Wednesday, March 18, 2015

That was a LONG Flight

I have arrived in Singapore! I have no idea what time it is back home, but here it's 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday. We left London at 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday night. Somehow an entire day vanished in the space of 12 hours. I know clocks involve arbitrary counting on the part of humanity and that I haven't actually lost any time off my life, but it's still strange and unsettling!

The flight was uneventful but, yes, very long. I read three New Yorkers, worked on "The Moonstone" -- a massive Victorian novel by Wilkie Collins that I brought mainly because it's huge and I figured it would help me kill time -- and watched "Birdman." I was not overwhelmed by "Birdman." Granted, I had crappy airline headphones and could only hear about every fourth word, but still -- it seemed awfully self-indulgent. Maybe I need to see it again, but I am still firmly in the "Boyhood" camp for best picture. For what it's worth at this point.

I also checked on the flight map from time to time, tracing our progress over Bucharest, Baku, the Caspian Sea, peninsular India, the Andaman Islands and Kulala Lumpur (which I tried in vain to see from the airplane windows, it being daylight by then).

This brief message was printed on our immigration landing cards, and the cabin crew announced it several times over the PA prior to landing. They do not mess around in Singapore. Not a problem for me, obviously, but it made me wonder what one is supposed to do if one is, in fact, smuggling and is already on the plane about to land. It's not like they can turn around!

We had an extremely groovy bus from the airport to our hotel. Doesn't it look kind of like a '70s conversion van, one of those things with shag-carpeted ceilings?

Singapore seems beautiful so far. We drove a superhighway lined with bougainvillea and mimosa trees, and saw plenty of otherworldly modern architecture downtown. There is not a speck of litter, and in fact littering apparently carries heavy penalties. (Not as heavy as drug smuggling!) Almost immediately after checking in, night fell and so I do not yet have any photos. That will have to wait until tomorrow!


  1. That does resemble the carpeted vans of the 70's! Looking forward to your photos.

  2. This whole thing made me smile. Remind me not to take drugs with me when I go to Singapore, okay?

  3. Like I said, Singapore has RULES. Rick came back with a tee-shirt with all of them printed on it. Fines for everything you can think of!

  4. I love going on your trips with you! Can't wait for the photos you take tomorrow.

  5. So happy to see a post from you today. I wasn't sure I'd see one with your very long travel plans. Love that bus! I can't wait to see more photos. From the photos I've seen on line before, it looks like a wonderful place to explore.

  6. Ms Moon sent me over to your blog. It seems I have come at an exciting time.

  7. we should have stiff penalties for littering too. humans are such slobs.

  8. Have a great time, Steve.
    Just promise us you won't buy any chewing gum from any shady characters with raincoats..

  9. GEEZ, don't get arrested THERE Chewing gum is also illegal...Birdman would be crappy on a tiny screen, in a flying tin can...give it another chance but in a theater!I agree, however, about Boyhood. THAT was a great movie!!
    Have a great time!
    Don't do anything wrong... EVERYTHING is wrong, in Singapore, so it seems! Take care!

  10. P.S.
    Great pic of the flight map. That is my go-to on any flight. It helps to know where you are and how long you have to reach your destination. ;)

    I count every single minute!

  11. I love going on these trips with you, too! I'm cracking up at the death penalty for drugs -- good lord. And I agree with you wholeheartedly on "Birdman" -- so entirely self-indulgent! Did you happen to read the fascinating article about the IRA fighters in the New Yorker?

    Have a wonderful time and stay safe from flogging or capital punishment!

  12. I'm sure you will like Singapore, Steve.

    I am feeding the fish while you are away.

    The death penalty for drugs is a serious business in some Asian countries; at the moment, in Indonesia, two Australians are on 'death row' - it's really an island, awaiting execution after eight years in jail.

    Most people know about these penalties, but those in the 'trade' are sometimes young, foolish and think they will never be caught.

    Ms Soup

  13. I'm stealing that drug traffickers image.