austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,
austin_dern
austin_dern

Every step you take

So at the Harbourfront MRT station I stopped at the mini convenience store and bought a block of marzipan. Opened it up, started to eat; after a moment, someone made an announcement reminding all that eating and drinking was not allowed within the station. Um ... was that directed at me? Something inspired it, since it wasn't the prerecorded announcement, which is made by a pleasant-sounding woman who tries to do the BBC Accent while sounding Singaporean. This was just a guy doing better than mumbling. Their signs say they have ``approximately'' forty closed-circuit televisions for your protection, but, sheesh, give some space. And I was in the tunnels leading to the station, anyway.

At the adjacent Harbourfront Mall (which has its own Customs officials) a jewelry store set up one of those booths contestants grab prizes represented by slips of paper fans blow around. Mildly amusing, sure, but my attempts to watch were nullified by a store clerk who insisted on telling, at excessive length and in inordinate detail, all the deals they had. I am more likely to buy chili durian mouthwash than jewelry, but I couldn't get that across.

Over at Plaza Singapura I saw the competitors who strive to survive 72 hours in a room chilled to 64 degrees Fahrenheit. Mind, the real challenge is staying awake and not moving out of the 0.8-square-meter block. Contestants have complimentary spring water. They'd dwindled to about a dozen by the time I was there.

Trivia: The most expensive Singapore MRT fare is S$3.80, for an adult riding between the Bukit Panjang and the Sengkang LRT lines and paying single-trip ticket fares. With an EZ-link card the maximum is S$2.92. Source: TransitLink Guide 2004, Transit Link Pte Ltd.

Currently Reading: Louis Pasteur, Patrice Debré.

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