Singapore: Illustrated (Part Dua Kali LIMA)

Read Part One first.
Then read Part Two.
Then follow up with Part Three.
And if you’ve read this far, you might as well read Part Four.

So where were we? Right.

We’d just done the river cruise, and we then decided to take a more scenic route round the riverfront and check out some of the sites we saw on the cruise up close.

Just as we were about to head off down the first of many bridges along the way, we came across a guy riding in his bicycle followed by a dog. I don’t know much about canine breeds, but this one was familiar – thanks to Eddie, the dog on Frasier.

This Jack Russell terrier turned out to be real friendly. The man on the bicycle encouraged my friend to pick up the dog, and she didn’t even flinch. The bike man called her a river dog, cos she’s been roaming here for ages.

Weren't you in Frasier?
Canine capers on the Singapore waterfront

And boy, did she turn out to be a babe magnet. I have got to get myself a cute pet one of these days….

Friendly dog
The bitch and her groupies

Eventually, we parted company with the mysterious biker and his bitch, and left to explore the river. First thing we noticed, of course, were all the beautifully maintained bridges. They even kept the old signposts warning people not to exceed the allowed weight limit by bringing in cattle and horses.

You can’t take cows and horses over this bridge, nosireee

When I was researching hotels to book before I arrived, I learned that the Fullerton, along with Raffles, were among the most expensive hotels in the city-state. Seeing their location, it’s easy to see why. Btw, didja know the Fullerton used to be a post-office?

The Fullerton hotel
The Fullerton Hotel

There are also lots (and I mean, LOTS) of statues and sculptures dotted around here. Shows how much this little country values its arts and culture. I’d like to see more such statues in KL, actually….

Bronze statue of children jumping into river
Just before the kids tried to escape into the river, the evil witch cursed them to forever be bronze and pigeon-poop-target.

Haven't I seen this before?
The Washington monument?? In Singapore?? WTF??

This explains the pic on top
Ah. Ok then. So the Americans must have copied the Singaporeans, then…

Of course, the most famous statue in Singapore (besides the Merlion) would have to be of this guy. If you watched the Discovery channel documentary on the History of Singapore recently, you would have known that this man was a real visionary, a man ahead of his time, whose detailed planning led to the creation of the modern Singapore.

And yes, I’m aware that the documentary was sponsored by the Singapore government. I’m just going to go out on a limb and trust the Discovery channel people.

Stamford Raffles
Sir Stamford Raffles. The guy after whom they named the hotel, you noobs…

Victoria Theatre loading bay
Victoria Theatre loading bay. I don’t know why I took this pic – it just reminded me of prison gates.

The Arts House At The Old Parliament
I don’t know about you, but surely that’s one lame name, dude…
“What shall we name this place?”
“I don’t know, how about That White Building Near The River?”
“Nah, not enough pizzazz… how about The Place Where Boredom Goes To Die?”
“Nope, too existential… besides, that’ll just drive away the people..”
“You don’t even know what existential means, twit..”
“Shaddap, big boss Raffles will have our hads if we don’t name this place… how about The Arts House At The Old Parliament?”
“Whatever, I’m hungry, let’s just go….”

Statues of men eating
The evil witch gets around, doesn’t she? Imagine being stuck in eternity with a bowl of soup only inches away from your mouth… that’s hell.

The commercial centre of Singapore, to me, is like the very definition of this nation. Glitzy skyscrapers overlooking the calm river swarming with tourists.

Stamford Raffles in front of the commercial centre
Behold the man and his legacy

Couple taking a pic of themselves
Couple taking a picture of themselves

The pedestrian bridge going through the river
Walk towards the light… behold the warm…. fire and brimstone… uh-oh..
Actually, the pedestrian bridge going through the river

One of my targets when visiting Singapore was to check out the G-Max bungy. But wouldn’t you know it – it was closed. I know it was Christmas day, but still… you’d think there’d be more people around to pay good money to get on this bungy thing on a public holiday, right? Damn. Double damn. Hell, TRIPLE damn!

G-max bungy
The G-Max bungy. Unfortunately, no one was around.
Just. Perfect.
Closed on a public holiday… idiots..

G-max bungy - again
I guess that’s about as close as I was gonna get to this…. crap…

More statues - they're like, everywhere, yo..
This is what we call ‘a failure to communicate’. You just can’t talk to these statues anymore… not like the old days, when we had plenty of weed…

Wrapped in stuff...
See what happens when you don’t get rid of your navel lint?

We finally walked all the way to another definitive Singapore landmark – the Merlion.
By the time we got there, we were tired, hungry and thirsty. A quick drink and some snapshots later, we were ready to trudge on….

The Merlion
The Merlion. He’s been spitting into the Singapore river since 1972, although he only recently moved to his present location in 2002.

… until we reached the Esplanade, where we ducked into the cool air-conditioned surroundings to take a break and figure out where to go next. A look at some maps and brochures, and we decided to head towards Suntec City and check out the world’s largest fountain, then maybe if we had time to go to Sentosa Island and finally finish off the evening with a trip to Orchard Road.

Taking an air-con break inside the Esplanade
Taking an air-con break inside the Esplanade. Man, were we tired after all the walking…

So, they ran out of pillars or something?

Yup, just as I thought. MPH has followed me here. They’re evil.

Christmas tree
A Christmas tree.

Xmas tree in mall
A shopping mall. A giant Xmas tree. Bored tourists. Repeated everywhere around the world….

After an exhausting combination of MRT-and-legwork, we found our way into Suntec City shopping mall – which looked like pretty much every other shopping mall I’ve ever seen. We asked the information desk on how to go to the fountain, and she gave us some rapid-fire instructions which basically boiled down to: “Turn here. See the sign. Follow”.
And among the signs located round the area, we did find the one marked ‘Fountain of Wealth’.
Wealth eh? Well, if I don’t get rich off of that fountain, someone’s gonna pay for false advertising……….

Next: Checkin’ out Sentosa Island (the cheap version), a fountain, and Orchard Road


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