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Old 2010-04-23, 18:39   Link #201
LeoXiao
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Vereinigte Staaten
Age: 23
I just got a scholarship that covers the entire cost of living in Germany and going to a high school there for a year. I'm pretty excited for it, and this also looks good on my resume.
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Old 2010-04-23, 20:32   Link #202
Jan-Poo
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: forever lost inside a logic error
I'm planning to go to New York (Manhattan mainly) for a week as soon as a certain volcano stops being silly

I have list of places to visit, but it would be nice if someone could tell me what I should definitely go see, what I should avoid and any general information that might be useful to have a nice experience.
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Old 2010-04-25, 00:36   Link #203
Ottocycle
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Age: 29
Going to Las Vegas, with a short (3-day) side-trip to San Francisco, for about two weeks pretty soon.

Anything particularly interesting people here would recommend? Also, would there be anything important to take note of (things to avoid, etc).
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Old 2010-06-28, 14:09   Link #204
TinyRedLeaf
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Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Singapore
Age: 40
It's been nearly a month since my trip to Britain. I haven't had much time to organise my notes and pictures since I got back, what with work and the World Cup. Now that England are out of the tournament, it's probably as good a time as any to reflect on the short holiday.

I've written before that the time I spent studying in Britain, from 1996 to 2000, proved to be a turning point that changed much of my outlook on politics, philosophy and life in general. But that's an observation that comes only with the benefit of hindsight. At the time, it was just a great adventure, a chance to be away from home and to be on my own for the first time — basically, the same way every college student feels when he leaves home for higher education.

It's a right of passage into adulthood, a riotous time to indulge in all kinds of activities that are better left forgotten (or not) as one grows older.

Except that, for Singaporeans, such experiences of "growing up" are unfortunately limited only to those who are academically accomplished enough to win scholarships or — let's be blunt — lucky enough to have well-to-do parents. I had wanted to be in the former group, but a rash of adolescent stupidity derailed plans that I had, up to then, taken for granted.

So, the knowledge that I was going abroad on my father's money always weighed heavily on my conscience at the time, even though he, as the owner of a small textiles business, could well afford it. Having just come out of an awkward time in my relationship with my father in the early 1990s, shame was growing inwardly as I gradually realised how poorly I had understood him.

I well remember my feelings in the autumn of 1996, as I stepped out of the hubbub of Heathrow Terminal 3 and into a National Express coach bound for Coventry; the scenes of an unfamiliar country flashing past the coach window felt exciting yet surreal, like images from a story happening to someone else.

Most of all, the space — there was so much of it. People talk about Britain being among the most densely populated countries in Western Europe. Sorry, you haven't seen densely populated until you've seen city-states like Singapore or Hong Kong.

Right away, there was within me a sense of liberation, of opportunity. Arriving as a stranger to a strange land, embarking on a new level of education, there was a sense of tabula rasa — I was starting on a clean slate and I wanted dearly to make the best of it.

I relate these experiences because I want to share what Britain, as a country and a memory, means to me. It was a familiar second home, a place where people often mistook me for a local. The town I stayed in for a year, Royal Leamington Spa, became the closest thing I had to a "hometown" in a foreign land, a cosy place easily covered within a 30-minute walk, but with rough edges I took care to stay away from.

I enjoyed the late-night pub crawls; the wild parties at the Students' Union and the dorms; shopping for groceries at Tescos; drinking after last orders at the "local"; the grass (both the kind that grows on the ground and the kind that you, ahem, inhale); the weekend rambling in the Lake District; the winter visit to a blustering beach in Weymouth; the regular visits to bustling (and grimy) London in my first year; the national pastime of bashing the United States; and so on.

At the same time, Britain was also a place that constantly reminded me that I did not fit in — I was a fish out of water, very, very unaware of the social fabric that shaped the country's people, like being unable to share the British love for evening soap operas; the often wanton disregard for authority, which usually translated into scathing mockery for anyone in charge; the unpleasant brushes with drunk yobs who yelled, "Chink go home!", or the gits who thought it funny to hurl rotten cabbage across my windscreen while I was driving, nervously, through central Coventry.

There are Singaporeans who "flee" their home country at the first opportunity; my student experiences in Britain, ironically, strengthened my resolve to stay Singaporean, no matter what. And yet, despite it all, I still came to admire my host country for it was, warts and all. Perhaps, in a perverse way, I enjoyed how it made me feel so proud to be different.

So, as I waited for my connecting flight to London in Doha late last month, I found myself strangely bemused by the nonchalance with which I was contemplating my first visit to Britain in 10 years.

Because, you see, it didn't feel like a holiday at all; it felt, instead, like a long-awaited homecoming.

=========

Royal Leamington Spa, my one-year home-away-from-home.





It's very near Warwick, home to the best-preserved castle in Britain.



Warwickshire is home also to Stratford-upon-Avon, Shakespeare's birthplace.



A glorious summer's day at Mary Arden's Farm.



It's actually a "real" farm with working animals.



The whole county is fairly rural, such as Shipston-on-Stour, preparing for a wool festival.



I was passing through, headed to Chipping Camden, the start point of the Cotswold Way.





Much as I love the country, I am, in truth, a city slicker, more at home with London's crowds.



Just outside Whitehall, near the Cenotaph, hippies make camp.



I was heading across the Thames, to the Design Museum on South Bank.



Cool, cutting-edge stuff on display, especially the BMW Gina, a shaped-fabric car.



South of London lies Eastbourne, a silvering town by the sea.



I was there to see the chalk downs and white cliffs of Beachy Head.



I reckon that since I'd paid tribute at Shakespeare's grave...



I might as well visit the New Globe, Shakespeare's theatre, rebuilt by American initiative. The irony...


Last edited by TinyRedLeaf; 2010-06-28 at 14:20.
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Old 2010-06-28, 14:26   Link #205
bombyethan1000
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Nice pics of England, I haven't been there for ages
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Old 2010-06-28, 17:48   Link #206
Yu Ominae
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
There are Singaporeans who "flee" their home country at the first opportunity; my student experiences in Britain, ironically, strengthened my resolve to stay Singaporean, no matter what. And yet, despite it all, I still came to admire my host country for it was, warts and all. Perhaps, in a perverse way, I enjoyed how it made me feel so proud to be different.
Funny though; I remember this Singaporean pianist who "fled" Singapore to settle in Britain as he didn't believe in the NS system.

Name slips my mind for the moment.
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Old 2010-06-29, 16:13   Link #207
TinyRedLeaf
. . .
 
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Singapore
Age: 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yu Ominae View Post
Funny though; I remember this Singaporean pianist who "fled" Singapore to settle in Britain as he didn't believe in the NS system.

Name slips my mind for the moment.
You're thinking of Melyvn Tan, and I well remember the minor controversy his case provoked back in 2006. Personally? I have no sympathy for the man. He knowingly committed an offence — draft evasion — because he was privileged enough to get an education outside the country, a privilege that most Singaporean boys don't enjoy. Why should he be let off lightly simply because he's now a successful pianist? Justice was not served.

In any case, I think you've misunderstood what I wrote. I was not suggesting that all Singaporeans return home after studying or working abroad. In fact, a good number of them don't. And, despite my opinions on Melyvn Tan, I'm not interested in passing blanket judgment on such people. Circumstances vary, and every decision to stay or return has to be judged on its own merits. It just happens that, in Melyvn's case, I don't find the facts to be in his favour, hence my disdain.

It's curious how you made that connection with Melyvn though, because classical music was the main reason why I passed by London's Cenotaph during this trip. The structure is Britain's memorial to its casualties of war, and a ceremony is held there every year on Remembrance Sunday to commemorate the country's heroic dead.

Just over a month ago, Singapore's highly respected former political leader, Dr Goh Keng Swee, passed away. At a Singapore Symphony Orchestra performance one week after his death, Edward Elgar's Nimrod from the Enigma Variations was played as tribute to the orchestra's departed patron. I was there that afternoon, and the sweeping crescendos moved me to tears.

It's the same piece of music that the British armed forces play every Remembrance Sunday at the Cenotaph. Once you hear the music, you'll immediately understand why it's probably one of the best possible tributes you can dedicate to great men.

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Old 2010-06-29, 19:18   Link #208
SaintessHeart
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Join Date: Nov 2007
Age: 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yu Ominae View Post
Funny though; I remember this Singaporean pianist who "fled" Singapore to settle in Britain as he didn't believe in the NS system.

Name slips my mind for the moment.
It is okay if he doesn't believe in it (neither do I), however I find him using that privilege as a damn excuse to commit a crime he knows rather asinine. 2 years isn't that long.....in my father's day, they have to serve for three, and in my grandad's days he had to serve for 5 (WWII) *sarcastic*.

However as TRL said, studying abroad is not just a simple privilege, it is an esteemed privilege (and of all subjects, music! Dammitdammitdammitassassass). There is this guy I know who wanted to study visual arts at Rhode Island, but had to pass the opportunity due to the 2008 financial meltdown that killed his parents' business.

Studying abroad is intriguing. It allows you to take a look at a culture where it is entirely different and sometimes similar from yours, and the learning experience is a whole lot more than what books about overseas, or even Google, can teach you.

Travelling is a different issue. I would certainly like to visit places like Afghanistan or Pakistan. I believe that the news agencies are hiding something from the readers.....the place can't be that entirely bad right?
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Old 2010-06-30, 09:45   Link #209
Mihara Yuki
I...I don't know...
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Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: In front of my Golden Laptop
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Weeeell,actually I wanted to visit Japan (yeah..i know it belong to another thread) and also I would like to to France or Italy someday.But,my pocket won't allow me and also that the fact that Im still student T_T

But,at least I want to introduce you to my country..It was Malaysia
Speaking of it,it was a really suitable if you want to tour on budget.
We have a lot of asian cuisine and also that you dont need to go to the other asian if you want to taste a lot of asian cuisine at the same time.One step to the city and everything is there.
We also actually love...food (to be honest) and the fact that there's a lot of restaurant,just said it,Italian,Japanese,Chinese,Indian,Persian,etc..et c Malaysia have three major race,Malay,Chinese,Indian,so it was really easy.
There is no problem of to people there because we can speak English well (except me..ngahaha) and there's a lot of signboard written in English,so perfectly no problem.
But,if you really going to visit there,i just want to warn for one thing.And i even going to say it in RED
NEVER USE PUBLIC TRANSPORT
IT WAS REALLY SUCK

Malaysian was really well-known for their politeness..but...we can change behaviour in road.. (if you are Malaysian,you know what I mean)
But,it still..oh well..better....

So for the picture..
Spoiler for map:

[IMG]
Spoiler for town:
[/IMG]
[IMG]
Spoiler for food:
[/IMG]
[IMG]
Spoiler for People:
[/IMG]
[IMG]
Spoiler for interest place:
[/IMG]

Well, my post might look like school project..but,do i care?
Anyway,here's the link if you interested
www.tourism.gov.my/
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Old 2010-06-30, 10:32   Link #210
Yu Ominae
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Join Date: Dec 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
In any case, I think you've misunderstood what I wrote. I was not suggesting that all Singaporeans return home after studying or working abroad. In fact, a good number of them don't. And, despite my opinions on Melyvn Tan, I'm not interested in passing blanket judgment on such people. Circumstances vary, and every decision to stay or return has to be judged on its own merits. It just happens that, in Melyvn's case, I don't find the facts to be in his favour, hence my disdain.
Not that I misunderstand or anything. Just that his name came to my head.
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Old 2010-06-30, 10:38   Link #211
TinyRedLeaf
. . .
 
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Singapore
Age: 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mihara Yuki View Post
But,at least I want to introduce you to my country..It was Malaysia
Speaking of it,it was a really suitable if you want to tour on budget.
We have a lot of asian cuisine and also that you dont need to go to the other asian if you want to taste a lot of asian cuisine at the same time.One step to the city and everything is there.
Is Bangsar still a hip place to be? It's been a very long while since I last visited Kuala Lumpur. I don't normally go up that far, since most of my Malaysian relatives live in Malacca.

Malacca is much nicer than KL, in my opinion. More laid back, more historical and yet small enough to cover in a couple of days. With Makotah and the other new shopping centres, there's more to do too besides hanging out in Jonker Street. Most of all, I love bola bola chicken rice.

Penang's pretty OK too, but it's a very long drive from Singapore. The better beaches and resorts are on the east coast though, like those on Pulau Tioman and Pulau Redang. But resorts have never really been my kind of holiday — I'd be bored stiff.

I'd avoid Johor Baru like the plague, though. It's a really rough place to be, especially for Singaporeans.
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Old 2010-06-30, 11:08   Link #212
SaintessHeart
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Join Date: Nov 2007
Age: 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
I'd avoid Johor Baru like the plague, though. It's a really rough place to be, especially for Singaporeans.
That place is notorious amongst the Singaporeans to be a "robber's heaven". Not sure about the demographic of crime right now over there, I doubt it would change as long as loaded Singaporeans go there to shop.

If it is Malacca, I would visit the rural areas, namely the farms and plantations. Despite all the mud and dirt, there is a sense of peace that you can never find in the entire Singapore.

And of course, you can drive a motorised fishing boat without a PPCDL in peace, without the Coast Guard coming up next to you.
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When three puppygirls named after pastries are on top of each other, it is called Eclair a'la menthe et Biscotti aux fraises avec beaucoup de Ricotta sur le dessus.
Most of all, you have to be disciplined and you have to save, even if you hate our current financial system. Because if you don't save, then you're guaranteed to end up with nothing.
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Old 2010-07-01, 05:40   Link #213
Mihara Yuki
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Join Date: Oct 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
Is Bangsar still a hip place to be? It's been a very long while since I last visited Kuala Lumpur. I don't normally go up that far, since most of my Malaysian relatives live in Malacca.
Im not sure about that >_< Malacca is a nice place too.I once went there to visit historical places

Quote:
Malacca is much nicer than KL, in my opinion. More laid back, more historical and yet small enough to cover in a couple of days. With Makotah and the other new shopping centres, there's more to do too besides hanging out in Jonker Street. Most of all, I love bola bola chicken rice.
Actually,my favourite places in Malaysia is Pulau Langkawi.It was really convenient there and no toll fares too

Quote:
I'd avoid Johor Baru like the plague, though. It's a really rough place to be, especially for Singaporeans.
I wonder why....

Quote:
Originally Posted by SaintessHeart View Post
If it is Malacca, I would visit the rural areas, namely the farms and plantations. Despite all the mud and dirt, there is a sense of peace that you can never find in the entire Singapore.
Im agree with you Still looking forward to visit there someday...

Speaking of it,here's the picture of Bangsar now.

Spoiler for Umm...:


I live in Selangor and not often going out because Im going to face exam this year.It didn't even have a places of interest.The only thing that make me interested now here is that they going to make a shopping complex 1 km from my house.
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Old 2010-07-06, 19:03   Link #214
Toleen
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Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Home
i'm from egypt any one wellcomed here
i want to visit england and italy
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Old 2011-01-22, 02:50   Link #215
Jjo
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Boston, MA
Age: 24
Iduno if this is the right thread to ask :P

But I am having trouble deciding what kind of dress to wear (aswell as what clothing to pack) for a trip to London this August?

Is it usually hot there during August or more cool out? does it rain alot during August?
I really need to know the weather so I don't come overdress, or under-dressed and freeze :P
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Old 2011-01-22, 03:07   Link #216
Khu
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: NSW, Australia
Age: 20
Take cold gear. Seriously. A coat, at least. London is overcast and cold almost all year round.

25 is a HOT DAY IN LONDON. Seriously.

(although I'm Australian, so my view may be slightly skewed XD)
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Old 2011-01-23, 20:32   Link #217
Simon
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: New Zealand
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Originally Posted by Jjo View Post
Is it usually hot there during August or more cool out? does it rain alot during August?
I really need to know the weather so I don't come overdress, or under-dressed and freeze :P
The locals can give better advice, but one thing I found as a visitor was that the Underground felt disgustingly hot even in November. I don't know what US subways are like, but compared to say the Seoul subway London is an uncomfortable surprise.

UK weather isn't always miserable, but it is very changeable. If in doubt, wear plenty of thin layers so you can adjust as you go

Also, probably not of interest but this happened to pop up on the Beeb today.
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Old 2011-01-23, 20:54   Link #218
Jjo
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Boston, MA
Age: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Khu View Post
Take cold gear. Seriously. A coat, at least. London is overcast and cold almost all year round.

25 is a HOT DAY IN LONDON. Seriously.

(although I'm Australian, so my view may be slightly skewed XD)
Really?? I'm glad I didn't buy a dress already since I was looking at summer dresses

Though here in Boston many people break out the khaki shorts and flip flops in 30 degree weather....
And you see atleast one guy in shorts in below 0 weather here, lmao.

Thanks for the tip =D
I'll dress a bit warmer ^^;


Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
The locals can give better advice, but one thing I found as a visitor was that the Underground felt disgustingly hot even in November. I don't know what US subways are like, but compared to say the Seoul subway London is an uncomfortable surprise.

UK weather isn't always miserable, but it is very changeable. If in doubt, wear plenty of thin layers so you can adjust as you go

Also, probably not of interest but this happened to pop up on the Beeb today.

I will be somewhere call "last drop village" for the wedding which I think it outside the city so I don't know if I'd be able to get on any trains >_< The US subways are actually not hot at all lol I take the subway *alot* and most are rather cold actually, they do turn the heat on in the train during winter but standing underground waiting you are on your own then.
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Old 2011-01-26, 05:35   Link #219
theflyingturkey
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Where turkeys can actually fly
Age: 21
Does visited count? If so I've been to China and China and China...
Chances are I'll be heading over to Melbourne this year though since my brother is going to be spending his first year there. It'll be nice if someone gave me a heads up on places to visit.

Quote:
Quote:
Malacca is much nicer than KL, in my opinion. More laid back, more historical and yet small enough to cover in a couple of days. With Makotah and the other new shopping centres, there's more to do too besides hanging out in Jonker Street. Most of all, I love bola bola chicken rice.
Yeah, Malacca is awesome. Bonus since my grandmother used to live right outside Jonker Street. Best times were during Chinese New Year, since we could get a front row seat for all the performances. I loved the fried oyster there .

Last edited by theflyingturkey; 2011-02-05 at 23:15.
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Old 2011-03-20, 22:54   Link #220
Mystique
Honyaku no Hime
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Join Date: May 2008
Location: In the eastern capital of the islands of the rising suns...
Planning a short trip to Taiwan, 2 weeks post quake.
(Seems pointless doesn't it when I've possibly lived through the worst, huh)

Nonetheless, it's a first time, heard relatively safe for a lone female and look foward to non shaking planet, warmer temps, good food and beaches.

So any 'top 5' things I must do, although since I am very tired and on my own without being able to speak a single damn thing of Chinese, I may spend 80% of my time in Taipei.

Top 5 food, or sights, or places to visit would be nice
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