Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Raining in Singapore

It rained this afternoon, a torrential downpour that made the Marina Bay Sands vanish for half an hour and the sky turn black. But, Singapore being organised as it is, the rain soon stopped again, which meant I could go running tonight without any fear of precipitation.

For once, Singapore let me down again, because despite the implicit promise of a dry night, it did rain, a drizzle that started half an hour into my run and gradually intensified as I got closer to home. Early in the run I saw a brass band, practising in the park. Never in Hong Kong have I seen a man with a tuba and seven accomplices, parping away in a public space. Yet in Singapore this is apparently unremarkable.

As I got closer to the brass band, it became clearer why they were practising outdoors, miles from any home; they weren't very good. The closer I got, the more it sounded like they were playing their instruments backwards. And no, I wasn't going fast enough for relativistic effects to mess with my perception of time, before all you Einsteins chip in.

I ran on; during the first half of the run, with clear skies, Singapore still looked lovely. The Singapore Flyer glowed in the distance, its reflection shining from the surface of the Marina reservoir. I wasn't having that good a time out there tonight; legs stiff from yesterday, a stomach filled with a Subway footlong that I unwisely chowed down on at 7:30, before returning to the hotel to fester instead of heading straight out for a run.

One other annoyance about Singapore is how many people ride bicycles. On the pavement. Without any lights. Lights are not expensive in this part of the world and they help you to not ride into people, or large holes, or trees, yet not a single cyclist seems to have heard of them. They just wobble along the paths, not giving any impression of situational awareness, which occasionally means somebody leaps out of their way (perhaps I'm just envious: people walking towards me when I'm running have never given way). One guy tonight rang his bell, went past me, then bimbled along at slightly more than walking pace while I nearly overtook him, before he woke up and started pedalling. Come on people, you only get credit if you shred it.

I got back as it started to chuck it down, to find my shoes were falling apart; several parts of the sole have fallen off now, and I suppose the rest of the shoe will disintegrate soon enough. They were longlasting (they made it all the way through from 2009 and the Tokyo marathon) but they'll find their final resting place in a bin in a hotel in Singapore. So long, sneakers.

Today we came up with a name for my automatic Amazon bot; we're going to call it Lucky Uncle, which sounds a bit like a Singaporean soft porn star, which makes things even better. Doesn't it?


Post a Comment