Christmas Is Coming!

You wouldn’t know it to look at people’s apartment windows, but Christmas is on its way, and Singapore is very much into it.  Condo lobbies and big stores all have decorations, and the major shopping street, Orchard Road, is awash in lights:

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img_8031You can’t walk very far without running into very large Christmas decorations:

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img_8044img_8040They also have all sorts of live performances, including this one by what appeared to be some sort of a Zumba class.  You never really know what you’re going to see on stage in Singapore.

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Some of the fancy stores have elaborate decorations.  And while nothing is as elaborate as New York City store windows, I loved these Christmas prairie dogs:

Prescott and I also went to see the lights at the Singapore Botanic Gardens.

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IMG_8163.jpgThe walkways at the Botanic Gardens are lined with hundreds of trees, each of which is sponsored and decorated by a person or an organization.  Lots of the ornaments are made out of recycled materials — empty soda bottles appear to be a favorite — and many of the decorations have been created by elementary school kids.  The whole thing has a refreshingly unprofessional feel; it’s very un-Singaporean in that way.

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Of course, there are plenty of large decorations that they must bring out out every year.

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img_8179I loved that this snowman was made of Spanish moss and had air plants for decorations:

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And we found Santa!  With gnomes!!!

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For those of you who aren’t feeling the Christmas spirit, I’ll share some of my favorite signage of late.  It’s Singapore, so there have to be a few things you can’t do:

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I like the slogan on that one.  Someone should turn it into a bumper sticker.

Singapore has a new green campaign, which includes an invitation to create “endearing towns.”  I have no idea what those might be.img_7977This campaign also includes new mascots (Singapore loves mascots, and they always have names).  Go Zippy Maree!

As I was walking in Jalan Besar, I saw this sign:

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I’ve seen “falling rocks” and “falling branches” signs before (and have never known what to do about them), but this one was new to me.  I just kept walking and hoped a pallet wouldn’t fall on my head.

Finally, I found this sign outside of the Tibetan Buddhist temple:

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This is the first time I’ve been to a place of worship and have been told explicitly that I may not worship a particular deity.  Of course, when I looked up “Dorje Shugden,” I found myself more confused about the prohibition than I was when I started.  So there’s no risk of my violating this rule.

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