a bit of hope

sometimes, we need to be reminded that we’re all the same. we all want to love, be loved, have friends, lead happy lives and eat good food – and I’d like to say hello to you and your families (and you ought to say hello back, really). it’s been a trying week on the world – and for those of us lucky enough to be mere spectators, it’s a good time to give thanks and be appreciative. for all of you out there – please know all our thoughts are with you.

these photos were taken at the interactive art installation, pop-up noise, outside raffles city nearly a month ago – a purely coincidental happenstance that I was in the area, though now seemingly fortuitous. I know it’s late-breaking long-after-its-fin news – but these guys seem to do regular events, so perhaps you might like to have a look if you’re in singapore.

coconut candy, mekong delta

while at the mekong lodge, we got a quick look at how coconut candy was made – it’s a semi-hard sort of toffee with a deep caramelly flavour, full of the notes of toasted coconut. essentially, caramel gets cooked in a large pot, thrown on the table to cool, before it’s divided into mounds and pushed out into a mould. these moulds are wooden, with straight trenches so the candy gets shaped into strips, before they’re cut into smaller squares.

we bought a couple bags that had bits of coconut in them, and these are some tasty things – sort of like werther’s originals done up asian-style. tasty!

more on the mekong lodge:

bee farm

singapore night festival, take 2

so as promised, here are the photos from my second weekend at the night festival. this one was a lot more enjoyable as we got to catch a few more special performances. we arrived first at armenian street just before the first performance (that we wanted to catch) started, and were greeted by an immensely noisy rock band. really not the sort of music I appreciate, and it was very difficult to even understand what they were saying. the thing about rock bands is that they always think they have something to say, but really if they don’t enunciate properly or say it in a clearly audible tone, then it definitely isn’t going to work out.

the first show we caught was la argentina featuring the analog girl, and it was essentially a very healthy-looking girl in a floaty chiffon dress being swung around on a rotating crane. this was really rather awesome and quite honestly one of the only abstract art performances I think I have ever appreciated. it started with thumping music – that we later found out came from a very enthusiastic band following from behind, so kudos to them – and initially struck the performance off as some sort of inane dance performed on an elevated stage. it quickly got going though, with the crane traveling down the entire (blocked-off) armenian street, and simultaneously rotating through the efforts of people balancing and holding on to the other side of the crane closer to the ground. and when I said rotated, I mean the crane was swinging around in a manic circle at incredible speed and the lady was mimicking the movements of running in air. the music was good, she knew how to get people excited, and it was a good start to the festival this second weekend.

we later swung by the main green near the singapore management university to watch a group of people jumping about on a transparent sheet of plastic loaded with water and hoisted on some sort of stage equipment. very scary when they started bouncing and jumping and slamming themselves in the water and on the plastic (which seemed too thin to hold that sort of impact), but it was rather cool to see them sloshing about on the surface. this performance was called mylar, and was very sort of surreal. quite cool though, and I think that was what they were going for.

it was a huge crush that day so while I have a few hundred photos from being a little too enthusiastic with my continuous-shot function, I’m only posting these few. when I eventually figure out how to create a gif using photoshop I’ll show you a little of the performances. I do notice a trend – that the performances picked for the festival are rough – in that they are seemingly spontaneously, and quite shocking-surreal. not necessarily a bad thing, since not much of the population gets in on the arty stuff and this knocks things out of the mainstream.

this second weekend was a much better experience than the first, and I have to say it gives hope for the next year’s.