I’ve been booking flights to Singapore for three consecutive years now (I’ve also had my first solo trip here last year) – and it’s funny, because I never found myself attached to any part of the world than here. Maybe because it’s the ideal place for someone like me; or maybe I’m just biased because art + books + coffee here are always on point.
I didn’t have a particularly new itinerary this time around, but I did manage to go to my usuals.
Case in point, Bras Basah Complex.
(In case you’re going to ask, you can read about my recommended art stores in Singapore here.)
Nothing has changed, except for my list of things to buy – which has obviously escalated 1000x since the last time I visited. Spent an hour in Art Friend going nuts over which twine to purchase, which type of watercolor paper to play around with, and which new pens to devour with my art materials fund. I also got myself a membership card so I could get a discount the next time I visit. Heh. (Also, side note: the cashier thought I was an art student there, lolol maybe soon)
The painstakingly beautiful aisles of the art materials section in Art Friend. (Alternative caption: sorry, wallet, huhu)
Another struggle I had to face was which magazine and book/s to take home in Basheer Graphic Books. I ended up taking home a Tokyo guide map, 99u‘s latest book, Make Your Mark, and a copy of The Great Discontent (which is currently my life bible – so many realizations!). I was so close to getting the Kinfolk and Frankie issues on the stand but I knew I was going to walk the whole day…under the sun…with a heavy backpack. So nevermind. </3
True enough, 90% of my trip did involve walking under the heat of the Singapore sun, which was…exhausting. I’m just glad the buses and trains had good ventilation; so did the malls. I got to cool off a bit during down time.
Kitty cat from Chinatown says hi!
Took a quick detour to Chinatown during a really hot day. Contrary to me being Chinese, I’m actually not that fond of Chinatowns…except Singapore’s. It’s always an interesting sight especially on weekends when it’s crowded and alive. I went on a weekday so it wasn’t really packed, which was good for me.
Met up with my friend Chloe after for some roti at Upper Thomson Road. So sad she’s leaving for Manchester in a couple months for University. :(
I met Chloe over Instagram (!) last year when I posted about visiting Singapore. A year later, I’ve visited Singapore thrice and managed to catch up with her and tour around the city every time I visit.
On another occasion, I sneaked a few minutes in my schedule to drop by the Lasalle College of the Arts, aka dream school. I looked like an idiot, really, so I just ninja-ed my way through the area, got an application form and left quickly.
I have always, always dreamed of studying art abroad, and I’ve never gotten to fulfill it. Not to feel bad about it, but it’s now one of those “maybe” goals I’ll achieve someday – just not this year. Heh.
Side note: check out that beautiful serif typography below of Draft. I can’t. It’s too pretty. ;_;
And this overwhelming (it was huge) exterior of the school. Can I apply now? (lol)
Also: this street photo is my favorite – it was along Prinsep Street, on the way going to LaSalle.
Spent one hot afternoon at Duxton Road. I was supposed to have coffee at Department of Caffeine but it was closed, so I walked a bit and visited Littered with Books for some literary fuel.
Downtime spent wisely at Group Therapy illustrating and taking notes from my 99u book. It wasn’t super crowded as well, which I liked.
More walking at Haji Lane, the so-called hipster fashion district of Singapore.
I like it, but I wouldn’t say I’d stay there for a reeaaally long time. It’s a nice place to get inspiration, though!
Ended my 4-day trip with my last meal in Singapore, brunch from Wild Honey at the Mandarin Gallery. Pretty good stuff.
I don’t know if work took up so much of my week the time I visited Singapore, because there wasn’t really a takeaway I got from the trip – well, except, to take a real break and cut myself some slack, which are two things I’ve been trying to tell myself since forever, and I haven’t managed to change quite much.
Nevertheless, I had fun. My favorite parts? Commuting with headphones on, people watching, and realizing how liberating it is to be alone in a foreign country without no one to think about but myself. Call me selfish, but I’ve been giving so much of myself already that maybe, just maybe, this could be the best way to redeem parts of myself that I have long forgotten.
I hope to visit Singapore again, but maybe with more artsy friends so I won’t act like a weirdo every time I geek out on art and books and coffee. :)