As incidentally instructed by Mr. Boss to spend last weekend of product launching in Singapore. Yes, another one-day-to-go preparation and ready for tight schedule of business trip. Mr. Boss asked me to stay for 3 days than just one day trip (as always) instead. Welcoming and briefing for whole agenda during Saturday, we were running for sampling and launching in 4 main top stores. Everything was well prepared and running smoothly. Unfortunately, I had to go by myself on Sunday without any colleagues who accompany me.
I picked to rent a neat room at Lavender Street. Staying alone without any plan, I should have said thanks to internet that helped me find the destination for the following days. Accidentally, my campus mate named Winda also in Singapore. Luckily, I found somebody who I can talk to. We arranged Sunday Trip around Bugis Junction and its neighborhood, our main purpose was looking for such a cute and cheap souvenirs. Bugis street with various type of sellers, snacks, candy, chocolate, fruits, dresses, shoes, wallet, miniature, handy craft, and many more. Across the street, there was Sunday Market with full of crowded which stood next by quiet Buddhist Temple.
Winda would come back to Jakarta with afternoon flight, still 2 hours to go. We entered an early opening coffee bar in Bugis Junction since Ice Cream shop that we've searched was still closed. While we're trying to take a picture together in not-very-typical of place, I mean just same coffee bar as exist in Jakarta. However, it must be noted that we need tripod for good picture. Winda showed me how MRT (Mass Rapid Transportation) works, gave me the direction, and suggested a must-visited attraction. Time flew, she caught her flight to Changi Airport and I went to different platform in order to complete my working report.
Almost sunset on Sunday, I completely became solo traveler. Main destination was Merlion Park, Rafless Street, and Marina Bay. Those are landmark of Singapore that is always surrounded by many tourists. Too many people and I preferred to walk around calm spot to look forward laser show from Marina Bay. Moreover, I was in serious thinking to buy tripod at least for nice selfie. I chose an empty bench of woody terrace in Fullerton Hotel. A tall guy with blonde hair who carried hand bag for his camera took a seat beside me. He was busy with his lens and stuff until I could hear 'beep' from his phone, then he was on the phone for video call using Skype. I noticed a Dutch accent, very familiar with some words such as 'ik' and 'ne'. He let his family know about some popular places in Singapore that he has visited. Suddenly he stared at me and asked about the time of laser show. Sure I also had no idea and another tourist from Germany who sat on near to us answered that it usually performs at 8 o'clock. He hung up the cell phone, so I encouraged myself to start a conversation.
(Me = T; The Guy = G)
T: “Are you from Netherlands?”
G: “Yeah, how could you..”
T: “I know your accent. Sorry, don’t get me wrong! I don’t understand you language at all. But I know some words.”
G: “Oh, wow…I’m speaking Dutch. And you?”
T: “I’m from Jakarta. Are you coming from Kuala Lumpur?”
G: “Exactly, I came here 2 days ago and look around”
T: “Do you plan to visit Indonesia also?”
G: “Not this time, maybe next year”
T: “Do you visit Bangkok?”
G: “Already, last year. But Bangkok, is really terrible. I mean the traffic jam. Almost same with KL. Well, I like Singapore, very clean and more internationally look”
T: “It is. Hey, which city do you live in Netherlands?”
G: “I’m not sure that you know it..”
T: “What is the name?”
G: “Arnhem, it’s located in border area of Netherlands and Germany”
T: “Is it in east part? Near Wageningen?”
G: “Ya, only one hour from Wageningen. Have you been there?”
T: “I’ve been in Eindhoven 2 years ago.”
G: “That is in south part. You know Utrech? There is direct train from Endhoven to my home town via Utrech.”
T: “Interesting. I was traveled in Belgium at that moment, next time I will explore your country more.”
And the laser show appeared, very enchanting with back song of classic music. I felt like watch a concert, but hey, where is the orchestra?
G: “It’s nice to meet you. Hope to see you again.”
T: “Me too, see you in your country hopefully.”
G: "Yeah, will be good idea"
We walked separately. Well, journey is always be private part of everyone's life. I went along the shore, heading Marina Bay. Full moon was shining brightly. It led me to next place : Marina By The Bay, a huge garden with colorful lamp and artistic design. What happened then was out of my prediction. I didn't collect information fully to reach that place. Nobody I could ask since I passed empty path and arrived at big building in front of Marina Bay Hotel. Seems like everybody looked at stranger one when I realized that I was at casino lobby. How silly!
I decided to go back and found bus to Lavender Street easily. The night was still young, but my body screamed to stop me from walking further. Sunday has gone in the same time awaited for flight to Jakarta on Monday afternoon. Report of my business trip has been delayed. I worked it out after finish my breakfast and spent very nice Monday morning by sightseeing in Jalan Besar. If you want to visit uncommon tourism place in Singapore and find the harmony of local life, this will be suitable one. Something that I like most in Lavender Street is Food Corner which is served Halal Menu. You can visit legendary Jalan Besar Stadium which is used for National Football Team of Singapore. Actually Jalan Besar itself is industrial area near Kallang River. It is also quite close to local heritage of Arabian Street and Little India.
Have a great journey!