I swear there is a magnetic field that attracts me to sitting right on the wing during every flight I am ever on. EVER. There’s no getting around it. My view is always of that big, flat, grey monster. BUT when I had a layover in Singapore in 2010, I was lucky enough to get a view of the harbor upon landing. Wow.
As far as airports go, Singapore’s Changi Airport got it right. There is a butterfly sanctuary. There is a coy pond. There is free internet. What more can a girl ask for?
Flying into the city is stunning—a major skyline and more big-rigger ships than I’ve ever seen in a harbor. It’s a shame that I didn’t have a chance to make it into the city as I had to check in and transfer to my next flight but I have definitely added it to the tour de world list.
But let’s get back to the airport. It may be because at the time I was reading Walter Kirn’s novel Up in the Air (just watch the movie; it’s more interesting and it has Clooney) or because I have a chronic case of the travel bug but something has made me a serious airport cynic—a spider crawled over my leg as I sat on the floor in Bali’s Denpasar’s international terminal. Singapore’s joint is clean and gigantic with tons of couches to crash on and plenty of outlets to plug in to. This is important when all you want is the familiarity of your own computer. I shouldn’t compare the tropical small port of Bali to the huge crossing over point for millions of internationals in Singapore. But I’d definitely rather spend my five hour layover here, drinking Tiger beer and eating Wanton soup and watching white business men try to eat with chopsticks when they are so clearly pleading for a fork.
When I got to the transfer desk the guy informed me that chewing gum is illegal in Singapore and I stuck a piece of spearmint Extra into my mouth. I did not spit it out. Instead, I asked him if he was going to send me to jail.