Thursday, April 27, 2006

Leaving Singapore - Hello UK

I have mixed feelings about leaving Singapore where I have been for the past two months. There are many things I would miss about Singapore but at the same time I have to admit that in a way I am glad to get back to London. It is spring in UK now and I just love this time of the year. The daffodils are out, trees are turning green and garden birds are beginning to nest. However, although I am looking forward to be back in the land of cool temperature and lovely daffodils, the thought of the condition of my neglected garden is quite daunting. I can just picture it, the lawn will be 6 inches high, weeds will be everywhere and the trees will need trimming. We do not even have a big garden but as always it will take me about 2 days to get the garden into a reasonably presentable state for a BBQ with friends.

I said that I have mixed feelings leaving Singapore. I was hoping that I would be able to stay in Singapore until May 6. This is the date set for the Singapore General Election. I have been informed that it is a great privilege to be able to witness an election held in Singapore. Singapore is the only country I know of where the odds are so stacked up against the oppositions that the ruling party wins the election before the first vote is cast. Anyway this is not my problem. If the Singaporeans can live with that, who are we to object and criticize.

There are of course numerous delightful things I like about been in Singapore. Food is great and relatively inexpensive compared to dining in the UK. The weather is warm, although the humidity can be a touch uncomfortable. The Singaporeans can be a little unfriendly but that is to be expected. Living in such a tiny country with zero natural recourse and with 4.2 million people all fighting for limited opportunity, one can see that over the last 40 year the Singaporean have become a very ungracious, uncompromising and very hard nose society. I shall go into too much details here, just suffice to say that visitors to Singapore must remain cool and not get too hot under the collar regarding the behavior of Singaporeans.

Now back in UK. Spring is great here. Unfortunately too late to see the daffodils, but the tulips are starting to bloom. Cherry blossoms are everywhere and I am glad to be here to see the arrival of the best season of the year – spring! A pair of robins is nesting in a box I made for them, and sitting in the conservatory watching them flying in and out of the box is just wonderful. In a week or so they will be busy rearing their young ones. I have also 3 nesting boxes for the blue tits, but they will not be nesting for another few weeks.

Our 3 plum trees in the garden are blossoming and there is promise of a good harvest in August. The apple tree and the pear tree are also doing well this year. The weather in UK is nice. Day temperature is around 18 degree C with the night temperature between 8 – 13 degree C. Looking forward to the summer and BBQ season.