Thursday, September 3, 2009
Snippets from Singapore
23rd Aug 2009: 13 Carpenter Street was relatively calm. Standing by the window as I sip the hot coffee, a cool breeze pours in…it disturbs the elevating steam from the coffee mug…. I look down, there is an unusual quietness on the road…it is also quite unusual of me standing by the window and sipping the coffee.
This is my 3rd week in Singapore and it marvels me to know, that I don’t need the morning tea or coffee, to get off my bed laziness. My body clock has been faring extremely well, even without these caffeine doses.
Call it a change of place or the change of routine, but a break from monotony surely works.
My thoughts are interrupted by a telephone ring…..its Nishith, I know…
“Nishith”, with an “H”, “people generally have the habit of leaving it on “T”….his trademark punch line, something that I have heard a dozen times now.
He is my colleague from India, who has accompanied me to Singapore, and this call is to remind me of the city touring plan of the day. Its weekend time and we have some plans. …His intentions are to rest for the day, which means I accompany my Boss’s son to the Snow City, Science Centre and Singapore Flyer. So well and so good…got 1.5 hours in hand to get ready and reach Raffles Place MRT. …which means, this snippet ends here, the only thing that I can think of now, is,
“Does my store card, have sufficient value in it?”
There have been many such snippets and numerable thoughts that inspired me to write….but what didn’t help them develop into a complete blog post, was my lack of efforts and understanding of threading them together.
The other day, I was in the company of a Jordan native, an Indonesian Hotel mate, and an Indian Colleague, discussing an entirely new side of the island city. What started off in a lighter vein gradually headed towards a host of serious issues, bringing out an entirely dark side of the city. The issues were strong enough to drive each one of us participate in the discussion.
Looking back what surprises me, is the uniformity of thought that blossomed despite the geographical and cultural diversity of the participants.
Courtesy and Hospitality is something Singaporeans practice with ease. On the day of departure one gesture made a distinct impact on my return journey. I had hired a cab for Sin Changi Airport. Tucking in the luggage and after the final good byes as I got into the cab, the cab driver enquired:
“Maam, just checking, since u are heading to the airport, u got your passport and ticket with you?”
One simple gesture, a simple question showing his concern, made me feel escalated. Clark Quay to Sin Changi was 25 mins drive. Throughout the ride, I tried to feed my feelings with words.
The feel could not be the result of the driver’s gesture alone. His generous words of concern, just added flavour to the already simmering moments of thrill…the moments that were bringing me closer to my country, my family, my people…
As the cab moved forward, I could sense a part of Singapore receding behind….
Lots more to write, a lot more to share. Many snippets remain unstitched, and they all form a part of a different story, different experience in Singapore. The link is missing, for me to add them with the above.
Attempting my best, to enjoin the missing links and shape them into a concrete memoir.