Urban Tropical Ecology in Singapore

A (Chinese) New Year and Tiger Beer
by -- February 16th, 2010

A bit more on CNY

I really do enjoy blogging but (bear with me reader) I want to apologize in advance if my posts ever seem delusional.  On one hand, I try very hard to record my memories day by day so that nothing is forgotten, but on the other hand I’m so tired by the end of the day that I just want to bullet everything and be done with it.  I guess that’s the first thing: our schedules are very busy.  Actually, the things that tire us out (ex. going to Chinatown on Chinese New Year) are so far mostly optional.  It’s good to see that everyone is making the most out of his/her time in Singapore.

And that brings me to the first big happenings so far.  After an orientation with Drs. Dan and Orbach about our itinerary, which sounded more like an all-inclusive vacation package more than anything else, we decided to visit Chinatown in celebration of Chinese New Year.  A few things were immediately noticeable: a lot of red, a lot of people, a lot of FOOD.  Claustrophobes beware! The streets were lined on both sides with stalls selling dresses, trinkets, decorations, infomercial items… and everything in between!

The food (and we’re big on ordering different things and sharing) was excellent and I had a chance to pick up on an old favorite from back home: tang yuan (chewy floury balls filled with sesame paste/other fillings, boiled and served in plain, ginger or peanut water.  Recommendation: for a sweet treat that won’t fail you, go for the black sesame ones with ginger water.  Definitely underrated compared to the heavier, thicker main course dishes, and just as delicious!

Tang Yuan

Tang Yuan - Mmmmm

The crowds got tiring to navigate through after a while; on certain streets you’d literally be pressed against the person in back and in front.  It was certainly an experience though, and this being Singapore it was FAR cleaner than one would have expected such an event to be.  But hey, I didn’t see any fireworks! (see previous post by Sharon)

Tiger beer. Beer is still beer, no matter where you go.  That is to say, it is still disgusting (in my opinion).

Happy Year of the (Metal) Tiger!

Peace, Happiness, and all those other good wishes written in gold, highlighted with paper lanterns.

Lanterns

Lanterns - Under a temple awning

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