There are so many reasons which makes Singapore feel more like home!
When you ask someone who just visited Singapore how their trip was, chances are they will first exclaim ‘It’s so clean!’. Well the only things lying on many streets and pavements are maybe some leaves and dust. There are bins everywhere so even before you can think of littering, chances are a bin will appear in front of you, and so will the word ‘fine’ – it’s a $ penalty and community service aka street cleaning if caught – no pain no gain!
It’s so green that you’d think the country is one huge park containing many mini parks, stuffed with tall buildings in between. The mini parks are in housing areas and there are the real parks too like the Botanical Gardens. The greens keep the pollution down so air quality is maintained even with the number of motorcars on the roads.
Great food, at great prices
Singaporeans are proud of their food and eating has to be the most popular past time. Some people actually go all out for good food and will drive a distance, struggle to find a parking lot and join the queue for 45 minutes for a plate of a very well prepared Hainanese Chicken Rice at $3. If you want to have, say Nasi Lemak, just ask anyone and they will give you a list of places that serve the best ones. People here are crazy over buffets too so it’s advisable to make a reservation for a buffet. And yes, locals love talking about food too and everyone sounds like a professional food critic, so that’s another conversation starter other than the weather.
We love the cultural diversity here. Other than the main Chinese, Malay, Indian and Eurasian racial groups, there are so many foreigners living and working here that it is normal to be having dinner with people from 5 different countries.
Safe to say, you can walk in peace on the streets of Singapore at midnight and not end up in pieces so having supper at 2am at a coffeeshop is not a problem – of course discretion is the order of the day at any time. You can see police on patrols in public areas pretty frequently. A low crime can also be attributed to the fact that Singapore is known to be one of the countries with the strictest laws.
Owning a car in Singapore is like daylight robbery for most people, so we are glad we can depend on the network of bus routes and subway lines (MRT: Mass Rapid Transit) which is ever expanding. Most areas are covered by a bus or train and arrival frequencies are high, so walking and waiting are kept to a minimum. We love the EZ Link card too for the trains and buses so we don’t have to fumble with coins. Service hours last till about midnight and are extended on special holidays.
Singapore English, that’s what Singlish stands for and it really is a part of the country and people. Singlish is essentially English with a wider range of sentence structures (aka having no structure) and a greater vocabulary (lol) because it includes words from Malay and Chinese dialects and phrases loosely translated from them. Since people of different races make up the country, Singlish naturally formed along the way as a means of communication and it is still evolving. If you have not heard of Singlish, you’re outdated, because the dictionary now officially contains a Singlish word – Kiasu! (thanks to Bryan for sharing this with us~!)
Every estate has amenities like clinics, markets, coffeeshops , hair salons and hardware stores within walking distance from homes, if not, within less than 15 minutes or travel time by bus. It is so convenient that some people actually just head downstairs of their block of flats in their PJs and hair combed with fingers, and gladly wave at neighbours and storekeepers as they walk around in the estate.