singing the praises of singapore

so in speaking with singaporeans, they are justifiably proud of their city/state/nation. it’s a multicultural, 21st century city which is safe as houses, pristine, successful. singaporeans are multilingual, well-educated, and tolerant people. many singaporeans are also incredibly grateful to the british. for when they pulled out of singapore in 71, they left behind a strong infrastructure and booming international economy. singaporeans know only too well what could have become of their beloved city – they’ve seen what happened in much of the rest of post-colonial southeast asia. laos, vietnam, cambodia are all prime examples of the shambles that were left behind like so much rubbish. they know they’re lucky. they love where they live and they love their lifestyles. so if i sounded a bit derisory about singapore being “soulless” in my previous post… well, i stand corrected. they know all too well what the alternative might have been – and that gives them a unique appreciation for their standard of living that few of us can understand. and that speaks straight to the heart.

personally, i would kill for their public metro. i recently read that per kilometre, taking the tube is more expensive than flying – something i can all too readily believe. and yet for not even half the price, you can ride the gleaming, quiet, efficient, and modern SMRT.

so where the hell did the brits get it wrong?

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