Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Where am I?

Nearly every day, I find myself asking myself a question. Well, I find myself asking lots of questions. For instance, one of last week's questions was "Did you really think that the glass closet door wouldn't break when you threw a golf ball at it??"

But that's a different story.

I see or hear something almost daily that makes me wonder where in the world I am.

Recently, it was the song "Cotton Fields" playing in the grocery store. Sure, we hear all if the recent popular songs, but that one is sort of our of left field (and the sixties). When I was in Indonesia 18 years ago, a Filipino cover band was singing it in a restaurant, and it took me a moment to figure it out. They didn't speak English, so the were mostly just approximating the lyrics. Once they noticed me singing along, they tried to pass me a microphone. Didn't happen. Definitely a "where am I?" Moment - both times with a very random song.

Then, there's the variety of cultures here in Singapore that make me stop and think about where in the world I am.  For instance, I see this place when I take the bus to the grocery store:

Madeleine's Original Portuguese Egg Tarts.  Right under the Buddhist Center. 

Now, given the crazy mix of nationalities here, it's not especially odd to see something Portuguese or food from anywhere else for that matter.  We have an American barbecue restaurant (that tries too hard and isn't very good), Brazilian steakhouses, Ethiopian restaurants, and everything in between.  In fact, we celebrated Mexican Independence Day by eating some decent Mexican food; if I closed my eyes, I could imagine I was at the Orizaba Holiday Inn again (and that's not a bad thing.  At all!). 

Most days, we have nearly all of the comforts of home, and it's easy to forget where we are.  And then, there are times when our shopping list has mundane items that send us on a scavenger hunt all over the island.  This week, it was Ivory soap and cumin. The Ivory soap was found in the third grocery store we looked in, but the search is still on for cumin.  I'm sure it's here; I just haven't been in the right place yet....
It's always an adventure, and it's never dull.  At least we have Madeleine's egg tarts to keep us going.

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