After landing in Singapore, I was immediately hit by the sweltering heat and the smell of good food. Walking through the airport was an experience in itself. In Singapore people don’t have to go to the airport, we get to go to Changi. Ranked the #1 airport in the world, it doesn’t disappoint. I was mesmerized by the technology that allowed me to get through immigration in a matter of minutes. After being in Singapore for a few weeks, I realized that the airport reflected the country as a whole: clean, efficient, and welcoming.
I’m living in University Town Residence (UTR), the biggest accommodation in UTown, with my roommate Andrea who is also from BC. We got lucky with our dorm selection since we have aircon, a kitchen, and a common room all to ourselves. We are also conveniently located in a hub for student life. I’m taking a class on the future of renewable energy, an introduction to Business Analytics, a class on urban farming in cities like Singapore, and a class on Bollywood films! I enjoy learning these subjects from a Singaporean perspective. I also don’t have any classes on Fridays so I’ve been traveling during my 3-day weekends.
My biggest highlight from study abroad so far includes traveling. Singapore is located in a central part of South East Asia making it a hub to travel to surrounding countries.
A week into my abroad semester, I went to Johor Bahru (JB), Malaysia which is right across the border from Singapore. JB was great! The highlight from that trip was the night market where I tried a cricket and earthworm. To be honest, they weren’t bad, they both just tasted like a BBQ-flavored chip.
Pictured: Me at a night market. I got a henna tattoo of a dinosaur and it happened to be the same as the logo of a food stall.
I also went to Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam the week after. Me and my friends did a tour of the Mekong River Delta. I held a python and a beehive as well as tried traditional honey tea. We got to the delta via a ferry and several small boats–I loved being in the water!
Pictured: Me and my friends trekking through the forested parts of Unicorn Island in Southern Vietnam.
Randomly on my TikTok feed, this video popped up where a young street poet writes about the stories that passersbyers tell him. Naturally, me and my friend decided that we had to meet him. We waited in a queue for 30 minutes talking to a Singaporean local about the story we would tell the poet. We finally met the poet and told him about meeting a backpacker in Vietnam. He loved it, and we befriended the poet. He told us that he actually wants to go to college in Boston! Singaporeans are super welcoming and are happy to meet international students.
Pictured: Me and my friend before we met our poet friend.
I’m going to go to Australia soon for Recess Week. In the future weekends of this semester, I’m going to go to the Philippines, India, and Laos. I’m really excited for the rest of the semester.