Christmas at Singapore 12.26

The day after Christmas is an example of those days in your travels when you plan something out and discover a pleasant surprise in the middle. Tricia and I planned to just go to the National Library of Singapore, the most awesome library I’ve ever had the pleasure of walking into, read (naturally), and do some work, Tricia on her thesis and me on my short story, which promises not to be short at all.

But after reaching Bugis via train, we discovered the flea market that our friends have been telling us about, Bugis Village. We didn’t notice this before as we went to the Library from another direction, which was City Hall. Pleased at our discovery, we decided to go back here after our library time.

And so our library time passed, and trust me when I say this, I wished that it could’ve been longer. The amount and variety of wonderful books is overwhelming. I know I could just study there and educate myself. I could do as Ray Bradbury did when he first wrote Fahrenheit 451. He stayed in the library and wrote his story on a typewriter, every now and then going off to find a book, read, and then go back to his typewriter, and write.

But I didn’t do much of that. All I did was remove a chunk of text that didn’t work, write a few bits, take down notes, look at the art books Tricia got for inspiration and next thing we know, it was 2:30. We had a large bag of food with us, courtesy of Mom. It was enough for 3 people and it was heavy. We didn’t want to spend on food that day.

After that, we went to Bugis village and just shopped. The products were cheap and there were good street food (which we didn’t buy until the next day, when we went back the next day). We went home relatively early and we didn’t know if we’re richer or poorer. We have less money but more stuff. So I guess both, or maybe nothing changed, after all, we just exchanged bits of paper and metal with stuff we like.

We came home and then Dad picked all of the family up to have dinner with a few of his officemates and friends in Singapore at a seafood place by the east coast of Singapore. We ate so much and many of them we haven’t tasted before, like a type of bamboo shellfish, a strange type of fish, lobster fruit salad, spider crabs (?) cooked three different ways, some veggies, and a sea cucumber stew which tasted okay but knowing that it was sea cucumber made me uncomfortable. After the dinner, which was a cheerful one on a large round table with a lazy susan, we went to look at the sea and hear the waves break and take a few pictures. Then we went home.

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