Saturday, October 27, 2012

Musings on Singapore...

Some tips I have learned from our travels to this tropical rain forest, Singapore.
  • If you are a warm person, or from a cooler place than the tropics. Cut the makeup down to a minimum. Clear mascara...waterproof won't cut it. Lots of antiperspirants, bring extras because I've had some melt before. Yes, melt! (FYI: Just about everything melts!) Forget the lipstick and stick with chapstick which holds together better, and make sure you take lipstick out of your purse as it will melt the instant you leave the airport.
  • Buy good sandals. I purchase a new pair for every member of my family. A few weeks in Singapore equals about a whole summer's worth of wear back home.
  • Buy shoes at home and bring with you. I am about a size US 8 and that is like Sasquatch here. They have to go to the back to find shoes for me...a little embarrassing. Though I must say, that some shoes here are so cute that they're worth the embarrassment of sitting next to little size 4 footed women.
  • Standard US bra sizes are also  big here...and they also have to go to the back for those bras. But if you are any larger than maybe a C? You probably won't find a bra.
  • As soon as you get here, run to one of the many little bakery/bread shops and pick up a pork floss bun or a croissant, even a donut. Put in a fridge if possible and then when you wake at 2am with jet lag, you will be able to eat something.
  • Mosquitoes, geckos, and cockroaches happen. Bring bug spray, and not that wimpy stuff. I'm talking DEET! The geckos like to chirp all night, and if you get one in your room...well, bring ear plugs and try not to think about it.
  • The lighter the clothes the better, but beware of strapless bras. Even the best-fitting one is likely to slide down your sweat-slicked body and end up as a belt. Not a great look.
  • Do not leave the flat/hotel whatever without: A bottle of water, lots of tissues (there are no napkins in the food courts...and sometimes no toilet paper in the bathrooms), wet wipes, gum (it's illegal here so be discreet!), sunglasses, camera, and a plastic bag. Don't ask about the plastic bag...just bring it.
  • Another note on the gum. Bring the kind with the hard shell, regular gum melts into a gooey puddle in your purse. ick.
  • Another word about the toilets. If there is a long-line (and there often is) sometimes your kids will get you ahead in the line...sometimes they won't. Either way, even if your bladder is the size of a soccer ball, don't try the squatting toilet. Just don't, it's not worth it, it takes skills we haven't honed this side of the equator. Your shoes will thank you.
  • Watch out for swinging doors, elevator doors that shut whether or not someone is in between them, and escalators that want to eat your shoes. (Shi lost a chunk off the sole of hers)
  • The traffic comes from the opposite direction here, so be careful when crossing the streets. I look both ways because I still can't be sure where the cars are coming from.
  • Watch out for bicyclists. They have bells, they don't always use them. I have been run into before.
  • For foods, Exotic and tropical fruits are cheap here, but most everything else is expensive.
  • You can travel by taxi, train, bus, or walking. The best way is probably a taxi. The train is very crowded though it's neat to get an elevated view of the city. The bus is very lurchy and makes too many stops. Walking is hot!
  • Follow the natives. From seeing which food stalls have long lines and which are avoided to following their paths to avoid the sun...whcih might involve walking under the MRT (train) or through the grass.
  • Umbrellas are nicer than a hat at keeping the sun off you.
  • Don't try the durian, or do. I'll leave that up to you. I can eat it if I plug my nose, but then I can't stand my breath afterwards so it's not worth it!
Just some things I have been thinking about. :)

1 comment:

doo said...

Love your way with words!