Thursday, September 24, 2015

Day 67 - Rock Bottom

Another working day. Since nothing particular happened at work, I take the opportunity to mention a few things about Singapore that I find interesting.

  • Sockets: It might be quite convenient if you are used to it - but I am not used to it and constantly complain. In Singapore, like in Australia, New Zealand and UK, all power outlets have an on/off switch at the socket. Sometimes I am wondering why the hairdryer isn't working or why the laptop is on low battery although being plugged in - yes, I have of course plugged everything in, but didn't switch the socket on. Over time, the problem disappears - but not because I learn to use the switch, but because all the sockets are switched on...
  • Loo brushes: I am very sorry for mentioning, but this certainly seems to be a problem all over Asia. How should you keep your toilets (at home or in public space) clean, if the concept of a loo brush seems to be unknown? We didn't see any brushes even in Japan.
  • Bus stations: Now I understand poor Spongebob standing all alone in the dark for days at a bus stop in "Rock Bottom" (if you don't know that episode: Rock Bottom is the creepy counterpart of funny "Bikini Bottom"). He waits for the bus back home, but nothing happens for hours and, once he is distracted for a short time, three buses come in a row and are instantly gone. Our experience at Singapore bus stations is quite similar: Regarding whether we want to go east/west, north, or to our office at NUS, we either need bus #33, #183 or NUS-BTC. Whatever the bus is we are waiting for, **ALWAYS** first at least five wrong ones arrive first - always! When we need a #33, several #183 pass, and it's the other way round when we need a #183. Once, even five #183, three #188 and four "OFF SERVICE" buses passed before the #33 arrived - of course nearly instantly followed by another #33. Spongebob, my good old childhood fellow.
    (Disclaimer: The Singapore Mass Rapid Transit System works efficient, is clean and convenient. It's us that arrive at the wrong bus stops at totally inappropriate times. Maybe we should download one of the apps that tell you exactly which bus will arrive at which time at which stop. But without 3G or 4G, you just try and wonder...). 

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