We've been asked this one too many times in our lives that we’re starting to question if anyone out there studied geography. Simply put, no we’re not part of China. Never have been. We recommend investing in an atlas.
Well, we used to be, but not anymore. Here's a quick history lesson – Singapore merged with Malaysia (then known as Malaya) in September 1963 before the bittersweet separation in 1965, where we officially became independent.
Sigh, poke fun at this all you want but it’s really one of those questions we’re tired of being asked. Let’s make it clear: there's a ban on importing chewing gum into Singapore but it’s not illegal to chew gum here. Plus, we’d rather avoid having jaw cramps anyway and prefer mints.
No, we're a divine city. Have you seen our stunning city skyline? *Whistles*
Uh, yes, we do. English’s the most common language used at home and in schools. Most Singaporeans are multilingual or bilingual at least.
Ah, always the follow-up to the previous question. And surprise, it’s not English. Our national language is Malay and we have four official languages spoken here: English, Malay, Tamil and Mandarin.
Living in one of the most expensive countries really takes a toll on our bank account. But we’re known (and proud) for being cheapskates so that’s how we’ve managed to thrive in this costly city. All Singaporeans live by this mantra: cheap must buy, free must take.
It’s summer here all year-round with an average temperature of 27°C, but we do have our cooler days – especially during the monsoon period. Recently it’s dipped to 21°C and Singaporeans were practically calling it winter and a "miracle". Frankly, we call it global warming.
Wah, you think Singlish very easy is it? You don’t anyhow lah and suka suka. It’s sibei chim okay! (Translation: probably not, but we appreciate the effort!)
You know the saying, don’t let a bunch of rotten apples spoil the whole barrel? Well, here’s where it fits. We think we’re generally nice and kind people (albeit sarcastic), but come on, you’re always going to encounter a couple of rude folks anywhere you go.
Photo: Choo Yut Shing