Posts Tagged ‘Singapore’

5 Continents in P6 Pt. 1: KL and Singapore

Sunday, January 27th, 2013

The day after graduation, we went to Kuala Lumpur to visit some of J’s family. We went there for just a few days and didn’t really do anything except eating, meeting her extended family (lots of aunties and uncles) and hanging out.
After that, we came back to Singapore and spend Christmas Eve and Christmas Day there. Most of our fellow students had already gone home, but a few were still there so that we could spend some more time with them. On Christmas Eve, we had a very nice traditional Polish Christmas dinner hosted by a German/Polish classmate of ours with her husband, who also had her family visiting and invited us and two other students. We had a very nice time together, and it was again quite sad to have to say goodbye to some of our friends that evening.
The next day was our last full day in Singapore before checking out of our apartment and leaving for Australia. Since we had two bottles of champagne in our fridge from various occasions, we decided to invite a few of the remaining people over for a champagne breakfast. They brought some food and another bottle of champagne, and we hung out half of the day, talked and drank champagne – a very lazy and nice way to end our time in Singapore. After having parted for the afternoon, our three guests came back in the evening to have some dinner – and thus ended our time in Singapore.

(Belated) Chinese New Year

Sunday, February 26th, 2012

Wow, it’s been a while since I last posted. Tells you something about the business of an INSEAD student’s schedule. A lot of stuff has been going on in the past month, and I will try to catch up in the next days by giving a few impressions about some of the things that happened.

Chinese New Year started on 23 January, so we are now already a month into the year of the Dragon. CNY is a really big thing in Singapore, Monday 23 Jan and Tuesday 24 Jan are public holidays, even though most malls already opened again on Tuesday. Monday is also the only holiday on which INSEAD students in the Asia campus get a day off – all other holidays, whether national or religious are ignored due to the high pace and intensity of the program. The actual CNY celebrations went on for about two weeks, and all the streets and shops were decorated. There was even a traditional CNY performance by the pool in the condo I live in… Some impressions from the night 22-23 January in Chinatown (during which it actually poured) and from the performance follow.

MacRitchie Reservoir and TreeTop Walk

Monday, January 23rd, 2012

In the midst of the urban metropolis of Singapore lie areas that still contain jungle-like forests. This Sunday allowed for some time to visit one of them, the MacRitchie reservoir. The MacRitchie reservoir is Singapore’s oldest reservoir and thus one of the sources of Singapore’s fresh water. The forests have well-marked trails which are easily accessible by car or public transport: The forest literally starts directly behind some residental areas.

Walking through the forests is really beautiful and peaceful: The temperature and climate is a bit less exhausting in the cool shade of the trees than in the concrete jungle, and you can hear all kinds of forest animals such as birds and loudly chirping insects. The forest also houses wild monkeys, which are quite tame and were sitting, jumping and climbing through the trees by the trail, and also squirrels that were jumping through the trees. In addition, there were many butterflies and huge ants (3-4 cm in length!).

The MacRitchie reservoir area also contains the HSBC TreeTop Walk, which is a 250 meter long suspension bridge for pedestrians. It stretches over a valey full of forest, and at eye level with the tree tops you can see the reservoir lake and the forest in all directions, but also in the distance some highrises or factory chimneys.

Altogether, it is amazing how this modern, thriving city has managed to treasure and preserve these areas of nature, which make you feel as though you were in an altogether different place. A visit is definitely a recommendation for any Singapore tourist!

Some pictures follow.

Singapore Zoo and Night Safari

Friday, January 20th, 2012

The only free day in between two six-day weeks of classes, last Sunday allowed for a little time to explore Singapore, specifically the Zoo and the adjacent Night Safari. Singapore Zoo is really amazing, a large area located on a peninsula within the Upper Selatar Reservoir, one of the large artificial lakes in which Singapore catches rain water to fulfil the fresh water demand (even though Singapore still has to import most of its fresh water from Indonesia or Malaysia). The Zoo has many animals, especially those from warmer regions such as Asia, Africa, Australia or South America. The animals are roughly grouped by their respective regions, and you can easily spend a few hours strolling among the different enclosures.

The Night Safari is located just next to the Zoo and is the first one of its kind world wide. Open from 19:30, it allows seeing animals in more natural surroundings. The animals aloso live in (quite spacy) enclosures, but they are only dimly lit by lanterns, providing an entirely different atmosphere than that of a Zoo. Visitors quietly wander through the tranquil park or take the tram ride which takes about 30 minutes and during which quite interesting information about the animals and their respective habitats is provided. Before entering the Night Safari, I was actually recruited – more or less voluntary – to take part in a fire show that was displayed for the visitors. Most of the time I did not really know what to do, someone gave me a flare and then took it away again, told me to stand here or kneel there, and in the end they pretended that I actually put out the flare with my mouth. It was good fun 🙂

But enough of the writing, better see for yourself! Some pictures from the Zoo follow, in the Night Safari it was too dark to take good pictures.

Getting Settled

Thursday, January 5th, 2012

Yesterday, I arrived in Singapore from Malaysia. Still with only the backpack and no clean clothes after four and a half weeks of traveling, I was happy to have a clean room, a shower and a washing machine again! So far I have settled in quite okay. Today, I have also been able to pick up the parcel I sent to myself at the Singapore BCG office – with a certain amount of luck, it only finally got delivered yesterday (after more than four weeks on the road and in various Singapore post offices…). The parcel looked really battered, but all my stuff was still there and nothing broken. So now I am looking forward to starting at INSEAD next week!

© 2012 – 2018 JF Goetzmann — Impress