Malaysia, Day 2: A glimpse of Singapore

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Life can be so simple. At 7am, the hotel room wakes me up with CNN. I take a quick shower and head for breakfast. It's continental, with lots of coffee. Then I decide to go shopping, on Singapore's main shopping street, Orchard Road. The parade of shops is well known: Cartier, Bally, Gucci, MontBlanc, what have you. I for one have a Subway sandwich for lunch and take a Starbucks espresso as my afternoon tea. I do some more shopping. At night, I head for Burger King and take a big whopper. I make it in time to see Star Wars Episode 2 at the movie theater around the corner.

Boy am I glad that this wasn't my day. My day could have looked like this but didn't. Singapore is full of all the Western products and shops you can imagine. I can buy Ritter Sport chocolate, Starbucks coffee, Bally shoes, and IKEA furniture. I can even buy stuff at a MoMA arts store! Orchard Road, the main shopping district, is a truly impressive tribute of a largely Chinese society to Western culture. I'm curious how the Singaporean government will maintain "Asian" or "Chinese Values" given this onslaught of Western marketing and lifestyle savvy.

Tomorrow, I'll be on the Express bus to Melaka! But I will return to pay my dues to this metropolis.

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