singapore | rome

you know, when i was (notice the past tense) in rome and people asked of what I liked about rome, I often stuttered and seriously paused, not knowing what to say. the loneliness, the frustrations with transportation and the torrid weather made it tough for me to really discern what was really good about rome.

well, now that i’m back in singapore for a (well-deserved, may i say?) break, the inevitable comparisons start and I start realizing what exactly i miss about rome and what i love about singapore.

for singapore:

1 – fuss-free, smooth and efficient transportation system that’s fully air conditioned, runs pretty much on time and gets to most places.

2 –  weather/infrastructure – whilst humid, singapore rarely ever gets scorching what with considerable cloud cover. also with a much built up infrastructure, air conditioned passageways and the plethora of shopping malls, you can pretty much escape the heat

3 – english, be it the queen’s variant or the mangled singlish one. (thank you)

for rome:

1 – stunning outdoor attractions nearby – yes, im gushing about the beaches once again, but honestly, living in Singapore is kinda like being thirsty whilst stranded on a raft in the middle of an ocean – the irony isn’t lost considering that Singapore is a small island with quite a bit of sea around it, but there’s nary a nice beach or inviting, clean stretch of coast. =(

2 – fresh fruits, right from the market. oh man.. my mom bought cherries today and to my utter horror i noticed the price tag of 17.90sgd for them – something that would be cost barely 4euros in rome. one thing i really love about rome is how the different seasons and times bring about different fruits in season, all which are so juicy, sweet and delicious – be it apricots, peaches, prunes, figs, honey melons, watermelons, grapes, strawberries (the watermelons here look positively shriveled here) and so on. i don’t really get it actually – why is it that the fruits in rome look so vibrant in color, so engorged in size and so appealing, whereas fruits in singapore look kinda sad and shriveled.

3. fresh food, natural and thick with flavor – i think i now understand why italians like to eat so simply, without much thick  overpowering sauces and flavors as compared to alot of singaporean dishes. methinks its because the freshness of the local produce is really something on its own and needs no other enhancements. be it the olive oil, the tomatoes, the meat and vegetables, there is a certain richness and natural flavor that i feel like is missing when i am eating food here in singapore. and that, to me, being a foodie in singapore, is sad news.

so yeah, that’s how i see it currently. given a choice where to stay at, i’ll still pick Singapore though. its ultimately still where all my friends and family are, and that’s really what matters for me. (and here ends my national day plug =))


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