We joined a Couch Surfing group that was going around to some of the New Year's festivities. It was such a friendly group of people! There must have been about 75 of us, and we made quite a site walking along the street, especially when we got to traffic lights. Lots of people living in Singapore, expats and travellers. We met our first Canadian this trip, people from Sri Lanka, Equador, Ireland, France, Us, Philippines, Serbia. CS is amazing as you instantly seem to have
friends. So as we could have wandered the same places alone, here there's someone to talk to which ever way you turn. It's interesting to hear about so many different peoples journeys and how they got here.
We walked down to where there was a large display on a floating platform. Lit up figures from
the Chinese Zodiac and all the 'lucky' signs that are needed for a prosperous new year: throwing coins, walking through pineapples, etc. There was even a shadow puppet display.
Then we walked along the water and watched the Marina Bay Sands put on a musical lazer light show. As if that place needs to make themselves look any better! (would have loved to go up, put they charge a ridiculous price and you're still not allowed in the pool).
Then we went over to the night stalls for something to eat. Of course, ½ of them were closed for the New Year, so we couldn't eat Chinese on Chinese New Year :)
Onto the main event – the fireworks. Since you're not allowed to personally purchase fireworks in Singapore, there was only 1 display. A gorgeous city view with all of the buildings in the background. I was well prepared with my tripod and everything. But the wind was against us and all we got to see was lit up explosive clouds.
Happy New Year!
So today is the day! For a Saturday, the city is deserted – everyone's on holiday! We thought the big cities would be even busier. This is the opposite of what we were expecting for Chinese New Year. However, that was before we had a clear understanding of the kind of place Singapore is. Unlike the rest of Asia, there are lots of rules and restrictions. Certainly no fireworks going off in the streets as we'd been hearing for the last month. No messy markets or other craziness. The only place we found that was busy was the backstreets of Chinatown. This place was packed with people buying last minute goodies for their celebrations and old men getting out of the house and playing chinese chess with their buddies.