Singapore

Written by Anya Marie

Had a nice layover in Singapore on our way from Nepal to Vietnam, so here are the daily updates from our short time there.

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Benya Honeymoon Day 37 (10/18/19): Ben let me snooze in some this morning, especially after a couple hour time change, but despite that, WE DID A LOT! We started our day checking out 2 different hawker stands where the chefs received a Michelin star; Hawker Chan and Tian Tian. Hawker Chan was a bit underwhelming, so we were unsure how Tian Tian would be, well let me tell you, that was the juiciest chicken I’ve ever had! Their speciality is chicken and rice and it set us back a whopping $3.50 SGD (~$2.57 USD). The Hawker Food Stalls are really awesome; they have food from anywhere in the world, it’s absolutely delicious and cheap too! Next, we went to the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple located in Chinatown. Such a gorgeous temple and we were fortunate to be there when they were having a service. Neither of us know much about Buddhism, so it was nice to learn more and see how lovely it is. Afterwards, we walked over to the Gardens by the Bay, which was SO COOL. We were hesitant to spend money on the cloud forest and flower conservatory, but we did it and were not let down! To finish off the day, we laid under the giant “trees” and watched the light show; this place is so magical. Overall, first impressions of Singapore: extremely clean, efficient, so much to do, friendly people, very international, and an amazing food scene! Although we loved Nepal, it has been nice to experience a different part of Asia.

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Benya Honeymoon Day 39 (10/20/19): As we lined up in what we thought was the queue to enter a temple to witness the fire walking festival, Ben jumped back embarrassed as he was handed a styrofoam tray. Looking around in confusion, we both stumbled saying “I’m sorry, we are in the incorrect place”, the woman who handed us the trays ushered us back “No, please, please join us. You’re welcome here”. Ben and I looked at each other with that ‘okay let’s do this’ expression, placed our trays out in front of us like school kids in a cafeteria and received a delicious Indian meal. We sat on the floor in a line with about 40 Indian people and ate the food out of our right hand. I had never felt like such a minority, yet so welcomed before. Today was a special day for Hindus as they celebrated the fire walking festival where thousands of male Hindus walked through the streets of Singapore from one temple to another 5 km away to then walk across hot coals to honor their faith. It was such a special moment and a huge reason why I love traveling, especially to places so different than where I grew up. This day was also a Sunday, and we had attended church in the morning where a pastor who had stood up churches across the Middle East discussed the incredibly saddening challenges our Christian brothers and sisters have to face on a daily occasion as religious freedom is not their reality; both our practice of faith in the morning and the invitation to join the Hindus made me so thankful for the ability to practice my own religion without any persecution from my government or community and I truly hope this becomes a reality for everyone else in the world one day, soon.

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