pricier) around the world than Singaporian long distance buses. Note to the reader – I took buses, ranging from 20 minutes to 30 hours on the five continents. Sits equipped with personal TV screens, reclinable to 170 degrees…

… and for the more upmarket version, which I did not opt for, see below.

The architecture is vertiginously vertical and…changing. Singapore keeps building and rebuilding itself every few decades or so. The ambient humidity does not do good to the constructions.

Sometimes, it yields interesting, if quirky, and colorful structures. Above the police precinct near Circular Quay.

Some more city colors.

Some more shots of the Quay, where some of the nightly action is to be had. Do you notice as well the star-trek motives ?

It looks like these cups are about to take off.

The river is refreshing amidst this concrete environment, be it painted in pastel colors.

Better than that is the sea. The very minute we arrive, we are husked by Claire’s roommate (Claire is still in Bangkok), Laure, to the marina and rent a speedboat…

… for a wake-surf session. In case you are not familiar with it, quite similarly to wake-surf, the speedboat draws you behind except that your feet rest on a surfboard and are not tied to it. Whenever you get close to the boat, you can free your hands and continue cruising. How so ? By riding on the perpetual wave created by the motor helix.

Laure, the girl scoot.

Remouz prefer to lay rather than stand on the board. The water temperature is close to 35 degres celsius.

Sunset comes inevitably. Given Singapore is sunny 365 days a year, a quite common hobby here.

And Tristan is quite skilled.

Remouz, getting ready.

Almost there…

… and finally there. It took three tries.

Vendor machines are not quite like we know them in Paris.

Everybody I hung out with – that is, exclusively French expats – seemed pretty positive about living in Singapore. The party element is not germane to the assessment, I believe. Fun is often around the corner in Singapore !

Here, having a ball at Mc Donald’s.

Sunny Sundays, everybody that is (hardly) anybody congregate at KM8, a beach bar with a swimming pool (think Nikki Beach in St Tropez), flowing champagne, bikini dancing underage models… Obviously, the sand has been brought from other parts of the world.

Although I did not feel like getting drunk a Sunday evening, I could not leave Singapore without having tried KM8 famous Sarong Fly.

As the night kicks in, fire dancers show off…

… and Remouz too wants his share of Sarong Fly.

Drunk models dancing over the swimming pool, people expats faking having fun… Boring at best.

I/We accept the above charges and agree that BrusselSprouts will not be liable for TAKE AWAY items hereafter. I find such a disclaimer on the bill fantastic. The rest of my party… not so much. There must be something wrong with me them.

The rest of my party : Claire and her boyfriend. Tristan, Laure and Celine hidden.

We stop en route to Malaysia. In the restroom, right above the urinoir, this poster. It reads as follows :

“You are well aware of haricare products. You are probably using face care products. But what about private care products ? While many men are placing more emphasis on their outer appearances, they continue to neglect where it matters MOST.

Directions

Gently massage a small amount of the formula on the genital twice daily, one to three minutes each time to achieve the desired results.”

What desired results ???

Paris is a leading fashion capital, I know. Outside of France, Alain Delon embodies (old) French, and by extent Paris. But really, Alain Delon cargo pants ?

Other things you need to know about Singapore :

– chewing gums are only sold at pharmacies and you need to leave your passport number to get some

– Everything is clean, the grass is manicured

– Cars are taxed 300 percent. A Mini sells for 90 000 dollars.

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