Tuesday, August 6, 2013

And summer passes at the speed of light...

It's been such a busy summer session here in my home-away-from-home. My time has been spent largely between my apartment at Fusionopolis and the Singapore Institute of Management, teaching a 400-level public relations course to 100 undergraduate students. Teaching 15 weeks worth of material in 5 weeks was quite a feat, but in the end, a very enjoyable, action-packed time!

Though time was tight, I did get some great experiences in! My friend Cheah invited two friends and me to an opening of a restaurant, Carnivore at Marina Square Mall. Having never been to a restaurant opening, here OR in the States, it was a great experience! Lion Dances, an opening show by Kumar, and lots... and LOTS... of great food made it a memorable evening. This Brazilian barbecue featured a wide array of buffet items, from fresh-carved meat to seafood, fresh veggies and fruit. I'm definitely planning a return trip!

One weekend I went to Marina Bay Sands with new friend and colleague Allison, where we quite accidentally stumbled upon one of the rehearsals for Singapore's National Day. What a sight! What patriotism! What a lucky right-time-right-place experience! Even though I'll be missing National Day, I felt fortunate that I got to see the rehearsal!

And of course, every day I had the joy of getting to know the students of UB-SIM. This semester, I felt lucky to have several returning students from past classes as well as newcomers. 

From new games to new food, every day is a joy. To the left is a student, Hui Ying, who surprised me in my office with traditional char siew (barbecue pork) and wanton noodles for lunch from her family's food stall. What a treat! To the right, I've just played my first round of a traditional Chinese card game called "Four Colors", or Si Se Pai 四色牌" with students Isaiah, Charissa and Vivienne. The game has similar elements to Rummy, and I'm afraid I had a bit of beginner's luck!

"Majulah Singapura" is Singapore's national anthem and means "Onward, Singapore" in Malay. I saw this scene this morning and it epitomizes, to me, the culture of this nation - always building, always growing; as cranes reach skyward in the early morning light, so the country marches on, reaching ever upward. Happy early National Day to my Singaporean friends (I'll be flying out on Thursday) - I'm looking forward to another year of memories together!


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