Homeless

Along the sidewalk, he strolled aimless
As, for that night, he was homeless.

With a whistle on his lips and a twinkle in his eye,
He paused a while, to look at the star studded sky!

Even with his apartment at a stone’s throw,
The bespectacled guy had nowhere to go.

He reached a bus stop and took a seat.
Everything tonight seemed so neat.

Through the pair of glasses, he had just bought,
His eyes saw everything that they had sought.

First came a lady and with her little girl,
And he silently listened to their tales unfurl.

Along came a man walking his black dog,
Behind them was his wife, on a jog.

The dog came to him and sniffed his shoe,
Happily, he petted the dog too.

With a loud screeching break, a bike had stopped,
And off the bike, the rider’s girlfriend hopped.

While they chatted about a movie song,
A guy smoking a cig came along.

He constantly kept checking his phone,
While voices at the stop sounded like bees in a drone.

Towards the bus stop, three teenagers ran,
While slowly walking towards it, was an old man.

As big lights flashed in his eyes, he saw the bus,
Everyone got up at once, and so began the rush.

As the last person to climb, stood on a bus step,
And zooming with the speed of a convertible, it left.

While he sat still, on the bus stop seat,
He wondered who else, would he meet.

He gazed across the starry sky.
Tonight, he was a homeless guy.

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Wanderlust

IMG_6090Singapore was awesome!

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I love this picture of the Chinese Thian Hock Keng Temple. The picture shows both old and new elements.

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Calm, quiet and people-less, this temple was a very interesting place to visit.

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There are two deities in this temple, whom I refer to as, the Cigarette Gods. For reasons I do not know, people put out cigarettes as offerings to them. Anyone willing to shed some light over this?

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Walking down the street, I found this man, peacefully waiting for a parked car, obstructing his view, to move, so that he could resume painting.

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Colorful painted shutters cheered up the street, even on a grey overcast day.

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These guys clomped all around the town, to welcome the Chinese New Year- the year of the horse.

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From Chinatown, to Arab street, it felt like I had flown away to a different country.

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Found a Mediterranean cafe. It served only vegetarian food. It did not serve alcohol. Life was good.

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On our way back, we were lost for a little while and when we were found, we were met with this view.

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I hopped on the HiPPO and explored the city.

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Armed with my camera backpack, a small sling bag, water bottles and multiple maps and guide pamphlets, I was the image of a clichéd tourist! And boy was I loving it!

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Maybe you can touch a cloud from the top of the Singapore flyer…

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Orchid Gardens turned out to be a wonderful escape from the tall skylines.

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Take some time & smell the flowers.

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A visit to the Jurong Bird Park and the night was an adventure.

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Met dear ‘ol Hedwig, bleary eyed and magnificent as ever.

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The (disputable) southernmost point of continental Asia.

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Walking on Siloso beach…

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The butterfly park, was, some kind of a magical land to be at.

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A little street shopping therapy at Bugis Street. 🙂

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Strange food things..

Of being scared in Singapore

I could not believe my luck. After four overcast rainy days, here was sunshine and I decided to head over toSentosa.

Soon the pleasant morning sunshine had turned into a horrifying heat and I started looking for Air Conditioned attractions on the Island. One of them was- Images of Singapore. Now TripAdvisor promised, this museum to be, a wonderful cultural experience. I entered.

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At the beginning, there was a small show about the Four Winds Trading Company.

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Significant moments in the history of Singapore were depicted beautifully.

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The museum had designed some simple yet intricate scenes like these living quarters of Chinese immigrant workers.

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While I was looking at these Chinese letter-writers, a family of four was walking around nearby. The father was trying to make his older girl understand the diverse cultures of Singapore. The girl, obviously disinterested, kept prancing around and saying, “I am bored. Can we go now?”. Her father brought her next to me, to look at the letter writers, and while he looked at them with awe, she commented, “Whoa! They are sooo creepy Dad.”

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I sighed, and walked away from the kid who didn’t appreciate art.

The next room seemed to be more colorful. I heard a tour guide, explaining wedding customs from different cultures, in Singapore, to a group of tourists.

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I realized, that it was an Indian family and they had started describing Indian traditions to the tour guide, as they approached the Indian wedding scene. I smiled and took a detour to a smaller room. When I re entered the wedding scenes, I noticed some music playing, which I hadn’t earlier because of their loud laughter. It felt peaceful.

I suddenly looked at the watch and heard my stomach rumble in hunger. In search of a way out, I climbed up a flight of stairs. It was a nursery with fake Japanese babies. I climbed the stairs back down.

Now I had reached a place, which held scenes from celebrations of different festivals. Lights of different shapes, sizes and colors kept blinking at me. I kept walking, in search of a door. The Indian family was now nowhere to be seen and neither was the smaller family of four.

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To my right was this. I kept thinking, man the kid was right! This is downright creepy.

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And next came this. The music had changed. The flames of the coals glowered. I was all alone, with freaky figures pretending to be humans.

If there was a time to get scared to the bones, this was it.

I madly looked around, for some human voice, for some kind of help. I had to escape. I kept walking through the same hallways, in vain. I saw a red sign, that read ‘Fire Exit- For emergencies only’. There was a door below it. I ran up to the exit. I pulled the handle and stepped out into broad daylight.

The Sun, whom I had been essentially hiding from, greeted me warmly.

Of being brave in Singapore

So after four days of not doing anything in Singapore, my cousins, uncle and aunt all told me to not to rely on them and to go out and explore the city on my own! Best advice ever!

Every morning then, I would be dropped off at the metro station (MRT) and would be asked to meet them at the same spot for a pick up later. Now in India, I would never travel by the metro alone, because I have managed to get onto wrong trains numerous times! I declare myself as ‘geographically challenged’. Somehow, in Singapore, I rode the metro like a boss! For a person who has never set foot in a bus in Pune, I hopped in and out off buses in Singapore, as if, I had been doing it for years. Other tourists often asked me for help with the bus numbers and routes at the bus interchange. So the sense of accomplishment of getting around on my own was pretty high!

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I can remember, the lady at the Orchid Gardens and the girl at the souvenir shop of the Jurong bird park, calling me brave or adventurous! The Chinese girls whom I met at the beach thought I was courageous! They thought I was a backpacker (which I wasn’t). The Indonesian girl whom I met at Sentosa, suddenly asked me, “Are you not afraid?” Surprised,I asked her, “Afraid of what?” When she could not answer, due to her lack of English vocabulary, I prompted, “Do you mean afraid of travelling alone?” She nodded.

I then answered, that I found Singapore to be a very safe and a tourist friendly place and I never really felt like I was alone or could end up in a problem. The people were friendly, always helpful with directions. One night, I had boarded a bus at 10 p.m. and for a very long time, I was the only passenger in the bus. Now this is something, which I would probably never do in India. Also I wouldn’t advice anyone to board an empty bus at late night, in any country. I told the Indonesian girl, that I probably wouldn’t travel alone like this in India. The promptness with which I said the last statement, surprised me a little and saddened me.

I never actually felt brave while doing these things alone, even though it felt nice to be thought of being so by other people. Rather than feeling courageous, I felt free. Whatever the feeling was, it was positive and it was new. I became rather philosophical and while I explored Singapore, I found me.

Though, now I wish, I’d have rather found me a guy 😉

More and hopefully better stories and pictures coming soon 🙂 Stay tuned guys!

My Singapore Story

These days, most of my sentences begin with, “When I was in Singapore,….” 🙂 and so that is how I decided to begin my blog post. I went to SG for for a 10 day long vacation and began the new year in a different country! It was my first trip abroad as an adult and it was my first trip abroad alone. It was a long journey- from a folder, on my laptop, called ‘Visa Documents’, to another folder, called ‘Singapore Photos’!

So beware! For now I begin spamming you guys with stories and pictures of my trip! 😀
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Welcome to the City of the Merlion, the Island guarded by the mighty Lion, the fishing village of Temasek!
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I find mythical creatures rather fascinating. They make us keep an open mind for all kind of possibilities.
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When you climb all the way up (in an elevator) to the 37 meters tall Merlion’s head, you get to see this spectacular view.
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This tallest observatory in Singapore, the revolving Tiger Tower, located at Sentosa Island, along with this gigantic replica of the Merlion offers a full panoramic view of the Island!

I could go on endlessly about Merfolk or how friendly the Singaporeans are but I think I ll stop for now. What happened on wordpress while I was on vacation? How did you start your new year? Did I miss an awesome post that you wrote? Feel free to send me a link 🙂
Cheers!

2014

May this year bring to you new possibilities.
May you be with the people who love you.
May 2014 become the best year of your life!
Be creative!
Be adventurous!
Be free!
Wishing everyone a very happy new year!

A Magical Night

She sat by the window, on a cold winter’s night,
With books in her hand, and not a Geminid in sight.

She struggled with the iron bars and crammed her neck.
And yet no meteors fell for her sake.

She looked at the mismatched socks, she wore in a hurry,
The stars suddenly seemed to be so blurry.

She clutched the blanket closer to her,
And closed her eyes as sleep won over.

She stood in a forest, covered with snow,
And in the middle of it, she saw a fire glow.

She went closer and found a tall talking tree,
A river gushed through the woods, along with a wind so free!

The fire danced to the wind, under the moon.
On the river’s music, the tree sang a whimsical tune.

Forgetting herself, she clapped and cheered.
And no sooner, had the Gods of the Elements disappeared.

At midnight, she heard a bark and opened her eyes,
Out of the window, she saw a dog of a big size.

Then appeared a man, as if out of a sketch,
He threw a stick, for the dog to fetch.

She watched them together only to realize,
that, it was Santa and Rudolf, in a clever disguise.

Though not a Geminid in sight,
It was yet a magical night.

May this Winter bring Joy to you! Share some laughs, spread the cheer. Believe in Magic.
Merry Christmas!