It was probably the coolest thing I did in Singapore. I went up in the Tiger Tower. We have something just like it at the fairgrounds in Oklahoma City. It’s a tower that goes up into the air some 150 feet and then rotates around a couple of times and then takes you back down to earth. It’s pretty neat. It also only cost me around $8 to go up the one pictured here. The views were great. It’s located on Sentosa Island, which is a playground area on the south side of Singapore.
There is a very famous hotel in Singapore called the Raffles Hotel. In it, there is a bar called the Long Bar and this bar is the place where a cocktail called the Singapore Sling was allegedly created by a bartender. This is all legend or hearsay or so I’ve read. What I can testify is true is that there is a Raffles Hotel and it does have a bar named the Long Bar and it does serve a drink called the Singapore Sling. What I can’t testify to is what the drink tastes like. I’m not much on cocktails, being a beer drinker and all. I’ve never had a Singapore Sling. Especially not at the Long Bar in Raffles Hotel where the drink costs a little over 20 American dollars. I hear you get free peanuts, but even that wasn’t enough to begin to start to tempt me…
That’s me at the Merlion statue. A Merlion is a creature that has body of a fish and he head of a lion. It was, at one time, a symbol for the city of Singapore. This was a hotspot of tourist activity. Everyone came for the photo opportunity.
It’s an ice-cream sandwich. I bought it off of the man with the cart in the background. It cost me 70 cents. It’s the first one I can ever remember seeing. What he had was a large piece of "bread" that was really more of cake mixture than it was regular bread and in the bread he placed a nice sized chunk of ice cream. There were various flavors available. I had chocolate chip. This was the best ice-cream sandwich I’ve ever eaten. Until I got one the next day. And the next. I’m going to miss those guys with the carts who sold ice-cream sandwiches. I wonder why Singapore is the only place where I’ve ever seen them…
Singapore has a reasonably decent skyline as viewed from the waterfront area called the Esplanade. I did go down among all the big buildings and stroll around a bit. Many people referred to Singapore as "just another big city" but I saw it as something else. I didn’t see trash in the streets nor did I ever feel threatened in the city. People driving vehicles stopped for pedestrians in cross-walks. People didn’t jay-walk like they did in other cities. I saw a very clean, well landscaped, urban environment that was orderly and appeared to be a model city. Plus, I found out that they don’t really take you to jail if the toilet police catch you not flushing the toilet. It’s just a fine of $300.
They call it the Singapore Flyer. I heard many of the residents refer to it as The Eye. I think it may be modeled after the London Eye. It’s one of those large machines that have observation platforms attached to them and the go around like a Ferris Wheel. I was told that I could have dinner on the thing for about $200 a couple. That might be a good way for a young man to impress a young woman. Then again, I can think of better ways to spend $200 than to have dinner 450 feet up in the air. I should have taken a ride on the thing, but I’ve been in one very similar to it before.
These are the two machines at the Singapore Visitor’s Center that tired visitor’s with achy feet could use to try and restore some of the vigor they had lost during the day to their feet and calves. I had never seen machines like this in Tourist Information Centers before. It was a nice touch. I didn’t try the machines to see how well they worked. Maybe I should have. Next to the machines was a water dispenser that dispensed c-o-l-d water. That machine I tried.
They were everywhere. This is a picture of devices used to sink some sort of pilings into the earth to support another high-rise. Everywhere I went I saw evidence of another new building going up. Behind the construction equipment is another high-rise residential building of indeterminable height that looked to be almost new. My guess would be 25 to thirty stories, given the fact that the building in the foreground is ten stories. I wondered how all the money for the construction was being generated. There was a lot of new construction in Singapore.
I went into the Singapore Visitor’s Center without high expectations. I left an hour later with a packet of brochures and the proverbial "wealth of information" about what to see and do in Singapore. I can also remember what they told me at the hotel where I stayed when I asked what time the Visitor’s Center closed. "About 10 PM, I think." said Benjamin, the young man behind the hostel counter. I was amazed that any visitor’s center anywhere would stay open that late. They were a government agency, weren’t they? didn’t they close at 5 PM like government agencies did almost everywhere else?
This is the train ticket machine in Singapore. It is very sophisticated. It is relatively easy to use. I liked using this machine. The problem was that there was often a line ahead of me to use the machine and tickets could only be purchased in a machine like this one. Sometimes the machines went "out-of-service" like the machine on the right.