20 October 2008

singapore


i'm in singapore for a few days. I see tall brightly lit and excessively cooled buildings, neat, organised greenery, more rules than you can remember, clockwork and boredom... its safe and free of asian faults, a cab driver tells me... but vietnam and india with all the faults looks more human, more lively. the indian part of this city is the most impolite, crowded and messy... i see a serpentine queue outside the western union money transfer shop... india must be thrilled about all the dollars being sent home. on the streets i see indian workers stacked on little pick-up truck-carts, sipping on the clean wind on their face, gazing at a cross between madras and the west. its a good example of the greater good over individual freedom. if i were an indian girl, i probably wouldn't be saying all this. safety is something men value less, even take for granted. vietnam is exceptional because it has both chaos and safety. most of mankind's indulgences are free and everywhere in vietnam... there is more sex and alcohol and everything else on the streets than the men could want. frustration and desperation are killed when the fruits are not forbidden. its a good case for a liberal society.

in singapore, i have a friend - like-minded, speaking the same language, with similar reference points... familiarity feels strange after a break.

I miss my little town – pleiku. I miss the look in their eyes when I speak in Vietnamese. I’m truly learning something for the first time since high school. Something to wake up to.

6 comments:

Penguin said...

Che! I wish I could've been there over the weekend. It would've been good to see you.

Artemis Foul said...

aren't we guilty of oversimplifying the "natives" them with their baser instincts, innocent eyes and "purity" of heart ;)

Wanderer said...

penguin, come vietnam!

artemis, if you move from my little town to singapore its impossible to miss the difference. the economy is agrarian and people are simpler, genuine and more friendly. when they move to full on money-making like spore i guess we'll see more dogs eating other dogs. it may sound cliched and oversimplified, but maybe you could come and see sometime.

Sriram said...

go around and feel the world eh? nice..

wendrick said...

Your observations of how a cultural ideal towards mutual happiness compares with mutual enforced behavior, and your awareness that less can be more than enough, started a 5 hour conversation touching on Freedom versus Legislation, The Balance between Individual Needs versus Societal Norms, Open Vice versus Out of Sight/Out of Mind, Exploitation of Humans, The merits of traditional thought versus evolving modern thought, Opportunities and Acceptance of one's lot.

Thanks for that....It's a fascinating book....It has us drooling for more....

sakshi said...

seems ... you are ...growing.
good.