After well over a full day of air travel, I am in Southeast Asia. This is my first time in Asia, first time over the International Date Line and the closest I've been to the Equator.
My plane touched down in Singapore at 6:10AM local time and I had an embarrassingly easy time getting through the airport and customs. I easily found an ATM at the airport and got myself some cool, multi-colored, multi-sized Singapore dollars.
Again, getting onto the MRT train was really simple. The fare cards make sense and the turnstiles are really high tech and…um work. A short ride brought me to the banking/government center where I randomly got off to look around.
The first subtle surprise was that there are no pigeons here. Instead, their niche is filled by small, tropical birds. Neat! After a few blocks in the humidity, I was ready to get a cab to my hotel. Oh, look…a convenient taxi stand! Hello pleasant Vietnamese cabbie.
Not surprisingly, my giant suite was not ready at 8:00AM, but that did not stop the reception gal from being very sorry and offering to store my bags and let me use the gym to shower. I must have looked rough. I passed on the shower. I got all checked in (credit card handed back with both hands, lettering facing me).
After exploring Orchard Road and locating Apple resellers and looking for old fashioned G4 PowerBook adapters (no luck), I went back, got into my room and in the words of Tim Gunn figured out a way to "Make it work."
That said, I am experiencing some bizarre Internet behavior. Some pages, not being found with Firefox (BBC, Gap, NPR), but working in Safari. Pages (like VOX) displaying as if Firefox did not support in-line graphics. I has a Mosaic/Netscape flashback of blue and purple text links for a few minutes (and have no desire to go back to Web .9, thank you very much).
Thank goodness the iPhone works fine on the local wireless network and I signed up for AT&T's new global data plan before I left. Yay! I've seen quite a few cracked iPhones here, but no one puts cases on them because they don't want you to mistake them for normal "handphones"
While out, I visited Toys-R-Us and verified that Annika will agree to live in Singapore: