21 04 2010

Singapore is confusing. On the one hand, it’s jammed full of glittering high-rise real estate, the likes of which I have never seen. Coffee’s expensive. And my gym… if I’d signed up to it for weight loss, it might have been cheaper to amputate a limb.

On the other hand, there are things that I always thought were marks of a “economically challenged” country. People try to sell you stuff on the street. A lot of prices are negotiable. There are mysterious old men with bamboo brooms and a mission to clean the streets of the world. A lot of heavy lifting seems to be done by people rather than machines. Bike couriers aren’t lycra’d cycleobsessives with an expensive roadie, they’re ancient guys with doubtful contraptions and a crate on the back.

And now I wonder… I’m sure that the NZ of my childhood had a lot more “economically challenged” signs than it does today. When foreign imports were horrendously expensive. When it was highly unusual to fly anywhere. When I just ate plain peanut butter sandwiches and an apple for lunch (although that could just be who my parents were). I’m not sure – it’s not like I was paying much attention at the time. What happened? And what are the reliable signs that a country’s people are doing well for themselves?

Luckily, as a science graduate I can leave those sorts of questions to someone with a BA.

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One response

9 05 2010
Susan

Hey Kate,

Great to see you on here. Love the illustrations/blog. Take care, hope you’re having a great time in Singapore.

xx Susan

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