Singapore Surprise

Having only arrived in Singapore on Wednesday, I still feel exhausted during the day and wake up at night.  Having rain mostly throughout the year, luckily this is the one month when there is hardly any.  Just heat.  My body having adjusted to the cold winters in Austria and England though are now finding it not so easy in this Singaporean Summer.  Nevertheless, new situations await my response so no time for hanging around.  Already I´ve come into contact with a diverse celebration of cultures from Indian to Chinese, Taiwanese, Korean and Singaporean.   

 After a short wander through China town and picking out hand-painted chopsticks for my collection back home 
 We happened upon a Hindu temple nestled at the end of the street....
..... Music guided us inside and we took off our shoes into the temple to meet
..... colourful clad women in saris, that had been praying and were now wondering around and greeting each other with smiles and embraces
  ...Hindu deities were sat opulent and flashy ready for their Kodak moment
Surprised as I was, to see such richness of Hindu culture amidst all Singaporean urbanisation and China Town market stalls...
 ...I could do little more than watch as the candles burn brightly and let the ceremony take me back to an early intercultural experience at primary school where we celebrated all the festivals including Diwali and Chinese New Year

 The Lion Buddha that I haven´t come across before, is a common sight in Singapore as a symbol of protection.

 Surrounding these sacred sights were kitchse shops selling shirts with stick on ties and fake gold watches
 Inside, I found that for every Chinese animal sign there was a personal deity that was allocated to each that you could pray to for protection.
 Hundreds of miniature Buddha`s aligned the blood red walls, perched in their own little golden arch.
 Outside the blazing midday heat, inside tranquility and calm even amoungst the tourist bustle
 Apparently it had all started with finding the real tooth of Buddha on this site, so that it instantly became a sacred place to build a temple for worship.
A few blocks away there lay a colonial house from 1903, remaining whilst all around modern highways with expensive cars whizzed past.  100,000 dollars is the cheapest and you have to get permission from the government to drive one.
Looking for a brief respite from the Summer heat, we stopped at Yixing xuan teahouse on 30 / 32 Tanjong Pagar Rd and met my brother who`s been out photographing for the morning.  He removed auto flash from our digital camera allowing shots to have a more subtle touch

 Settling into a cup of Oolong and seafood tofu and I could feel the delicate aspects of my senses awaking after being dulled from over exposure of quick western consumerist and late capitalist life.  Tea time is really a delight and one I have missed.  Stocking up on Taiwanese Oolong tea, I vowed to continue this ritual when I return to Western shores
 A little further down colonial Pangar Road, Red Dot Museum awaits...
 ..Sweet Valentines already allocated to post, a design museum sharing its practical yet savvy show
 ...a piano lamp that can be played, no sound, just light, but changing each time you hit the keys
 Lamps that suspend like electric jelly fish in the deep ocean, ever evanescent in your sight...
 ...mirrored like pools of moonlight
 ...A bed of lights, funky neon and bright, changing as you catch their sight
 Like your moment in as it may come, it might, the lights like stars so strong and white
 The design show all around, German and Austrian books abound
 Typographic, block and found
 Realising that Germanic design is super sound
 What`s this? In Vienna I saw, its now here, Singapore show their crowd....
 ...a factory for an art space to see 
... not a talking, but writing clock that`s for me!
 The ride back to apartment was long, but not without a mixed culture song
 Time to cool and swim before dinner gong
Now time to relax with Goji berries and children`s song