Singapore and Monkey Battle Royals

Greetings all! So sorry i have been a bit behind with the posts, as i have been away from any sort of computer. I'm writing from Hong Kong, but that will be for the next entry. So....Singapore was a blast. The flight from Malaysia to Singapore was an ease. Right as we were about to exit the airport doors upon arrival though, we were of course selected for a "random" bag scan, and wouldn't you know it...they won the lottery...and i lost. Apparently you are not permitted to have what they call "flip knives", in Singapore. My favorite "assisted opening" Kershaw knife that i have had for almost ten years, goes everywhere with me, tucked deep in my checked luggage, which has never been an issue in the past. They told us we needed to "come with us" for police questioning...yay. At this point i was ready for a massive fine and or who knows what other prize. We were escorted to a private room in the back of the airport, where two officers started paperwork, while opening and closing the knife countless times, studying it like that of a four year old observing a rollie pollie for the first time in complete juvenile bewilderment. It was a bit comical to be honest with you. After about 30 minutes, they finally told me the knife would have to be confiscated, but with only a warning issued...FWEEEEW! In other words, if i bring anything questionable into Singapore again...they will tackle me and throw me in the slammer with a massive fine...i'm trembling in my boots...ha. I suppose things could have gone much worst...welcome to Singapore. 

We stayed at a wonderful hostel called the River City Inn, which i recommend to anyone traveling in the future. As with everywhere thus far in the trip, we went food crazy, eating everything in site. Such wonderful cheap nom noms. The Singapore Zoo was on our agenda, of which was spoken quite highly, so we headed towards the "wild" animals in hopes of a fun filled day. I have to say...i was not too impressed, UNTIL we came across the "Fragile Forest". It was as if you took a whole forest, and just smushed it into a 16 acre caged free for all. There were parrots, butterflies, massive lizards, small ducks, lemurs, fruit bats, little one-foot dear like creatures...horrifying mind you...ha, fluffy pigeon like birds, blue massive feathered flightless birds that very well could have been bio engineered in a lab, along with many other wacky creatures. The most amusing aspect was not knowing what you were going to bump into. I loved it. Probably more than most...ha. It was my child like curiosity coming out i suppose. In short, the Fragile Forest made the whole trip worth while. I must add, that it feels extremely odd photographing animals in a zoo, to the point where i was almost ashamed to be doing so. I even stopped for a long while. It just feels awfully cheapening. I have so much respect for Nick Brandt and his beautifully poetic wildlife portraiture, so i suppose anyone who views his work might experience similar feelings. Anyways, i digress.

We did a bit more research on sites to see around Singapore, and somehow came across the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve canopy walk. Now...when i read "canopy walk"...i think "Sweet! A long hike up in the trees!" NOPE...i suppose we should have read up a bit more. What we set off to see, was about two miles of hot bleh hiking with massive spiders almost eating us on every turn, then one hundred yards of mediocre view treetop crossing, then another two miles of the same sweat filled Charlotte's forest web feeding frenzy. I suppose i might be exaggerating a it was indeed enjoyable, just not as expected. On a side note...i came the closest thus far, to socking a monkey in the head. I know that sounds so very wrong, and trust me, i would never do so unless absolutely necessary. BUT, there was one particular rascal that just would not let me pass. We came up to a bend and he was just sitting with a mango, enjoying himself. We were about two feet away when he stopped everything and just stared at us with crazed eyes, teeth glaring. At that moment, my fists went into ninja mode...i was ready for a real Wing Chun jungle battle royal. I told myself "you may actually have to strike a monkey today"...bahah! As we came closer, he hissed and raised his two hands..."it's go time" i told myself. Mind you, we were on a three foot wide trail so space was very limiting. Three inches away...i started to ready my strike. Two we goooooo...! I don't know if he was just putting on a show, or if i just moved by him a little too quick, but before i knew it, i had passed the beast and evaded a very PITA worthy moment...until next time furry warrior.

I had the pleasure of attending an Annie Leibovitz exhibit at one of the massive art venues. To anyone who is familiar with her portraiture and photojournalism work, i urge you to look into her landscape imagery. It really is beautiful, filled with soft energy and emotion.

Last on the list of things to do, was meet up with another old family friend. It was such a pleasure grabbing dinner with her and recapping on much of my lost memories, from back in the KL life. We spent four hours eating delicious hamburgers and talking like old friends. The late night restaurant lifestyle is so wonderful over here. To be able to walk around at eleven in the evening, with the ease of knowing you will find some sort of restaurant or ice cream joint still open is amazing. 

I've been very fascinated with all the massive buildings around the area, so forgive the increasing amount of images dedicated to such. Anyways, that is all for now. I'm sure there is much i left out, but i'm exhausted and this computer area has very limited air conditioning. On a very positive note...i'm feeling SO much better. I can't tell you how happy i am to have energy again. More to come soon, as Hong Kong has been a blast so far! Say hello to the beautiful coast if you happen to find yourself up Highway 1! I must say i miss it so. All the best, David


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