Dec 28, 2012

The Cockroach Dance

Some people fear snakes, others fear heights or spiders. I am deathly afraid of cockroaches (but don't get me wrong, I'm scared of big hairy spiders too). In saying that, I’d rather have a spider on my face, than a cockroach anywhere near me.

So you’re probably wondering what the cockroach dance is. It basically consists of hopping around on your tip-toes, alternating from one foot to the other, while trying not to touch the ground at all so that cockroaches can not run over your feet.

And this was my first experience of Singapore. In my head, this was my rationalization of Singapore thus far:

Singapore = cockroaches

Cockroaches= hate, disgust, fear

So Singapore = hate, disgust and fear to me.

And that was the only legitimate rationalization at that moment. I couldn’t be talked out of it.

Our hostel wasn’t in the center of town, but off closer to the Little India district. It was a small, damp, rundown building with cockroaches running freely around the streets outside. I almost cried. I was not sleeping in a room where huge, fat disgusting cockroaches were running around nearby. ABSOLUTELY N..zzzzz – and then I passed out from exhaustion.

Needless to say, I survived the first night. In my morning clarity, I realized I couldn’t let some disgusting, creepy crawly dictate my adventure to Singapore, so I decided to shell out more for a nicer place closer to town. It ended up being a great idea since we were able to find an AirBnB room centrally located, in a converted storefront. There were only a few other rooms rented out, and was quiet, clean and the woman who ran it was extremely helpful.

Downtown was beautiful (and immaculate) - much better than where we had been the first night. Public transportation was fast and easy, and people were so friendly.

But the food, now that was the kicker. Singaporeans love their food. There are hawker centers everywhere full of rows and rows of stalls selling some of the best food I’ve ever had. Indian, Arabic/Halal, Chinese, Malaysian, Singaporean, Vietnamese, Thai and even British food can be found around the city at these hawker centers, and everything is so quick, easy and cheap. The hardest part is deciding what you want to eat.

Chili crab

Beef satay and rice triangles
In the two and a half days we were there, at least half of our time was spent discovering as many hawker centers around town as possible. And this is how we have planned our trip – around all the food!


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