Saturday, September 28, 2013

Seven Singular Things About Singapore

Yes, I ought to stop the alliteration before it gets out of hand. Regardless, here is a list of some of my observations of Singapore life that are fairly distinctive, at least to an expat.

Clementi Mall
1) Shopping malls.

Many people say that shopping is the national pastime of Singapore, but it tends to be true more often than not. Almost every single MRT station (the train that everyone takes) is connected with a mall, often multiple malls.

The malls themselves are a bit different than their American counterparts, as they are vertically stacked. There aren't as many outdoor venues where you can walk around freely.

Some of the glitziest malls include Vivo City (Singapore's largest), Ngee Ann City, and Suntec City. I will most likely do a full post on some of the fancier malls around town.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Monkeying Around at Sisters' Island

This past Saturday, I joined Amy and others on a macaque mission. Her Fulbright project studies the population patterns of these monkeys through DNA analysis and GPS tracking, and on this day we were going for DNA via some saliva samples.

Monday, September 23, 2013

2013 F1 Singapore Grand Prix

This past Sunday, I was lucky enough to attend the Singapore Grand Prix, a Formula 1 race. I was able to get a ticket through a good friend of my Dad's (hence the team Ferrari shirt). It just happened to be in the pit grandstand next to the finish line, so my view was incredible.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Singapore Skyline at Night

This is my view out of my apartment window tonight. Combine this with the sounds of the Singapore F1 Grand Prix roaring throughout the city, and I'm starstruck (moonstruck?). 

Camp Kesem in Notre Dame "Fighting" Commercial

For the past three years, I have been involved with Camp Kesem, a student-run organization that organizes an annual camp for the kids of cancer patients. It was a huge part of my college days.

This weekend, during the Notre Dame - Michigan State football game, the "What would you fight for" commercial will feature both Camp Kesem and Notre Dame's research involving cancer. This is just a tiny glimpse of camp, but hopefully it begins to give an indication about the impact the week can have on both the kids and counselors.


Thursday, September 19, 2013

Mid-Autumn Festival

 Happy Mid-Autumn Festival! 

Also called the Mooncake Festival, it is a traditional Chinese and Vietnamese holiday. It falls on the 15th of the eighth month in the Chinese Calendar, which always has a full moon (the lunar calendar makes this sort of planning a lot easier). The day also heavily features the delicious mooncake.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Haw Par Villa

A few weeks, I went with the other two Fulbrighters to Haw Par Villa. It is one of the stops on the MRT that I pass every day on the way to do research at NUS, but I did not know what was actually there. It is home to a Confucius theme park, with hundreds of statues and scenes from traditional Chinese folklore. With the wise old sage on the right beckoning us forward, we entered into this Chinese world of wonders.

Friday, September 13, 2013

2013 National Lion Dance Championships

Hey all,

I was strolling over to the gym at Orchard on Monday night when I heard a loud clamor of drums and cymbals. Really shrill cymbals. Investigating, I discovered that the official Ngee Ann City Lion Dancing Championships were being held all week. Having only heard of dragon dancing, I resolved to return and get a full experience. 

Monday, September 9, 2013

ND-Michigan Game Watch at London Bar

On Sunday morning, both the ND and Michigan Singapore Alumni Clubs joined forces to host a game watch at the London Bar, down near Clarke Quay. Right on the Singapore River, the place was very full by the 8AM kickoff. 

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Pulau Ubin (10K with KiKiKuKiKi)

On Saturday, I ventured out to Pulau Ubin for a 10K. Invited by 2012 Fulbrighter Chris (who actually was injured and ended up not coming), I showed up knowing nobody. Definitely did not leave that way.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Cathedral of the Good Shepherd

For the past three Sundays, I have been attending the 10AM Mass at the Cathedral of the Good Shephard, over by Bras Basah. I was actually baptized here back in 1990, but no one has recognized me yet.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

The Piano Guys come to Singapore

On Tuesday, I met up with some new friends at the Star Theatre for a concert. But not just any concert. The Piano Guys, made famous by their many YouTube covers and mashups, began their latest tour here in Singapore, and I was lucky enough to snag a ticket.

My seats weren't actually this good, my camera just makes it look a lot better. 

Monday, September 2, 2013

How to mail letters to Singapore

Hey all,  

Today, I'll be tackling a topic that is trickier than it seems - international mailing. Sure, it still involves an envelope and stamp, but Singapore has some interesting quirks that you should keep in mind if every trying to mail me.