Year of the Snake at Singapore’s Chinatown

Worked up a sweat walking through Chinatown, but it was interesting soaking in the Chinese New Year atmosphere. I saw some very well dressed tourists and wondered how they could bear the heat.

It’s the year of the snake but I have to confess I didn’t find any of the snake toys or decorations appealing. They were trying their best to make it look cute but they still didn’t appeal to me. I have a friend E, who is terrified of snakes so this year’s decorations will freak her out, no matter how cute they try to make them.

B commented that this year’s decorations are a tad boring. But I told him that they probably haven’t put it all up yet as Chinese New Year is still a month away.

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B liked the pig shaped ba kwa and I liked the heart shaped one. But as he told me, this is quite a waste. You’re paying more just for the design.

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Snake toy decorations that didn’t quite appeal to me. I wonder if there will really be fewer births this year compared to the dragon year. But some of my favourite people are born in the year of the snake. Also it’s best to go against the norm if you’re kiasu as there will be a smaller batch to fight with when it comes to places in school. Boy am I glad I don’t have to concern myself about things like this. Even if I did, I probably wouldn’t care as much.

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Recently I was looking out for budget hotels for friends, but I had no clue that budget hotels in Singapore are so expensive. This particular hotel in Chinatown which is a pretty good location is well above S$100 a night. And those below a S$100 seem quite dismal with hardly any standing room and no separate cubicle for a pleasant shower. When I travel the most important thing is the bathroom at the hotel being decent.

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I liked the juxtaposition of Chinese lanterns and the stone cows at the hindu temple. A sign of harmony in Singapore.

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A pink merlion T shirt. Might appeal to tourist but no Singapore would wear something like this. I think it’s the same everywhere in the world.

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I was so tempted by these delightfully red rambutans. But there were too many people crowded at this stall as the owner declared proudly that her rambutans are prettier than you or me (in Cantonese).

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I’m sure everyone is looking forward to the long Chinese New Year weekend. Chinese New Year falls on Sunday, 10th February 2013, so both Monday, 11th February and Tuesday 12th February 2013 will be public holidays. That makes for a 4 day long break. I’m quite sure everyone will try to take leave around that time to make it an even longer break. I tend to like to do the opposite, Take a break when no one else is on holiday. That to me seems more worthwhile as I don’t like jostling with the crowds.

About bookjunkie

Blogging about life in Singapore & recently cancer too.
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6 Responses to Year of the Snake at Singapore’s Chinatown

  1. $100 is way too expensive for Santa Grand. Check out Beary Hostel?

  2. Katrijn says:

    A decent hotel in Singapore is definitely very hard to find under SGD 100 a night… I’ve been looking for our parents as well, and have decided it’s not feasible – well, not if they want to be in walking range of our appartment anyway! Maybe a bit further out there might be some nice places, haven’t looked there.

    The one thing that really stands out from last Chinese New Year is actually how quiet the city was! We had guests visiting and everything was closed – the only time that’s ever happened to us in Singapore 🙂 So even if you like the quiet, Chinese New Year seems a good time to be off 😀 It’s like Christmas and New Year’s Eve back home with everybody sloping off home to be with family. It felt a bit lonely, in fact…

    • bookjunkie says:

      that’s quite true. It’s the one time the whole of Singapore seems to shut down. Either they are overseas or with family at home.

  3. I have to imagine its a hard act to follow a dragon year no matter the zodiac sign!

    We’ll still do some decorations, but the snakes are not as much my cup of tea as the tigers, rabbits and dragons were

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