11 August 2009

44th Singapore

"I don't like Singapore, it is a rotten place as is indeed every other town. I am simply crazy to get away again."
1903, William Louis Abbott.

Two days ago I went to the city to feel the euphoria of Singapore National Day. I've been here only for 8 months (still considered as tourist?), so I need to see how people celebrate it. First I made a stop in Suntec City to have lunch on one of the restaurants there around Fountain of Wealth. It is the world largest fountain, with colorful lights at night (see pictures below I took a month ago).


When the big fountain is off, we can come in to the small fountain, go around of it and touch the water while making wishes. They said our dreams will come true (still not sure of it, because friends have already did it and not proven until now :P). Actually I have visited and seen this fountain many times, but never have the chance to do this ritual. So I did it! Not like there's something I wish for, but only for spending my time waiting for friends come. After finish, you could buy photo of you're turning around the fountain for S$10.


If I'm not mistaken, the theme of National Day this year is to show how Singapore ready for any terrorist attacks. When me and friends ready to go to see National Day Parade or F16 or fireworks or whatever they offer on that day, it's almost evening and the enter ways to Esplanade area and Marina Floating Point (where the ceremony held) were already closed, but on the way there I still got the chance to see President helicopters group carrying the Singapore flag, and some F16 aircrafts.


Many ways were blocked there, and fucking damn hectic fulled of people (berdesakan sama India/Bangla yang keringetan dan bauuuu *pingsan*). We decided to just go home. But on the way to Raffles Place MRT, we passed Asian Civilization Museum, I came inside by myself while my friends went home. I actually planned to go there (and some other museums) on this long weekend when the entrance fee is free. I found it was a good idea to went inside to enjoy the quietness and spookiness of night at museum, exploring Singapore history on its National Day. Some interesting things I found:
1. Bencoolen (one of street name in Singapore) is actually derived from Bengkulu, one of province in Sumatra, Indonesia.
2. Long time ago along Singapore river, the boats have two eyes on the front part (picture below), it is their believes that the boat can see so is not going to strike.


3. I just like this miniature of the old times coolies place (sorry for the lack light of my blackberry camera)


At 8.22 PM, big exploding sound heard from outside, I peeked to the window, ah the fireworks starts. It's just stunning (as usual, Singapore fireworks)! And they recited their National Pledge:
We, the citizens of Singapore
pledge ourselves as one united people,
regardless of race, language or religion,
to build a democratic society,
based on justice and equality,
so as to achieve happiness, prosperity and
progress for our nation.

On the silent museum window where I stand, there was a museum guide girl that (I claim she is Singaporean because she) also recited it with soft voice and clenching her right fist to the left side of her chest (as a gesture to symbolize loyalty to the nation). I am touched :)

After the fireworks, I started to look around the museum again, still got so many things to see while waiting for the crowd outside vanished. The museum would be closed on 10 PM, I planned to go home at that time. Apparently many people thought the same thing as me, to hide inside the museum first until the crowd finished, because suddenly the museum filled up with many people (and kids were so annoying and noisy grrrrr!!). I came to the main galleries that show history and culture of Asia especially in Southeast. So it's not only about Singapore, it's about Java, Minangkabau, Malay Peninsular, Bugis, Dayak, Thailand, Vietnam, China, Islam.... ahh there are so many articles I wanted to read! I just realized that I love museum.


In ACM from 25 July to 21 Sept 2009, there is Southeast Asian collections in Hunters and Collectors gallery. It's collection from some world hunters such as William L. Abbott and many others (just knew about them, I think they're famous). One of them is maniac of magic, had owned the Museum of Magic and Witchcraft at Castletown, Isle of Man. Superb!

Well, happy birthday Singapore! Although like Mr. Abbott said, I plan and might get away again someday (to explore the world), but it is nice living here :)

2 comments:

  1. your english is very good, i learn much from your blog, keep writing :)

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  2. Glad you enjoyed our little singaporean display :))

    ReplyDelete