AM ERICAN AS S O C IATION O F S INGAP ORE
American Association..... 1-5 Member Discounts............. 3 CRCE & Business............... 6 Community News......... 7-10 Passports, Please!....... 11-21 Education........................ 22 Arts & Culture................. 22 What’s Happening.......... 23
Community News 7-10
Arts & Culture 22
Passports, Please! 11-21
100 Acts of Charity: Supporting our Sailors
Classroom Without Walls: the Benefit of Travel
Singapore Chinese Orchestra – Meet the Man Behind the Music
Join us for a Journey Around the World
MCI (P) 197/03/2017
All That Glitters in the Golden Triangle By Katie Baines
Photo by Katie Baines
f romance could be mass-produced then Rajasthan would be a good place to build a bottling plant. With its barren desert scenery, fairytale sandcastle forts, pastel-washed cities, dust-speckled light and its shrouds of ruby, magenta and marigold fabrics, it would be difficult to resist the seduction of India’s largest state. Yes, it can be noisy, dirty, chaotic and with pockets of distressing poverty. But, for adventure and sheer spectacle, Rajasthan is hard to beat. From Singapore, Rajasthan, located in the northwest of India, is reasonably easy to get to and travel around. Regular flights to New Delhi deliver you to the doorstep of the state’s ‘Golden Triangle’, comprising Delhi, Agra and Jaipur, which offers a tightly packed collection of cultural delights and is usually explored in that order. First stop, the staggeringly paradoxical city of Delhi: breathtaking squalor, overpowering smells – some
good and some very bad – nestle alongside grandeur and color. For grandeur, we started at the Red Fort. The main residence for the emperors of the Mughal dynasty for nearly 200 years (until 1857) its halls of public and private audience, domed and arched marble palaces, plush private apartments, a mosque and elaborately designed gardens are a sight to behold. Not to be missed is the somber and serene Birla House to the south of the city where the footprints marking Mahatma Gandhi’s final stroll across the lawns lead to the place where he was assassinated. The house now serves as a museum to the memory of Gandhi and exhibits plaques of his forward-thinking musings about progress, education and equality in India. On from Delhi, we took the train to Agra; home of the Taj Mahal. One of the best-known buildings in the world and arguably the most beautiful, with its intricately decorated marble, inlaid with precious
gems. The architecture is sublime and its gardens are exquisitely manicured, but it is the story the mausoleum embodies that attracts seven million visitors every year. It is a monument to the great love the Mughal emperor Shah Jehan had for his queen, Mumtaz Mahal. They could not bear to be apart and Mumtaz would even travel with her husband into war. It was on one such crusade in 1631 that she died after giving birth to their fourteenth child. Consumed with grief he devoted himself, to the point of obsession, to a 14-year project, employing India’s finest architects and craftsmen, to construct a befitting shrine for Mumtaz. Cruel twists of fate did not end for the Shah with the death of his wife. After falling seriously ill he was placed under house arrest by his power-hungry and opportunistic son, Aurangzeb. Continues on page 11
American Association of Singapore’s Centennial Partners
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Singapore American · October 2017
A message from the President...
SINGAPORE AMERICAN NEWSPAPER
Community spirit – So often, it’s in times of adversity that we truly see what people are made of. We’ve had some difficult times over the past month, including off the shores of Singapore with the collision of the USS John S. McCain, and in the US with the natural disasters in Texas, Florida and Oregon. At this difficult time for so many, it’s heartwarming to see the American community, and the wider community here in Singapore, come together to offer help, assistance and support for friends and strangers. From donations of goods, cooking meals, and volunteering time with sailors here in Singapore, to sending aid to those impacted by natural disasters in the US, the outpouring of help was immediate and abundant. What’s on at AAS this month? – As we go to press, we’re getting ready for our Welcome Back Celebration on September 24; we can’t wait to welcome new families to Singapore and to catch up with our old friends over some good food and a few drinks, too. Look out for the photographs in the November issue of the Singapore American newspaper. The AAS office has moved to the Thong Teck Building on Scotts Road and we’re really looking forward to our members joining us for an evening of Chit and Chat. We have limited space, so book early for your chance to come, check out the new space, and catch up with us. 100 Acts of Charity – AAS members enjoyed a morning of helping out and giving back at Willing Hearts in September. If you missed this and would like to get involved, we have organized another opportunity to get together and lend a hand at Willing Hearts in October. As part of our centennial year, we’re working our way towards our target of recording 100 Acts of Charity by the end of 2017 and would love to showcase the good work that is going on within the community. Find out more about how to get involved on page 4. Save the Date – We’re already making preparations for the 2018 George Washington Ball, which will be returning to the W Singapore at Sentosa Cove. We can’t tell you too much about it just yet, but needless to say it is the not-to-be-missed event on our social calendar, so mark your diary for February 10! Happy Halloween – Finally, I would like to wish you all a very happy Halloween. The residents of Woodgrove, Woodlands will be welcoming trick or treaters as usual this year. So, if you’re looking for some good, old-fashioned US-style Halloween fun, get your little ones decked out in their scariest costumes and head on up to Woodlands. I look forward to meeting you at an AAS event soon. Best wishes,
EDITORIAL Editor-in-Chief: Cath Forte, firstname.lastname@example.org Publishing Editor: Sarah Alden, email@example.com
DESIGN & LAYOUT Graphic Designer: Miia Koistinen, firstname.lastname@example.org
ADVERTISING Advertising Manager: Valerie Tietjen, email@example.com
CONTRIBUTORS Nate Brown, Melindah Bush, Ed Cox, Kevin Cox, Abha D. Kaul, Priscilla Koh, Kelli Lane, Bill Poorman, Laura Schwartz, Marc Servos, Kinjal Shah, Eric Walter For AAS: Katie Baines, Cath Forte
AMERICAN ASSOCIATION BOARD MEMBERS President: Stephanie Nash • Vice President: Shawn Galey Treasurer: Michael Borchert • Secretary: Joseph Foggiato Directors: Sammie Cheston, Blair Hall, Bill Poorman, Brian Schwender, Jenn Wood Immediate Past President: Glenn van Zutphen • AmCham Chair: Ann Yom Steel The American Club President: Kristen Graff • AWA President: Rohita Rajkumar SACAC Chair: Greg Rutledge • SAS Chair: Dr. Chip Kimball Non-Voting Members: US Embassy: Tor Petersen US Military: Rear Admiral Donald Gabrielson
PUBLISHER – AMERICAN ASSOCIATION The American Association of Singapore (AAS) is a professional, not-for-profit organization established to enhance the well-being and living experience of Americans residing in Singapore and to promote relationships, both business and social, between Americans and those from different cultures and nationalities. 15 Scotts Road, #03-02 Thong Teck Building, Singapore 228218 T: (+65) 6738 0371 • F: (+65) 6738 3648 • firstname.lastname@example.org • www.aasingapore.com The Singapore American newspaper, a monthly publication with readership of 10,000+, has been published by the American Association of Singapore since 1958, with the purpose of enhancing the expatriate experience in Singapore.
SUBSCRIPTION Stephanie Follow us on Facebook or Twitter: @AmAssocSG, (hashtag #AmAssocSG for all social media).
Due to unforeseen circumstances, we are unable to hold the Turkey Trot this year. Instead, we are delighted to be partnering with AWA to invite members and guests to a Thanksgiving Picnic. Centennial Passports will be stamped at this event in place of the Turkey Trot.
A subscription to the Singapore American is complimentary with an AAS or CRCE membership. AAS annual family membership is just $70. CRCE membership is $160. To join, visit www.aasingapore.com and have the Singapore American delivered to your home. Reproduction in any manner, in English or any other language, is prohibited without written permission. The Singapore American welcomes all contributions of volunteer time or written material. The Singapore American is printed by Procomp Printset Pte Ltd, 57 Loyang Drive, Level 3 Annex Building, Singapore 508968.
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Singapore American · October 2017
Chit and Chat: Housewarming for AAS Members
Innovation as a Business Driver
We’ve moved office and to celebrate we’re opening our doors to our members. Come join us for a drink and some nibbles, meet other members and get a behindthe-scenes glimpse of where we make the magic happen for you. 6-8pm AAS Office (new location!) 15 Scotts Road, #03-02 Thong Teck Building, (S)228218 Free for AAS members, but registration is required. Limited space available.
Helping Hands at Willing Hearts
Do you have some free time to lend a hand to the less fortunate in the community? Join volunteers from AAS at Willing Hearts to prepare, pack and distribute meals to those in need in Singapore. Register to show your support for this charitable act. 8:30-11:30am Registration is required.
American Footprints in Singapore Tour
As part of our centennial celebrations, we take a look at the influence of the USA – its policies, people and practices – on Singapore, and the development of the strong relationship between the two countries. This guided tour will focus on history, education, the military and business, with specialist speakers at each stop. 9am-12:45pm Starting point details to be provided. $60 AAS Members $70 Non-Members Refreshments and transportation included.
For more info and to register for an event: www.aasingapore.com
It was a night of networking and knowledge-sharing, as AAS and Money Matters for Expats presented the Innovation as a Business Driver event on August 23 at The American Club. Members and friends mingled over wine and nibbles, as they enjoyed an informative talk. Special guest speaker and experienced industry leader, Pradeep Pant, offered his insights on how innovation is becoming the most important driver, both for growth and survival, and what this means for large and small businesses alike.
Coffee Connexions We had two great Coffee Connexions mornings last month. One was full of mingling and exchanging of numbers, while the other was a more intimate meeting of close chat and in-depth discussion of what it means to start over in Singapore. Privé Orchard was a very accommodating host and kept the coffee flowing while we swapped stories, experiences and ideas. Good times had by all.
Let’s Talk Travel “Down Under” Australia Expat Travel’s founder Vicki Baensch shared her top tips and insider knowledge on all things Australia and New Zealand, in a lunchtime talk held exclusively for AAS members on September 15. Members learned great tips and tricks for planning a fun, educational and memorable dream vacation “down under.”
AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF SINGAPORE PRESENTS
the 85 th George Washington Ball February 10 • 2018
It’s almost time...
W Singapore - Sentosa Cove
...for the big reveal Early Bird tickets on sale in October www.aasingapore.com
AAS MEMBER DISCOUNTS
AAS members enjoy discounts at a range of local businesses. Present your AAS membership card at time of purchase. Please see a full list of discounts at www.aasingapore.com/member-discounts.
AAS members enjoy 2 hours free handyman service (valued at over $200) on their moving day when booking a move with Allied Pickfords.
Present AAS membership card to receive 15% off total bill. Valid for dine in on a la carte menu at all Brewerkz and Cafe Iguana restaurants through December 30, 2017. Limit to one (1) redemption per bill, per table. Not valid on
concert days, eve of and on public holidays. Not valid with lunch menu, other set menus, discounts, vouchers, promotions or privileges. The management reserves the right to amend the terms & conditions without prior notice.
Book online using promo code SGAME17 and enjoy a 10% saving on regular fares or a 5% saving on promotional fares in Business Class and Economy Class to the United States, Europe and Colombo. www.emirates.com/sg
Get a six-month free membership to Expat Living magazine. Redeem: www.expatliving.sg/aas
Present your AAS membership card and receive $10 in vouchers when you sign up for a Warehouse Club membership. Valid till December 31, 2017.
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Singapore American · October 2017
100 Acts of Charity
Be a part of our 100 Acts of Charity initiative!
art of the American Association’s 100 year history in Singapore has been a strong commitment to charitable work. We felt that a great way to celebrate our centennial year would be to record 100 acts of charity in Singapore. We want to showcase the good work of our members, sister organizations, community partners and friends in our community. If you’ve been busy helping in the community, we’d love to tell your story. Every issue of the Singapore American newspaper has a feature dedicated to this initiative, so please get in touch if you have a story to share: 100ActsofCharity@aasingapore.com and help us to reach 100 by December 31, 2017!
Helping Oogachaga at Pink Dot
AAS member, Michael Wollensak has been volunteering for five years at Oogachaga, a registered charity specializing in providing LGBTQ+ affirmative support in Singapore since 1999. In July, he and his husband, Noel Yumang, helped out at the community tent at Pink Dot, encouraging attendees to provide ‘self-care tips’ and to take tips for themselves.
Supporting our Sailors
AAS member, Anna Bryant helped out at the USO Crew Support Center at the naval base in Sembawang. She donated her time to greet sailors from the USS John S. McCain and to support them in a friendly, family-like environment at the center.
Helping Hands at Willing Hearts
AAS members helped cut vegetables, package bread, and deliver meals to elderly Singaporeans through Willing Hearts.
Follow 100 Acts of Charity on Facebook: www.facebook.com/100ActsofCharity
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Singapore American · October 2017
End of a Century: The 1990s By Marc Servos
he last decade of the twentieth century was a time of rapid technological advancement. By the early nineties, personal computers had become increasingly common in households and in the workplace, leading to the Internet revolutionizing our access to information and the way we communicate by the middle and later part of that decade. The 1990s also defined a new era in world affairs. The Cold War was in its final throes with the downfall of communism in Eastern Europe, which led to the Reunification of Germany in 1990 and the Dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991. Unrelated to this, the United States led a coalition in the Persian Gulf War of 1990-91 to drive Saddam Hussein’s Iraqi forces out of Kuwait. US military involvement also occurred in Somalia and the former Yugoslavia during the following years. I first visited Singapore in September of 1999. Singaporeans had already been enjoying a high standard of living, although the Asian Financial Crisis of 1997 created setbacks from which some sectors took years to recover. Leadership changes saw Lee Kuan Yew step down in 1990 as Prime Minister. Succeeded by Goh Chok Tong, the nation’s founding father continued in an advisory role as Senior Minister. In 1993, Ong Teng Cheong became the first President of Singapore to be elected directly by the people, following changes to the constitution in 1991; previous Presidents had been chosen by Parliament. Ong held office until 1999. Some significant changes also occurred in the American community. The US Navy Commander, Logistics Group Western Pacific and Navy Region Center Singapore in Sembawang is a result of the 1990 United States-Singapore Memorandum of Understanding. Two major local American establishments relocated to their present facilities in 1996; the Singapore American School moved to Woodlands and the US Embassy to Napier Road. The American Association of Singapore’s (AAS) theater group, which later became known as Singapore Theatre’s American Repertory Showcase (ST*ARS) saw its annual musical productions come to an end. It began in 1973 with a performance of The Music Man and its final show, Oliver!, was presented in 1992. ST*ARS has since evolved to the Singapore Repertory Theatre (SRT) and has no formal ties to AAS. Another AAS milestone was the establishment of the Career Resource Center for Expatriates (now Excellence), in 1998.
Marc at Orchard Road in 1999.
US Embassy moved to Napier Road in 1996.
Controversy erupted in 1994 when 18-year-old American Michael Fay was convicted of the vandalism of cars and was sentenced to six strokes of the cane in addition to a four-month jail sentence. Bill Clinton negotiated a lighter sentence with Singapore President Ong, which reduced the caning to four strokes. I’ve seen many changes since my 1999 visit. Current high-profile landmarks such as the Esplanade, VivoCity, Marina Bay Sands and the Singapore Flyer did not yet exist. Much of my time during that visit was spent between Little India, which continues to retain its character to this day, and Orchard Road, which has seen moderate change since. Ngee Ann City and Wheelock Place both opened in 1993. Located away from Orchard Road, Clarke Quay Festival Village had opened as a conservation project in 1993, and it has changed significantly since that initial visit. Other 1990s establishments include the Singapore Art Museum (1993, the former St. Joseph’s Institute), Bugis Junction (1995, comprising of colonial-era shophouses) and Suntec City (1997). Sentosa in 1999 looked very different, when visitors could travel around the island on the old monorail. I visited several attractions that have since gone, including Underwater World and Dolphin Lagoon, which had opened in 1991, and the Musical Fountain. Other bygone attractions included Fantasy Island, which later closed after several accidents (including two fatalities), and Adventure Asia Park, which operated a rollercoaster, closing in 1998. I made my first of several visits to Fort Siloso then, and it continues to look mostly the same, with a few minor changes. As the decade, century and millennium was approaching its end, a worldwide IT crisis was predicted. Some people believed that networks would crash, owing to Y2K (the change in double digits from 99 to 00, to indicate the new year). But the world welcomed 2000 with relief. Many readers probably remember the 1990s as being almost contemporary, yet the technology that was entering new frontiers then has come a very long way since. Marc Servos is a Hoosier in terms of his home state and alma mater. The Fort Wayne native and US Army vet is married to a Singaporean and has been living here for a number of years. He has two children, ages 15 and 7.
Stars & Stripes
Photos courtesy of Marc Servos and Singapore American newspaper archives.
STA*RS final performance: Oliver!, 1992.
Keeping in touch at CRCE coffee, in December 1998.
Singapore American School relocated to Woodlands in 1996.
CAREER RESOURCE CENTER FOR EXCELLENCE PERSONAL & PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
“The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.” WALT DISNEY
Up Close and Personal with Kate Marsden, Brand Evangelist and Raconteur Tell us about yourself… I’m originally from Brisbane and, like many Aussies, I love travel so my initial career move was to get involved in the travel industry working in business development and strategic marketing. This led me to make a move to Manchester in the UK where I met my now husband and we decided to come to Singapore on a bit of a whim. That was four years ago and we’ve since gotten married here and had a beautiful baby boy. What made you decide to move to Singapore? As cheesy and silly as it sounds, love brought me to Singapore! The UK was great, I loved living in Manchester and was really happy, but there was nothing keeping me there so when my husband got a job as a teacher in one of the international schools here I took the plunge and came with him. We’re really happy in Singapore. Although living overseas has its challenges, being a new mum has shifted my own expectations of the country, which has helped me to feel more settled. How did you find out about AAS/CRCE? I actually have a friend who works there! After having our baby, I started to think about getting back to work and dabbled in a few projects but wanted something that offered more structured employment. She told me about CRCE, the workshops and the career counselling where you can plan your re-entry to the job market. Very quickly I found the role as marketing manager, or should I say Brand Evangelist and Raconteur, for Expat Insurance on the CRCE jobs board, and I love it. They’re a really fun company. In your opinion, what’s good about CRCE? It’s a great service. The jobs board is updated regularly so I found exactly what I was looking for almost straight away. You also know that the jobs available on the board are geared towards expats so you can be confident you’re applying for something that you’re eligible to do. The career counselling service is ideal to help members get focused on their goals. I never thought I’d be working in the insurance sector, but the company culture is vibrant and dynamic, and a really good fit for me.
CRCE WORKSHOP Effective Networking Speaker: Geetika Agarwal Friday, October 6 10am – 12pm
Can you share with us some information about your role? As a marketing manager, my role is very varied: I curate and manage all of the content on the website; I take care of social media; and I orchestrate campaigns. There’s an element of public relations and maintaining relationships with external stakeholders, there’s events management – it really is a job where I feel stimulated and that my career is being developed. As someone on a dependent’s pass I thought this would be difficult to achieve, but there really are opportunities out there and I feel lucky to be part of an organization that supports so many amazing women. What advice can you share with new expatriates looking for a job in Singapore and/or anywhere else in the world? I would say don’t necessarily expect to find an exact replica of your last job; it helps to be openminded and flexible. Have a think about your transferable skills as well, in terms of your personal skills – don’t confine yourself to the box you were in before. There are a lot of opportunities out there but you need to network and talk to people; I think the key is finding them through your contacts because they know you, they can vouch for you and they can be the most supportive for you.
Whether you like it or not, you have to network if you want to expand your professional contacts. But it doesn’t have to be just exchanging business cards and making small talk, sometimes networking can actually be fun as well. Join this workshop to learn how to do it effectively.
Are you an employer with an opening to fill? Did you know employers can list jobs for free on the CRCE job board? Log onto www.aasingapore.com to find out more.
Photo by Katie Baines
LOOKING TO REINVENT YOURSELF? AAS OFFERS PERSONALIZED CAREER COUNSELING SERVICES. SIGN UP NOW FOR A PRIVATE APPOINTMENT WITH A PROFESSIONAL CAREER ADVISOR. PLEASE CONTACT CRCE.INFO@AASINGAPORE.COM
SPOTLIGHT ON JOBS Membership Design Intern/Volunteer A leading international business association is looking for a flexible intern to support its Membership and Marketing team. The candidate will assist with generating creative and smart design concepts for membership, create graphics and design layouts for print ads, brochures, website sliders, e-newsletter ads, event backdrops, pull-up banners, and social media content. (job #3502) Project Manager, Contract The Project Manager (PM) will advise and support university level student teams on two short-term projects. The PM will also liaise with our two clients (non-profit partner organizations) and oversee project quality. The ideal candidate will have manager-level experience in at least one of the following areas: finance, management consulting, strategy, operations and/or working with both for-profit and nonprofit areas of focus. (job #3501) Marketing Intern/Volunteer One of the largest business organizations in Singapore is seeking a marketing/ communications intern/volunteer. You will be assisting with membership, marketing lead generation and qualification of prospects, identify themes and stories for weekly web content; drafting weekly web content and post content as needed. You will also be participating and publishing social media campaigns. (job #3500) Front Desk Officer One of Singapore’s premier clubs is looking for a versatile and resourceful front desk officer to welcome members and guests. Duties will include maintaining knowledge of programs and events, re-directing calls and taking messages, handling check-ins-and-outs as well as other administrative duties (job #3499) Graphic Designer As part of the Marketing Team, you’ll design, create and edit all digital and print marketing material, including posters, flyers and the bi-monthly magazine. The candidate will be able to develop and design visual concepts for online and offline marketing campaigns, produce excellent graphic artwork, be responsible for the design and content of email marketing. (job #3498) Senior English Language Teachers (FT/PT) We are looking for passionate English language teachers to join our academic team. They will prepare and deliver lessons, tutorials and remedial classes according to the course syllabus. This will include conducting private or group classes, preparing written and oral tests for students, developing course contents, providing academic support to students, participating in orientation and marketing events. (job #3497) Dental Hygienist Our practice is looking for a Dental Hygienist to join our team. We offer a flexible schedule, including full or part-time opportunities, competitive compensation and benefits. The candidate must be a certified Dental Hygienist who qualifies for registration as a Dental Hygienist in Singapore and is required to have at least one year experience as a Dental Hygienist. (job #3496) Business Development Officer We are looking for a communication savvy Business Development Officer. Specific experience is not necessary as you will be trained on the job. You will work closely with the CEO managing client relations, conducting in depth research on clients and related industry and liaising between clients, senior staff. To be successful in this role you will need to possess a can do attitude, think outside the box at times and be very organised. (job #3495)
7 Singapore American · October 2017
Celebrating a Milestone with the 2018 ASEAN Business Outlook Survey By Kelli Lane
ach year, in collaboration with the US Chamber of Commerce and the other American Chambers of Commerce (AmChams) in the region, AmCham Singapore surveys business executives from US companies across Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) about their perspectives on the business climate and opportunities in Southeast Asia. The findings are presented in AmCham Singapore’s annual publication, the ASEAN Business Outlook Survey (ABOS). This year, in celebration of the 50th anniversary of ASEAN and the 40th year of the US-ASEAN Dialogue Partnership, AmCham produced a special commemorative edition of ABOS. The report highlights that ASEAN markets continue to grow in importance to American companies in terms of worldwide revenues, levels of trade and investment, and profits. Over 90% of respondents indicate that these have either risen or remained the same over the past two years and that they will either rise or remain the same over the next two to five years. The most frequently cited reasons underpinning these expectations are the region’s economic growth prospects, the rise in its middle/ consumer class, and progress on regional integration. Over 70% of respondents report that their companies plan to invest in other countries in ASEAN, while more than 60% plan to make additional investments in their response location. Vietnam, Myanmar, and Indonesia are among the top investment destinations. 58% of respondents’ companies are expanding their local workforce in 2017. US companies in ASEAN see solid growth in local markets throughout the region with 74% of executives expecting profits to increase by 2018. Some of the most promising sectors for US business include software/IT/telecommunications, healthcare, and consulting. To view the full report, visit the AmCham website: www.amcham.org.sg/public-affairs/publications. Since this is the travel edition of the Singapore American newspaper, AmCham staff participated in a survey. When asked which ASEAN country was their favorite travel destination, the top choice was Thailand, with 60% of the vote, followed by 30% selecting Vietnam.
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Singapore American · October 2017
Adventure in Nepal By Nate Brown
he Boy Scouts of Troop 10 were pleased to go to Nepal for the Far East Council Scout Camporee from July 28 to August 6. We started our journey in Kathmandu and from there drove northwest into the mountains near the city. We camped at Kakani International Scout Centre at an elevation of 2,000 meters and saw several of the world’s tallest mountains, including Annapurna. We almost got to see Mount Everest but the clouds didn’t allow it. August is the rainy season in Nepal and many tents were flooded throughout the camp. Boy Scouts from across Asia joined us for the camporee, coming from over a dozen cities including Shanghai, Tokyo, and Jakarta. During the first part of the trip, we were busy earning merit badges in subjects such as Archery and Geocaching. We also participated in Scout activities with Nepali Scouts, including tomahawk
throwing, Morse code, Kim’s game and a pioneering challenge. After our stay in the mountains near Kakani, we traveled to the city of Dhulikhel in Nepal’s Kavre province. We spent three days volunteering on a service project with Habitat For Humanity Nepal. The Far East Council has a strong relationship with Habitat for Humanity, which is present in many locations, including Nepal. Habitat for Humanity Nepal is busy rebuilding houses after the earthquake of 2015, which destroyed many buildings. Scout Troops were split into three groups and went to different areas in the town to help build houses. All troops did different things. Troop 10 carried rocks, gravel, cement sand and bricks from the rest area up a small hill to build a house. We also laid down the concrete and helped make mortar and build the walls. Other troops built the bricks that we used and dug foundations for other houses.
We spent our last day sightseeing in Kathmandu. We visited the Swayambhu Stupa, a Buddhist temple, and a tea shop. We also went to a temple where they filmed some of the movie Doctor Strange. Next summer, Troop 10 will join the camporee in Mongolia.
Photo courtesy of Ed Cox
News from Cub Scout Pack 3010 By Melindah Bush
he Cub Scouts and families of Pack 3010 are ready for another exciting year of new adventures in Scouting. We began with our annual Recruitment Fair, held at the Stamford American International School (SAIS). This was an opportunity for families to learn more about our US Cub Scouting program, open to boys of all nationalities in Grades KG2 to Grade 5. During the Recruitment Fair, Scouts could purchase their formal uniforms and other Scout gear at our pop-up store, as well as learn to launch foam rockets in Stamford Yard. Some of our returning Scouts also earned their Recruitment badges by volunteering to work at our welcome table during the SAIS Orientation program, where they had an opportunity to share their Scouting experiences. Now our Scouts are gearing up for two upcoming adventures, including our Fall Pack Hike Day and our annual Raingutter Regatta model sailboat race. For the Fall Pack Hike, our Bears and
Webelos Scouts will have an opportunity to practice their orienteering and survival skills in the jungles of Singapore, while our younger Scouts will focus on hiking safety and wildlife observations. Every Scout will continue to practice their Leave No Trace and Outdoor Ethics skills to ensure our hikes do not impact the environment negatively. This year’s hikes will also include additional opportunities for our Scouts to practice their first aid, fishing and biking skills, while exploring the natural beauty of Singapore. In addition to the Fall Pack Hike, our Scouts are busy building and decorating their model trimaran sailboats for our annual Raingutter Regatta. The fastest boats in this indoor model sailboat race will win prizes and every Scout will be recognized for his woodworking and painting skills, as well as his good sportsmanship in the first big competition of the school year. If you are interested in learning more about our Cub Scout
program for boys in grades KG2-5, please visit our website at www.sgpack3010.org or contact us directly via email at: email@example.com. Although Pack 3010 is based at SAIS and most meetings occur on campus, the Pack is open to boys from any school and from other nationalities.
Photo courtesy of Melindah Bush
SCOUTING IN SINGAPORE Boy Scouts Troop 07: www.bsatroop07.org Boy Scouts Troop 10: www.facebook.com/BSATroopX Cub Scouts Pack 3010: www.sgpack3010.org Cub Scouts Pack 3017: SGPack3017@gmail.com Girl Scouts: www.singaporeusagirlscouts.org
9 COMMUNITY NEWS
Singapore American · October 2017
Beyond the Classroom By Kinjal Shah
“The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.” – Saint Augustine
eople often broaden cultural and intellectual horizons through infinite possibilities, and once-in-a-lifetime opportunities during travel experiences. At Singapore American School (SAS), developing an awareness of cultural norms through first-hand experience begins in middle school through the Classroom Without Walls experience where students travel to Malaysia, Indonesia, and islands around Singapore. These experiences encourage students to become increasingly aware of social norms and expectations. As students make personal connections with the people they are learning from and about, it helps them internalize and navigate cultural differences more confidently. The ability to operate outside of one’s comfort zone is yet another benefit of travel. Trust, risk-taking, goal setting, resiliency, and cooperation are just a few of the traits that the Classroom Without Walls program aims to instill in students, who further develop their own environmental awareness and cultural sensitivity through participating in activities specific to each trip. Often, students gain perspective – “connecting the dots” so that economics and geography lessons are more than mere words on a page. According to Victoria Sparrow, Class of 2015, “Going to underdeveloped countries always has a way of putting things in perspective, but going to Bhutan provided me with a perspective that I hadn’t considered before. I think that I learned more about Bhutan and the culture driving around in a bus for four hours, observing my surroundings (including the architecture) than listening to the guides talk.” Recounted as one of the most beloved memories by alumni, is the longstanding Interim Semester tradition which makes up an integral part of the high school curriculum. In the 1970s there was a growing feeling that changes taking place in Singapore and the American community were isolating SAS students from traditional Asia. Interim Semester was born out of this concern and since 1973, thousands of SAS high schoolers have traveled around the world to experience incredible learning opportunities and diverse educational experiences beyond the traditional classroom. For one week during second semester, all regularly scheduled high school courses cease while students and teachers participate in an extraordinary global program. According to Interim Semester coordinator Dan Skimin, “The program provides students with experiences they may otherwise never have. There is always a great buzz around school when the topic comes up. Teachers enjoy the opportunity to work with students in unique learning environments and students love the array of activities they can participate in. From sleeping in snow caves in Japan to learning about technical theater in London, Interim Semester has always been a well-loved learning experience.” Students have 60 different programs to choose from – from hiking the Routeburn Track in New Zealand to completing service projects in the Philippines to learning Spanish in Barcelona.
The program deepens students’ understanding of the world around them, inspires students to contribute to the global community, encourages them to challenge themselves, and builds a sense of community. Last year alone, 1,194 students participated in 57 courses, spanning 20 countries across the globe as they experienced eco-adventures, global studies courses, and impactful service opportunities. Another high schooler, Ritzky Widjaja, Class of 2015 said, “Once you immerse yourself in nature and let yourself experience the Interim Semester the way it’s supposed to be, you will definitely appreciate the experience. You get to tackle sheep, shoot rifles, abseil down a cliff, build your own shelter, fish in the rivers, go eeling at night, and gaze at the stars.” Truly, an SAS education extends to challenging learning experiences outside the classroom, across the region, and around the world. To find out more about Singapore American School, visit: www.sas.edu.sg. Photo by Elysia Chang
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Singapore American · October 2017
Navy League Rallies the Community to Help Sailors from the USS John S. McCain By Priscilla Koh
n August 21, news broke early in the morning that a collision had taken place between a Liberianflagged oil tanker and a US warship, off the coast of Singapore and Malaysia, east of the Strait of Malacca. USS John S. McCain (DDG-56), an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, was on its way to a port call in Singapore when the mishap occurred. The ship is one of several under the command of Destroyer Squadron 15, Seventh Fleet, with a home port in Yokosuka Naval Base, Yokosuka, Japan. The ship continued on into Singapore where recovery and damage assessment operations commenced. A large majority of the crew was offloaded and housed in the US Navy community in the Sembawang area. To provide support to the crew during their extended time in Singapore the United Service Organization’s (USO) Expeditionary Support Group established a temporary “Crew Support Center” for rest and relaxation. Volunteer support was initially provided by the military community at Sembawang, but it was clear that relief would be required to sustain longer term operations. The Singapore Council of the US Navy League, led by President, Ray Corrigan, and Vice President, Mike Little, who coordinated all volunteers, gathered a group of more than 50 volunteers from within the American Community. Volunteers included members of the Navy League, American Association of Singapore, American Chamber of Commerce, American Women’s Association, The American Club and the US Embassy. The volunteers have been going out to Sembawang to man shifts at the USO Crew Support Center and will continue to provide support until the ship and crew transition from Singapore in late September. Feedback from the US Navy and USO has been outstanding. Howard Seo, USO Director of Expeditionary Operations said, “Your volunteers have been amazing. They have realized the needs
of the sailors and have even been bringing food in the evening. This has been a massive success, since the sailors are not eating before arriving at the USO. I do thank them very much for their support.” Captain Jeffrey Hutchinson, Commanding Officer, US Navy Region Center Singapore said, “...fantastic support from the American Community... Not only great support to the sailors but really needed relief for our first responders here in the military community at Sembawang. Thank you [Navy League] for leaning forward to link the volunteers up with our team to come together as a smooth-running support group.” The Singapore Council of the US Navy League would like to thank all volunteers for their time and service at the USO Crew Support Center. We would like to highlight the efforts of Ms. Renee Watkins, Ms. Sunita Riar and Ms. Melinda Murphy for their willingness to come forward and also provide their organizational skills in running this operation. Photos courtesy of US Navy League Singapore Council
Sailor from USS John S. McCain and Vincent Kasten.
Sunita Riar, Michael Little and Darlene Kasten.
11 Singapore American · October 2017
Continued from page 1
Confined to a room at Agra Fort, he lived out his days gazing from the window at his beloved’s final resting place in the distance. He was reunited with her after his own death eight years later. Due to the heavy air pollution that hangs over Agra there is an on-going cleaning program to remove its yellowing effects from the building’s exterior. Currently one of the minarets is covered in scaffolding and there are plans to clean the facade and dome over the next year. From Agra we took a four-hour train journey to the city of Jaipur, which allegedly had its buildings washed pink, the color of welcome, for Prince Albert’s visit in 1856. Though the streets are just as crowded, the traffic just as chaotic and the beggars just as present, this city is much less hectic than Delhi and there’s something incredibly seductive about it. Of course, it’s much smaller so the comparison is unfair, but nevertheless Jaipur is instantly intoxicating. It’s worth spending time trawling the bazaar-style markets; in a world of mass-produced goods, these markets are among the few places one can find wares that are truly unique. Also worthy of a visit is the observatory, Jantar Mantar. This is a small park populated by giant versions of astronomers’ instruments, one of which is the largest sundial in the world. Transporting visitors to a world of Alice in Wonderlandlike proportions, the park is surreal yet still practical, and a tranquil place to escape the throng of the city. Breaking away from the triangle, we continued in a southwest loop to two other great Rajasthani cities: Jodhpur and Jaisalmer. Every inch of Jodhpur, the blue city, hums with life and activity. There are no pavements; only narrow alleyways where homes and shops sit juxtaposed next to crumbling havelis; old mansions with their grand entrance gates and carved balconies, offering a glimpse of how Jodhpur’s nobility once lived under the shadow of Mehrangarh Fort. The fort itself is breathtaking. There is plenty to see inside, including gilt palanquins and jeweled daggers, but it is after dark when it is at its most striking. Visit any of the hotel rooftop bars at night to get a vista of the fort lit up in all its splendor. Jaisalmer is the most western city in Rajasthan and sits in the middle of the Thar desert. This ancient golden-walled city started out as a trading post on the spice route. Now it stands proud, a seeming mirage on the horizon, and home to over 65,000 residents living in ramshackle havelis that punctuate its narrow streets; a living museum. Sadly, the infrastructure of the city is slowly crumbling as a result of over population, modern-day sanitation and public utilities. One last hurrah before the long road to Delhi and our eventual return to Singapore; a camel safari. A sore posterior is inevitable when sat astride one of nature’s most curious of beasts, but the trade-off is enormous fun. The opportunity to spend the night under the desert stars, after a generous meal of daal, pakoras and rich vegetable curry cooked over an open fire was priceless. Some operators offer trips as long as two weeks, but a tour leaving at 3pm and returning at noon the next day was more than sufficient. There is little doubt that, even for the most seasoned traveler, India is a challenge. Every one of your senses will be confronted, but if you embrace everything that India presents the rewards will be bountiful. Photos by Katie Baines
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Singapore American · October 2017
On the Silk Road in
Uzbekistan By Abha D. Kaul
n March, we travelled to fabled destinations long on our family’s must-do list: the ancient Silk Road cities of Samarkand and Bukhara. These historic spots along the world’s oldest trading routes are located in present-day Uzbekistan, a Central Asian nation and former Soviet republic. In Tashkent, we were pleased to see the capital’s roads lined with majestic planes or chinars, also Kashmir’s iconic trees. In the old city’s sprawling Charsu Market, we were struck by a mind-boggling variety of spices, dried fruit and sweets, meats and vegetables, and many common Persian and Turkish terms featuring in our own Hindi, from char for crossroads (four) and bozori for bazaar or market to zeera (cumin), piyoz (onion) and badaam (almond). Worth viewing in modern, cosmopolitan Tashkent is a sacred Islamic relic, one of five oldest seventh century Qurans compiled by Othman Caliph, written on deerskin. A ride on the Tashkent Metro is recommended, and a stroll around Amir Timur Square, Independence Square and a visit to the city’s museums. A fast train to Samarkand whisked us comfortably into the fertile, green Zarafshan Valley, acclaimed by long-gone travelers and invaders, such as Alexander the Great, Marco Polo and Timur. They headed here to partake of the riches of Transoxiana (land beyond the Oxus), the Greek name for this region between the Amu and Syr Darya rivers. The heart of ancient Persian Sogdgiana and “Jewel of the East”, Samarkand became a renowned commercial, cultural and scientific node where many roads converged. Timur made it his empire’s capital in the fourteenth century and lies buried here, in the exquisite Gur Amir Mausoleum. Ironically, he built this stately tomb for his beloved grandson who died young; a few years later Timur was enshrined here as well. The stark beauty of Gur Amir’s bright azure dome against a terracotta background is remarkable; gorgeous, intricately decorated ceilings and walls in astonishing blue, white, turquoise and green mosaic dazzled us everywhere in Samarkand and Uzbekistan. The city’s sights are simply fantastic: spectacular Registan Square framed by three imposing madrasahs; ruins of the enormous Bibi Khanum’s Mosque; crypt-filled Shah-i-Zinda Necropolis; and brilliant Ulugh Beg’s Observatory. There’s almost an overload of beauty and incredible craft to admire in the fine tilework and colorful, geometrical and floral mosaic patterns adorning each monument from the Timurid period. The Mongols destroyed much of old Samarkand before Timur’s time, but the ruins of historical Afrasiyab, the ancient city “by the black water”, delighted us. It was a treat to see its famous palace frescoes preserved in the site museum, rare seventh century Sogdian art depicting important ambassadors presenting themselves to the powerful King of Samarkand.
The Tomb of Saint Daniel nearby was an unusual and peaceful spot, believed to be where remains of the Biblical prophet were brought and interred. A visit to a quiet village paper mill was enjoyable, to see the traditional way of making Samarkand paper from mulberry trees, reportedly learned from captured Chinese “slaves” in the mid-eighth century – the first place outside China to manufacture precious paper. We drove past cotton, wheat and garlic fields, mulberry orchards and rows of poplar trees, to charming Bukhara, a prominent intellectual capital of the Islamic world in its heyday, and today a walking city with a UNESCO World Heritage historic center. The amazing sights are too numerous to list, but the jewel-like ninth century Ismail Samani tomb is an architectural marvel that stands out, with sophisticated basket-weave-like designs fabricated from light tan brick. Once a city of ponds, its last existing one is Lab-i-Hauz, surrounded by attractive sixteenth and seventeenth century mosques and lodges. The striking, oversized Kalan Minaret, near the majestic Kalan Mosque, dominates the scene. Having miraculously survived the onslaught of Chinggis Khan, it is among the earliest structures that employed turquoise tiles on clay in the twelfth century. Bukhara’s bustling trade domes, filled with gold jewelry, fur pieces, spices and teas, saddle bags, embroidered suzanis, metal objects, woolen rugs and more, transported us to an era when merchants from afar exchanged myriad products and ideas right here. The Magoki-Attori Mosque, built on the foundations of an older Zoroastrian temple, is now fittingly a carpet museum – Bukhara sources prized, eponymous rugs with their medallion patterns on red backgrounds. We bought three beauties ourselves! The most fun we had was on Navroz, the Persian New Year celebrated in Uzbekistan as a national holiday. Crowds thronged the grounds of the Ark, a fortified earthen citadel constructed by the mighty Emir of Bukhara in the sixteenth century. We watched a celebratory procession as long ceremonial trumpets played from ramparts above and free food was offered to the masses below. Delicious Uzbek fare was ubiquitous – kebabs, naans, and the unforgettable rice and meat plov, whose taste and fragrance linger in our memories long after our exotic travels. Abha has lived in Singapore for 17 years and is a docent with the Friends of the Museums. She enjoys travelling, lecturing and writing, and leads study tours to better understand and appreciate Asian cultures and civilizations. Photos by Abha D. and Ajai M. Kaul
Dried fruit stall at Tashkent’s Charsu Bazar.
9 th century Ismail Samani tomb in Bukhara.
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Singapore American · October 2017
Interiors of Timur’s sister’s mausoleum.
Grandpa and children resting at Shah-i-Zinda complex.
Uzbek musician playing Silk Road instrument.
Saint Daniel’s Tomb in old Samarkand.
Inviting Silk Road Tea House in Bukhara.
Afrosiyab Palace frescoes at the site museum.
Bottom page 16: Samarkand’s spectacular Registan Square. Bottom page 17: Navroz celebrations at Bukhara’s Ark citadel.
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Top Tips for Traveling with Kids By Ed Cox
rustration is what happens when expectations don’t match reality. Because of this, managing expectations, both yours and those of your kids, is critical to the success of a family trip. Remember that kids have a different sense of time than adults. For example, you might say, “when the plane lands, we’re going to our hotel.” But when the plane lands, what you’re actually doing is waiting to deplane, walking to customs and immigration, finding your luggage, changing currency, and getting in a cab line. When this happens, kids think you changed the plan when you just skip all those steps in your head. Here are three areas where it pays to manage expectations as you plan your trip to make travel with kids more pleasant for everyone.
Plan for Short Attention Spans Maybe this is the trip of a lifetime for you. Maybe you’ve been waiting for years to see this building in person, or to visit this city. Hopping on a flight did not radically transform your children. Whatever attention span your kids have at home is the attention span they brought with them on the trip. Keep that in mind. When we took our kids to Paris, we wanted them to see the Louvre. It’s possible to spend hours or even days in that magnificent museum, strolling through the galleries and admiring the masterpieces that stretch all the way up to the vaulted ceilings. It is not possible, however, with an eight-year-old. Set your goals a little lower and you’ll find it leads to greater satisfaction for the whole family.
“Get your kids involved by letting them pick some of the attractions that you’ll visit.” Determine the essential things that you want to see in your destination. The big ones, so to speak. Hit them with a generous helping of breaks and snacks along the way. Did our trip turn my kids into experts in the intricacies of the Renaissance movement? Not even close. But they don’t hate museums, which can be a side effect of looking at the works of Dutch masters for hours on end.
Avoid Food Fights Food is an area where I am willing to compromise with my kids. Put yourself in their shoes. They’ve been pulled away from everything they know as familiar to move to Singapore. Then you’ve done it again for a vacation. There are strange sounds, strange smells, and signs in languages that they can’t read. Suddenly, they see a familiar trademark sign above an American franchise. Maybe it’s one that they haven’t seen since you left America. Indulge them. Up to a point, that is. Explain in advance when you will, collectively as a family, try new foods. Doing this in advance is very important. Springing congee on a kid at 7am when he has his heart set on waffles (for the third day in a row) is a recipe for disaster. Order the familiar fast food from time to time. But while you’re doing so, make it a learning experience. Talk about how the food is different than it is back home. Spend some time looking at the menu in the restaurant. Ask your kids how the menu is different from the one that they’re used to.
Ask Them to Help Plan It can’t all be museums. Get your kids involved by letting them pick some of the attractions that you’ll visit. Maybe it’s a simple afternoon at the pool or the zoo. One of my family’s favorite activities is to go to the movies in a foreign country. Much like the fast food, going to the movie theater in another country can be an educational experience as well. How do the ticket prices compare to the prices back home? What about the commercials they show before the movie? Do they have subtitles? We’ve noticed that movies are even edited for content when shown in more conservative countries. Ed Cox is the author of Travel With Kids: How to Travel With Kids Without Losing Your Mind. He blogs about travel at www.nomadicdragon.com. Photos courtesy of Ed Cox
Singapore American · October 2017
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Singapore American · October 2017
Marvelous Melbourne By Laura Schwartz
f you’re from Boston or Chicago, Melbourne may feel familiar. Universities divide the streets among them. Historical structures are a natural part of the cityscape. Eschewing a single heart, the cities separate into a family of neighborhoods, each with its own twist on a fun night out and on the best meal in town. Melbourne’s character as a whole is laidback, artsy and friendly. Dogs greet strangers with wagging tails. Bartenders and waiters offer ready jokes and recommendations. Sports are taken seriously but don’t reach blood feud levels. The crowds that fill the Melbourne Cricket Ground are often the same ones to descend on the National Gallery. The Central Business District (CBD) is busy during the week but it lacks the frantic bustle of New York City or Singapore. After a few minutes of walking, the small cluster of skyscrapers melts into two-story buildings and old brick workers’ cottages re-appropriated into shops, restaurants, bars and of course, Melbourne’s famous coffee shops. Though second to Sydney in size, Melbourne is often considered Australia’s cultural capital, and a stroll through the streets will illuminate why. Painted murals climb walls. Live music spills out of cafés. Poetry readings draw crowds to bookstores. The city boasts over a hundred galleries, the most resplendent being the National Gallery of Victoria. Architecture is quite European in style, with the grander landmarks dating back to Victorian times. Even small residences sport trimmings of vintage iron filigree. But Melbourne’s most well-known expression of creativity has to be its food scene. As a local friend commented, “It is difficult to get a bad cup of coffee here.” Many cities are food-obsessed, but what sets Melbourne apart is its access to fresh, cheap produce. The majority of food and beverages are locally grown and high quality, from a modest sausage roll with a beer to elevated gourmet cuisine with a cocktail. International chain restaurants have a very minor presence. There are two large urban farms less than 5km from the
Interior of National Library.
city center, as well as 20 government-funded gardens on public housing estates. But the commitment to progressive, eco-friendly food preparation isn’t limited to restaurants and large ventures. With eight bustling fresh food markets and over 300 community gardens, the average city dweller can afford an organic lifestyle. I even strolled past a house with lemons and pomegranates growing around the entryway. While there aren’t as many raw attractions and there isn’t as much for kids here as in Sydney, Melbourne is a veritable paradise for the indie crowd: architectural history buffs, coffee aficionados, musicians and artists. It’s also a very walkable city. Beginning with the grouping of the National Gallery, Arts Centre and Hamer Hall, stroll across the Yarra River to gaze up at the historic Flinders Street Railway Station. Weave through Chinatown to get to the majestic National Library and explore the cluster of bookshops in the area. Continue east for a peek at the art deco style Her Majesty’s Theatre and then the iconic 1850s Princess Theatre, before admiring the stately Parliament House and St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Northwards lies the Royal Exhibition Building surrounded by landscape gardens that possums bounce through after sundown. A few blocks west will take you to the trendy, quirky shops of Grattan Street, which is intersected by Lygon Street with its wealth of warm, lively restaurants and the famous Readings Carlton bookstore. Then, when your feet get tired and your mind is whirling, the dinging trams will carry you back to the city center. That is, if you can resist stopping in to eat in every joint along the way. Laura Schwartz was born in Ireland and grew up in Japan, Singapore and New Jersey, finally becoming an American citizen at age 18. She graduated from Bard College in 2010 with a BA in Japanese Language & Culture. When she’s not traveling or devouring a new book, she juggles her 9-to-5 as an Admissions and Career Consultant with freelance writing. Photos courtesy of Laura Schwartz
Royal Exhibition Building.
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Singapore American · October 2017
Meet Wandering Dentist, Dustin Pfundheller… the youngest person to visit every country in the world By Cath Forte
isconsin-native Dustin Pfundheller is a dentist with a difference. Since moving to Singapore around four years ago, he’s managed to visit every country in the world. That’s right, all 236 of them! I spent a fascinating hour with Dustin, bombarding him with questions about his travels… CF: When did you decide this was what you wanted to do? DP: Honestly, I didn’t really set out to do it. Many travellers plan to go to every country in the world and have this as their mission statement on their website, aiming to raise funds through sponsorship. I came to Singapore and was only planning to be here for six months, which then became a year. I was really keen to travel in the region and pretty much every weekend and every time I got time off, I’d go somewhere. As a dentist, I’m lucky that my working hours are really flexible. In Singapore, dental surgeries are open till later at night and also on the weekends, so I was able to work crazy hours for longer periods (think: 12-12, 16 days straight!), which then enabled me to take time off. So, I’d work super hard in the first half of the month, then take ten days off.
Papua New Guinea
CF: At what point did you realize you were close to setting a record? DP: I was denied entry into Israel and at this point I found I was so close to visiting every country in the world. I did not want to stop! With about ten countries left on my list, I set up my own website, detailing my travels in order to show how serious I was. I looked at Best Traveled, the go-to website for keeping track of all the serious travelers, and found that the youngest person verified to have visited every country in the world was 33; at age 30, I was close to setting a new world record. CF: And how many countries are there? DP: This is something travelers rarely agree on. Best Traveled says 193, FIFA says 211, Olympics: 206. There are some places, such as Taiwan and Kosovo that are not recognized as countries by the United Nations. Who knew Greenland wasn’t a country in its own right, but actually a territory of Denmark? (Not me! CF). Even so, I wanted to see the world, so I wanted to visit everywhere. If you combine these three and then add the Lonely Planet list, the end result is 236. So, if I went to all 236, there would be no debate about whether I had visited every single country or not! CF: What constitutes a visit? DP: every place I visited I made sure to clear immigration and get outside to explore; airport transit didn’t count.
CF: Did you have a route planned? DP: The longest trip I took was 19 days, which meant it was impossible for me to take one trip and go see all of Africa, for example (that took five separate trips). I planned my routes to fly directly between locations in the most efficient way and took lots of evening flights, so I didn’t miss out on the days. CF: What was the most expensive country to visit? DP: For me, it was Israel, as I had to hire a lawyer to get in! Aside from that, the most expensive for me was Antarctica; the flight alone is $5000. However, some people will pay that for a business class flight and there I was visiting Antarctica, so it was totally worth it!
CF: What was the weirdest thing you did? DP: There were many. One of the weirdest was having some car troubles in the middle of nowhere during a road trip in Africa, which ended up with us having to tie the car back together with my shoelace. Another was almost becoming dinner for a polar bear in Alaska!
CF: Were you able to do any charitable work while you were traveling? DP: I actually did quite a bit of charity work on my way around, as this is something that was very strong in my upbringing. I went to Pitcairn Island in the Pacific Ocean, the smallest territory in the world, with a population of about 50 people. It’s in the middle of nowhere, so when they heard I was a dentist they asked if I could see patients. I was there for five days, so I was really happy to set up and meet the locals; I even fixed the mayor’s teeth! CF: Do you have a favorite place? DP: Everyone asks that! It depends on the continent, really. A lot of travelers pick unusual countries, but mine are kind of normal. For me, if you’re going to go to Africa and you want the African experience, go to South Africa first. Why? They have their infrastructure in place; you can drive through the National Parks in a regular car and do your own safari, with no need for a four-wheel drive vehicle or a guide. This makes it totally doable on a budget. Another great thing about South Africa is that it’s close to other African capitals, which means you can take day trips to those places. I also love Thailand – the food, the beaches, the hiking, the temples – there’s a little of everything. CF: Any plans for anything else…now that you’re a World Record Holder? DP: One of the things I would like to achieve is traveling solo to every country; I think I have about ten countries to go. I’m not sure how I would prove it, but it would be a pretty cool thing to say I’ve done. You can read more about Dustin’s adventures and check out his amazing photographs at: www.wanderingdentist.com
Photos courtesy of Dustin Pfundheller
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Singapore American · October 2017
Top Tips for Traveling on a Budget Austria
Taxis: Negotiate your fares, especially from the airport. Try Uber, too. In the Philippines, a one-mile trip from the airport to my hotel was $20 in a cab, but only $1.60 with Uber. Stay local: Try websites like Airbnb or Couchsurfing for great deals on accommodation. Take carry-on only: Not only does this avoid extra costs with low-price airlines; you’ll also never have to worry about lost luggage. Choose Flights (and airlines) carefully: When I went to Africa, it was cheaper to get a budget flight to Bangkok and take a Kenyan Airlines flight from there. Foreign exchange: The best money changer I’ve found is in the arcade in Raffles Place; with about 30 different options, the competition makes for some very good rates.
Join the American Association of Singapore Today! Want to make friends and take part in fun social events? Join the AAS community to meet like-minded people and enrich your Singapore experience. www.aasingapore.com
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Singapore American · October 2017
Skiing Near the Bottom of the World By Kevin Cox
tanding high in the Andes Mountains in winter, the contrast of light and color can be confusing. Think blindingly white snow, brown high altitude desert and a sky so blue that it looks like the deep sea. Indeed, the Andes mountain range dividing Chile and Argentina in the Southern Cone of South America is steep, rugged and breathtaking for any mountain climber or extreme outdoorsman. But in Chile parts of it have been tamed and groomed for regular people and during the winter months converted from desolate wilderness to havens for this country’s favorite cold-weather sport: skiing. Chile, this long, slender country – most of which is more “down-under” than Australia – is home to some of the most exotic skiing on the planet. Because the Andes, the longest mountain range on earth, has so many peaks and valleys that many of them have no names and have rarely, if ever, felt the footsteps of modern man. There are few roads scaling these rugged slopes or plunging into its deep valleys, and those that are there can be challenging for most drivers and impassable without four-wheel drive. But in Chile, the most modern and developed country in South America, access to some parts has been forged – for skiing. And they offer a snowy wonderland that you’ll not likely find anywhere else. Chile’s capital, Santiago, is a shining example of what a Latin American metropolis can be with good planning and infrastructure. Nestled at the base of the Andes, 90 miles from the Pacific and about the same distance from Argentina, the cordillera of ever-present, snowcapped mountains is visible from everywhere. Even in summer the glaciers and snow glisten in the near distance of this city of seven million. So near that one can drive to modern ski resorts in the morning and be home for pisco sours and a great dinner in one of the growing collection of outstanding restaurants. In other words, for those who travel to ski, eat and get above sea level, Chile is hard to beat. The closest ski resorts lie only 90 minutes from the city, spread along a series of high plains and peaks in three valleys of the Mapocho River Canyon. This Tres Valles ski paradise hosts four very popular resorts: El Colorado, La Parva, Valle Nevado and world-renowned Portillo. Each has its own style and level of challenge for skiers and snowboarders, and all are interconnected through runs, chairlifts and gondolas. It’s a seemingly endless, sprawling collection of pistes ranging from beginner bunny slopes to expert double black diamond and
to backcountry skiing so extreme that it doesn’t even have a rating. This results in a combined 100+ runs, 56 lifts and dozens of off-piste, backcountry areas. And because they are interconnected by long runs and chairlifts, a good skier can ski all day and never hit the same slope twice. Best of all, at the base of each of these resorts are a collection of gorgeous lodges, hotels and condos that you can ski right up to. Getting to Tres Valles is almost as much of an adventure as the skiing itself. There is just one road, which is so narrow, steep and winding that on winter weekends it’s open in just one direction at a time: upward in the morning, downward in the afternoon. This road heads deep into gorgeous mountain valleys before climbing 40km to the tiny village of Fallarones where the road splits to La Parva, El Colorado and Portillo in one direction, and to the most popular family skiing resort of Valle Nevado, 18km in the other. Though paved for its entire distance, the drive to each of these ski havens is not for the faint of heart, consisting of up to 58 hair raising 180 degree hairpin turns, each steeper than the one before it. Tricky and tense, but totally doable for a decent driver. Skiing in the Andes is as beautiful as it is fun. Layers of mountain peaks and glaciers stretch out in all directions and from all heights, dominated by the summit of Cerro Colorado (18, 858 feet). From everywhere, one looks up at wind blown summits, down at jagged rock peaks and across at barren alpine desert and icy nothingness. Sure, there may be a couple of other places like this in the world that you can ogle at in magazines, but unless you’re an alpinist climber you can’t get to them. But in Chile you can, so long as you have a strong constitution behind the wheel, and a good set of chains on your tires. Because you’ll need both get to this most incredible high altitude skiing paradise in South America. Kevin Cox is a culinary explorer and writer in the US and Asia. For five years, Kevin roamed Singapore’s heartlands, making them his home and their food his obsession. Now, he’s based in Chile, discovering the many tasty neighborhoods there. He loves to get low to the ground and experience how people live and what they eat, yearning for authenticity in the food and passion by those who make it. Photos courtesy of Cooper Cox
Where to go Tres Valles is not the only place to ski in Chile – other, more remote areas are scattered in the Andes range. But the most popular and easiest to get to are here. To find out more about the skiing and accommodation options, check out the following sites: www.elcolorado.cl www.laparva.cl www.skiportillo.com www.vallenevado.com
Getting there While there is no public transportation leading to these resorts, car rentals in Chile are easy but the traffic on weekends can be thorny; especially on those steep, windy roads. Many private companies and ski shops have comfortable van services to each of the resorts with hotel pickups. This eliminates the need to figure out how to put the mandatory chains on your tires when the police stop you halfway up the road – which they will do when there is snow. Each resort, your hotel or any ski shop in Santiago can set you up in a van for a reasonable price.
20 PASSPORTS, PLEASE!
Singapore American · October 2017
Living and Traveling with Food Allergies in Singapore and Beyond – Can Lah! By Bill Poorman
hen the opportunity came for our family to move to Singapore three years ago, we were excited, of course. It would be our first time living abroad. But we had one big concern that could have derailed the whole plan: Would our son – who has multiple, severe food allergies and other environmental allergies – be safe? We had to figure out if he would be able to get proper medical care and if we could find the foods he needs and likes to eat. The answer, of course – since I’m writing this article – is yes. And with a little research and preparation, if a member of your family has food allergies or another allergic condition, you should be safe and satisfied, too. With regard to medical care and medical supplies, in Singapore, you’re covered. We have been able to get every medicine that we’ve needed. That includes Epipens and asthma inhalers. And the medical care that we’ve received regarding his allergies is just like what we had in the US. Our son has been through a couple of rounds of annual allergy testing, and he even has gone through one food challenge. The food challenge took place at National University Hospital, in a dedicated ward, staffed by a friendly and attentive set of nurses. As for food, we have found just about everything we need and want in Singapore. Many groceries, like Cold Storage and Jason’s, cater to western tastes and carry a variety of American brands, so you should be able to find familiar products. If you can’t find what you are looking for there, several natural goods stores stock brands designed for people with food allergies or intolerances. Since we live in Orchard area, we frequent SuperNature at the Forum, Brown Rice Paradise at Tanglin Mall, and Four Seasons Organic Market at Great World City. Still, there are some products that you likely won’t be able to find at any of those places. That’s where mail order comes in. We’ve had good luck with the online retailers iHerb and Amazon. If you live with food allergies, you are likely familiar with reading product labels to search for allergens and allergy warnings. The labeling in Singapore is quite good, and the imported products you’re likely to use come from countries with helpful labeling requirements. Also, Singapore relabels ingredients into English if they don’t arrive that way. One word of caution here, though: Make sure to always read the ingredients labels on familiar products. We have found some that are perfectly safe in the US, but have dangerous ingredients for our son here. For example, Oreos in the US contain no milk. But the Oreos sold here are manufactured on a line that also handles cow milk. Also, many local brands of essential items, like wheat flour or baking powder, contain milk. So far, with my focus on groceries, I’ve been assuming that you make all of your food at home. Given the severity of our son’s food allergies, that’s what we’ve always done. But of course, Singapore is legend for its hawker centers and restaurants, so you’re likely to want to try a few. Seeing as we carry all of his food from home, we’ve never tried to engage with food vendors or restaurant staff to have dishes altered in any way. You could still try this, I believe. Many servers in Singapore are aware of food allergies and would know what you’re trying to communicate. I know this because we always show up at restaurants with lunch bags, and when we explain that we are bringing in outside food because of food allergies, we’ve never been questioned. This understanding of food allergies extends to the schools in Singapore, as well. Our children attend Singapore American School. The administration, teaching and nursing staff have all been understanding of and attentive to our son’s needs. Now, maybe after you’ve been in Singapore for a bit, you might join the many other expats who have hired a live-in helper. Often these helpers cook meals. That can add another tricky dimension to living with food allergies. For example, we had to be very cautious during the interview process. We had to make sure she had a solid grasp of English because that’s the language of our recipes. We also needed to make sure she understood the dangers of food allergies, how to properly handle food to avoid cross-contamination, how to follow modified recipes, and what to do in case of a reaction. Once all of the risks and details were explained, we had a couple of candidates turn us down. But in the end, we found a wonderful helper who has benefitted us immensely during our time in Singapore. So, when it comes to living with food allergies and environmental allergies in Singapore, you should be well covered in terms of safety, medical care, and with additional help. However, when you travel around the Asia-Pacific region, it could be very different. Because you’re reading this, it’s likely that you made it through the plane ride over without incident. But there are many more flights to come, since getting to many sights in the region require air travel. As people who live with food and environmental allergies know well, plane rides can be very stressful. First, you have to pack food or make special arrangements for allergen-free meals with the airline. But even then, you might not be safe. For example, just this July, a threeyear-old suffered a life-threatening allergic reaction on a flight from Singapore to Melbourne after the passengers around him started opening packages of peanuts that had been served as a snack. Luckily, he was able to recover thanks to the medicine his parents had with them, but people with food allergies all live in fear of similar incidents. Singapore Airlines says it is reviewing its policies regarding having peanuts on flights. For our family’s part, we travel with eight Epipens and bottles of antihistamines on flights. Since the Epipens are in our carry-on luggage, they always get a second look from security. One time security in Hong Kong took the time to fill out special forms, but we’ve never been barred from taking the medicines with us on a flight. This is true for food, as well. We often carry hot food, like rice, in metal containers for our son. While security always flags the containers and has us open them, we’ve never been stopped from carrying them on. Every once in a while we have had to show a doctor’s note that we carry with us explaining our son’s food allergies and why he needs the medicines and food. This tends to smooth things over right away. Now, just because you get the food on the plane, that doesn’t necessarily mean you can get the food into the country to which you’re traveling. Australia and New Zealand, for example, have very strict laws regarding food and agricultural imports in order to protect their environments. One time while traveling to Australia, we indicated on our immigration form that we had food with us. We later got pulled aside and, frankly, scolded for trying to bring the food in. It was all thrown out. We learned our lesson. Even so, when my wife later traveled to Australia for business, she was pulled aside again, even though she didn’t have food with her. We suspect we were put on a watch list. But when traveling around Asia, we haven’t had this kind of scrutiny. For example, we’ve had no problem bringing food into China or Thailand. No matter where you travel, import
controls only seem to apply to fresh and cooked foods. We always bring along some packaged goods from Singapore or the US. These don’t seem to be a problem. Once you are off the plane and in a different country, you likely have to do some grocery shopping and cooking. It’s easy to find retailers in places like Australia and New Zealand, but often the brands are unfamiliar, so you can’t count on finding trusted names. However, the food labeling laws are good, so you should be able to find substitutes. When traveling to other, less western countries, we count on a hired guide to help us find groceries for fresh meat and produce. In those countries, we tend to bring all of our own packaged and dry goods, which again, doesn’t seem to be a problem. For cooking, we book serviced apartments or villas. These tend to be easy to find, either online or through a travel agent, but they will cost more than a regular hotel room. As I mentioned above, we never have restaurants prepare our son’s food, so we don’t have experience working with chefs and wait staff in other countries. We’ve always taken the perspective that the last thing we want on vacation is an allergic reaction, so we play it as safe as possible. Another way we play it safe is by limiting how exotic our destinations are. We’ve heard wonderful stories from friends of the remote and interesting places that the Asia-Pacific region has to offer. But early on in our stay in Singapore, we ruled those places out. Getting food would be hard enough, but even worse, if there was an allergic reaction, we’d be unsure of the speed or quality of the medical care. Don’t get me wrong; we still feel like we’ve had some wonderful adventures that have generated lifelong memories. We just haven’t pushed the envelope. In the end, as with all things regarding food and environmental allergies, it depends on how severe the condition is and how risk averse you are. But even if you’re a little uptight like we are, you should have a safe and enjoyable time in Singapore and Asia, without taking too many chances. Good luck! Bill Poorman is a writer living in Singapore who may someday travel to the remote rice paddies of Yunnan Province or the chilly summit of Mt. Kinabalu, but that day is not today.
21 PASSPORTS, PLEASE!
Singapore American · October 2017
When Push Comes to Shove: Three Traffic Lessons from India By Eric Walter
’m a big believer in the idea that traveling (done right, anyway) gives one the opportunity to learn. I’m not referring so much to hard skills here, like learning another language or learning to navigate foreign laws and regulations (though, indeed, you can learn these too). I mean the less tangible lessons. Life lessons, you might say. I have found that the farther you go physically and culturally from what you are used to, the more there is to be learned. And these lessons don’t always come from where you expect. Traffic in India, for example, taught me a number of things about being both perceptive and, when needed, aggressive.
One of the first things you notice about India – right from the taxi ride out of the airport – is the traffic. To experience urban Indian traffic is to know the meaning of the term free-for-all. By American, and especially by Singaporean, standards, it’s total bedlam. Cars, trucks, motorcycles, scooters and carts cram the highways tighter than sardines in a can, each driver constantly jockeying for position. Cows, water buffalo and stray dogs wander the road and are (mostly) navigated around. Though speed limits are posted, each driver seems cheerfully determined to go as fast as he can at any given time. Traffic laws? Well, if there are any, I don’t know if I saw anyone following them. As chaotic as it is, you’d expect major – or even minor – accidents to be rampant. Remarkably, I saw very few the entire time I was there. The more I studied Indian motorists, the more I came to realize that there seems to be an unspoken, yet universally understood set of rules that everyone obeys. It’s a bit like the way a school of fish or flock of birds can instantly shift direction or speed en masse. The Lesson: Sometimes there is hidden order in chaos
Speaking of Indian traffic, I had been there about a week when I witnessed the following incident on a busy Bangalore street; an entire family – father, mother and multiple children – crammed onto a speeding motor scooter. After hitting a bump, one of the young sons fell off. Rather than cry or clutch his injured body, however, he immediately jumped up and indignantly shouted to his father, who was about to drive off. Finally noticing his missing passenger, the father did stop (just long enough for his son to clamber back aboard) before hitting the accelerator and zooming off down the street. My girlfriend, a native Bangalorean, smiled and nodded her approval. “That one is tough,” she said. “He’ll survive.” The Lesson: An indomitable spirit will take you far
Motorized traffic isn’t the only sort you’ll need to deal with in India. Even after you get out of your car, shoving scrums are by far the norm. While visiting Chamundeshwari Temple in Mysore, I learned firsthand how to navigate this. The packed stone halls of the 1,000 year old hilltop temple are filled with long lines of visitors each day. All of them want to get to the gharba gudi (or main shrine) as quickly as possible and are quite willing to trample anyone and anything that gets in their way. The best way forward, as my girlfriend advised me repeatedly beforehand, is to summon up your fighting spirit, bulldoze ahead and not give an inch. It was excellent advice that got us most of the way through without being separated or overrun. Disaster nearly struck when one man, holding his infant child straight out in front of him like a ram, managed to push past us. Even so, we were able to reconnect and get through the rest of the temple together. Sometimes the best defense is a good offense. The Lesson: When push comes to shove, shove Eric Walter is a freelance writer and editor currently based in Southeast Asia. He writes about technology, innovation, business, cybercrime and entrepreneurship for Gannett Newspapers, the Rochester Business Journal, Dolan Media and King Content. He appreciates a good bowl of noodles and likes Huskies. Photo by Katie Baines
Singapore American · October 2017
World’s first Early Learning Village opens for Stamford American International School, right here in Singapore
rchitecturally designed with young learners in mind, Stamford American’s extraordinary new Early Learning Village has been thoughtfully imagined by award winning architects and purpose-built for young learners from 18 months to 6 years. Inspired by the principles of Reggio Emilia, this state-of-the-art facility specifically caters to the needs of young children and their bright inquiring minds. The Early Learning Village is the first of its kind in Singapore, and maybe even, the world. Despite being larger than the average pre-school, careful attention has gone into making the Village feel like a ‘school within a school’ with four classes grouped in a cluster around a sharing pod. These classes are all part of the same grade/age level and share learning and social activities. The pod includes a teaching kitchen, science station, and reading center for quiet time. September marked the official opening of the Village, but students have already taken to their new home like bees to honey. 100% educational by design, the bright airy classrooms are complemented by six outdoor discovery playgrounds to spark imagination and play. Enrichment spaces include a 20m swimming pool with UV cover, and “The Hive” gymnasium for indoor, air-conditioned sports and play. The Village offers the best environment to deliver learning moments inside and outside of the classroom, with specialist programs as part of the curriculum, including daily language instruction in Mandarin or Spanish, specialist physical education with SMART Steps and Perceptual Motor Program, plus the world-renowned Suzuki Violin Program and optional instrument tuition. Imagine your little one learning violin, cello, piano or drums without having to travel around to different locations? Stamford American offers a distinctly American pathway from 18 months to 18 years, with the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme (IBPYP) commencing at age three. Integrated into the curriculum are new programs of inquiry in science, technology, engineering, arts, math and innovation (STEAMInn). The specialist teaching team monitors individual progress aligned to USA Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Framework from 18 months. And most importantly, Stamford American recognizes that children do better when there’s a strong partnership between educators and parents, which is why parents are able to design the school week around their family’s needs, with a flexible schedule of three, four and five day options. Plus, busy parents can have the option to drop their child as early as 7.15am by signing up for Breakfast Club or extend the school day and pick up until 6pm with Afternoon Tea Time Club. Kids will be fed a healthy meal and enjoy an array of activities under the care of our dedicated Club crew. The Stamford’s friendly Admissions team would love to hear from you. Book your personal tour at www.sais.edu.sg or call +65 6653 7907.
Photos courtesy of Stamford American International School
The Man Behind the Music
Ten minutes with Eric Watson, Composer-in-Residence, Singapore Chinese Orchestra (SCO) What brought you to Singapore? Well, I guess you could say love! It was family; specifically, my wife’s family, they came from Penang and at that time we had been married for quite a few years, living in the UK. Every year we would travel to Penang for about six weeks to visit, and usually Singapore at some point as well. Eventually we decided to move permanently and Singapore was somewhere we both liked very much, so it was the only choice really.
special it has been for them as something they have never been able to experience in their own countries.
What was your first introduction to Chinese music? I had heard Chinese music, opera as well as orchestra, in the UK where I was a freelance musician and also during our travels here. I had often seen the street wayang (puppet theater) and spoken to the performers and musicians. After I came to Singapore I began to hear it more regularly in concert, radio and TV. I was writing music for advertising at the time and occasionally had to incorporate Chinese music into the ads as well as gamelan and Indian music, all of which was easily accessible in Singapore.
What has been your biggest challenge, musically? That is quite a difficult question to answer, as nearly every production seems to bring its own challenges. I’ve written two musicals while I’ve been here and they both presented very different challenges at the time. The first National Day Parade (NDP) I wrote for had many challenges, as even though I had been living in Singapore for several years, there were still aspects of tradition and culture I had to come to grips with. When I wrote my first piece for Chinese ensemble it was a steep learning curve finding out about the instruments, but that in turn generated a lasting interest. Some years later I wrote a piece called Tapestries – Time Dances for a full Chinese orchestra, it was about the Nanyang diaspora and finding out all about that and the associated cultures was a huge but very enjoyable challenge.
You were asked to write the music for the National Day Parade – not once, but twice – how did it feel to play such a big part in the celebrations? I felt very honored, especially as I was not a Singaporean, and I still look at my contribution both times with some pride. It’s actually quite a tremendous experience to be there on the day, the sense of excitement and celebration it generates is quite unique. Certainly, many European visitors have told me how
What have you enjoyed working on the most? Every production is enjoyable to work on but I can think of at least three productions here in Singapore: my first musical, A River in Time, which was performed in the Indoor Stadium; both NDPs; and the first time I worked with the SCO which was for the piece, Tapestries. That last was particularly enjoyable because the orchestra and conductor, Tsung Yeh, are so professional and really wanted to do a good job.
What’s next for you? Well at the moment I’m privileged to be the Composer-inResidence for the SCO so there are quite a few works in the pipeline; in November they will be performing a whole concert of my music and that is very exciting to look forward to. Catch Eric Watson’s World of Chinese Music on November 3 at Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre Auditorium. Find out more at: www.sco.com.sg Photo courtesy of Singapore Chinese Orchestra
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MUSEUMS 1 – 29 October Precious Eggs: Of Art, Beauty and Culture Singapore Philatelic Museum 23-B Coleman Street, Singapore 179807 www.spm.org.sg 1 October – 4 December Rediscovering Treasures: Ink Art from the Xiu Hai Lou Collection Strokes of Life: The Art of Chen Chong Swee National Gallery of Singapore 1 St. Andrew’s Road, Singapore 178957 www.nationalgallery.sg 1 October – 31 December Reviving Myanmar Celadon Ceramics NUS Museum 50 Kent Ridge Crescent, Singapore 119279 www.nus.edu.sg/museum 1 October – 31 March 2018 Witness to War: Remembering 1942 National Museum of Singapore 93 Stamford Road, Singapore 178897 www.nationalmuseum.sg
1 – 15 October FUN HOME Drama Centre Theatre www.sistic.com
31 October Halloween Trick or Treat Woodgrove Neighborhood, near Woodlands St 41 6 – 8pm
3 October Dream Theater in Concert Zepp @ Bigbox Singapore www.sistic.com
4 November Hedger’s Carpet Auction The American Club 10 Claymore Hill Viewing: 5:30 – 7:30pm / Auction: 7:45pm firstname.lastname@example.org
18 October Sebastian Bach Live in Singapore Kallang Theatre www.sistic.com 20 – 21 October Dada Masilo’s Swan Lake Esplanade Theatre www.esplanade.com/dansfestival 24 – 25 October Benjamin Millepied’s L.A. Dance Project Esplanade Theatre www.esplanade.com/dansfestival
7 – 22 October Yellow Ribbon Community Art Exhibition 2017 SAM at 8Q 8 Queen Street, Singapore 188535 www.singaporeartmuseum.sg
27 – 28 October Rocio Molina’s Bosque Ardora Esplanade Theatre www.esplanade.com/dansfestival
28 October ACM After Dark Asian Civilisations Museum 1 Empress Place, Singapore 179555 www.acm.org.sg
3 November Singapore Chinese Orchestra: Eric Watson’s World of Chinese Music Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre Auditorium www.sistic.com
16 November – 11 March 2018 Colours of Impressionism: Masterpieces from The Musée d’Orsay National Gallery of Singapore 1 St. Andrew’s Road, Singapore 178957 www.nationalgallery.sg
19 November Kids’ Philharmonic 5th Anniversary Concert Victoria Concert Hall www.sistic.com
EDUCATION 5 & 6 October Stamford American International School Open House 279 Upper Serangoon Road 9 – 11am www.sais.edu.sg 6 October Singapore American School Kindergarten Chinese Immersion Open Day 40 Woodlands Street 41 9 – 11am www.sas.edu.sg 10 November Singapore American School Kindergarten to Grade 12 Open House 40 Woodlands Street 41 9 – 11am www.sas.edu.sg 17 November Singapore American School Preschool Open House 40 Woodlands Street 41 9 – 11am www.sas.edu.sg