It’s been a few days since my first post for a number of reasons. Firstly, I really haven’t done a lot that’s particularly interesting since I got here, mainly because 90% of my time was taken up by training. Secondly, as most of you who will actually read this will already know, I’ve been having a pretty shit time of it so far. Mainly down to jet lag, being a really long way from home all by myself and the overwhelming realisation that what I’ve done is massive in every sense of the word I think I cried almost continuously for my first 3 days and seriously thought about getting on the next plane home more than once. I won’t go into the boring details because I don’t really want to dredge it up again, and most of you have heard it all already, but safe to say that, although I’m still terrified about the commitment I’ve made in being here I am generally feeling more positive.
But I digress, the real point of this post is the worldwide tradition of New Years Eve. Before last night I didn’t even think about how weird it would seem that my New Years was 8 hours before everyone else’s, but when you’re receiving NYE snapchats and seeing your newsfeed clogged with happy 2015 messages at 8am it’s really surreal. I’m sure it was also really odd for my mum when I spoke to her from the early hours of the first day of 2015 and it was still only late afternoon for her. Anyway, I had a very sedate New Years by general standards. No alcohol was consumed at all, I still haven’t come to terms with how horribly expensive it is here, and it’s hard to find anything other than beer. I also had a minor New Years fail. I set out with the intention of seeing the fireworks over Marina Bay and basically missed them because of the looming structure that is the Marina Bay Sands resort. It’s impressive, and I definitely need to visit its roof garden/ bar but it is a bit of a party pooper. I also turned up at the bay horribly early (5 hours before the fireworks, to be exact) meaning that I was more than ready to leave long before the fireworks started.
All of this aside I did, however, have a successful and generally quite surprising evening. Because we were bored and couldn’t handle any more of the terrible 90s music coming from the official New Years Party we went exploring and stumbled upon both the Merlion and the Marina Bay Gardens. I intend to visit both of these again when I’ve actually read up on them, and when there are less people about, so I won’t go into mind-numbing levels of detail now, but they were both pretty cool. The Merlion is sat in front of One Fullerton, an imposing glass building at the heart of the super rich “new downtown” district, and just walking to it is a sightseers dream. The Merlion itself is a bit tacky, but in the best possible way.
Visiting the Gardens at Marina Bay was a complete accident, undertaken only because we still had 3 hours left until New Years, but it was also pretty amazing. I think it’s a fairly new attraction, but it’s basically like Kew Gardens but free, and all outside, and open 21 hours a day. Walking around it at night meant you couldn’t actually see any of the garden but there were loads of statues lit from below which gave it an eerie feel. The Gardens also boast the Super Trees which are one of the most impressive things I have ever seen. From what I could tell they’re made out of metal and covered entirely by different varieties of plants and trees. Lit-up in blue and purple they looked like a set-piece from Avatar. There’s also a sky walkway between a group of them, but it closed before we arrived. Despite this I definitely recommend the Gardens as a place to visit, in the day time or at night, just hit me up before you go so I can tag along!
Enough for today, I’ll be back when more exciting stuff has happened to me!
Leah Out X