Christmas at Singapore 12.23

We arrived here yesterday at 6:30 pm in Singapore Airlines which, so far, is the best flight I’ve had ever had. They’ve got good FREE food, comfortable seats, nice ambient interiors with a bit more elbow room, and lots of good entertainment to keep you distracted. That’s the main thing about airlines. The best airlines have the best distractions: the latest movies from every genre in a variety of languages and cultures (They even have art house films!), the latest TV shows, music (I immediately went to the jazz section and found that it was still filled with good music as music gods intended it to), and, perhaps the coolest of all, Nintendo games. I played Pokemon Silver for most of the time I wasn’t eating or reading. Apart from that, I just listened to my jazz.

The best airlines have the best distractions to keep you from flipping through the pages of in-flight magazines and newspapers over and over again; from fidgeting and staring at everyone especially the pretty flight attendants, from thinking that it’s the most horrible experience of your life to other people ever, which will make the airline lose passengers, then money, then employees, then jet fuel money, and then the planes themselves, until they’re left with a few people who wanted to have a business which deals with getting people to and from places through the sky.

This is what people miss, I think. Or maybe this is just my inexperience talking. This is my third time flying in between countries and flying never ceases to amaze me. Sure, it doesn’t hold my attention for long when it’s just cruising comfortable across the sky, but the noticeable changes in speed, direction, and altitude (and the things that pass by the window) makes me wonder at this strange phenomenon. People are built to walk on land, after all. I wonder if I’d lost that sense of wonder. Maybe not. I hope not.

Anyway, we landed on Singapore at around 6:30, December 22, at Terminal 3 of Changi Airport which is a fine terminal indeed, unlike the one we’ve left, NAIA Terminal 1. (If you’re going through this particular terminal, make sure you don’t eat here. They’ve got bad food with strangely inflated prices that are four to five times more expensive than what it’s usually worth outside the airport.)

December 22 is also Mom’s birthday so after meeting up with Dad, we had a fancy dinner at one of those fancy restaurants in the airport. No cake (or rice), but it was one good dinner. After that, we took a taxi to Dad’s condo, unpacked, and settled in comfortably to that old familiar fragrant smell that we’ve known and come to love and went to bed.

***

That was yesterday.

Today was spent trying to get used to the local culture again. At least that’s what it felt like for me.

This morning, we spent most of it eating breakfast, relaxing, taking it easy, then panicking while we prepared to leave the house because we were worried that we’ll get left behind by the bus, which we were. So we took two cabs (all six of us can’t fit in one cab, of course) to where we’re going, which was a church in Tampines town. I normally don’t attend mass but the family was complete and it’s hard to go against the parents in this situation since we’re in a different place (and it was hot outside, but then it was too cold inside, too, but that’s better than being hot and alone outside, I guess).

After that, we had lunch. There’s a certain smell about Singapore that is very much like itself. It’s the smell of the local food, I think.

Then, we took a train to the airport so Mom and Dad could pick up a piece of luggage that we’ve left the night before, Dad’s guitar. We only realized this when we got to Dad’s condo, and all of us forgot that we have a guitar with us. After all that shebang, we went back to Tampines mall to look around and try to shop while Dad went back to the condo to leave the guitar there so we could shop a bit. I wasn’t able to buy anything except a nice cup of almond-flavored soya (thing) that I shared with Tricia and Patrick. The others bought things. Then Dad arrived and we went to another mall complex to buy some electronic things and a vacuum cleaner for our house back in the Philippines. This is a relief. It’s much easier to clean with this than a broom.

We went grocery shopping after, bought some take away food, then went home.

***

A lot of the places here are airconditioned. The malls. The church. Our room. In those places, I miss your hugs. I wasn’t too worried that I don’t get to talk to you a lot. I’m in a different country, not even in the same landmass. It’s bound to happen. I’m more worried about you having to sulk because I’m gone for a week. I understand, but sulking doesn’t help. We’ve gone through worse. Let’s try to enjoy Christmas despite being apart for the most of it.

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