The airports in the Philippines vary from the decrepit to the slightly modern. I already enjoy our Manila and Davao airports because at least it isn't that hot, but seeing the Singapore airport was truly an experience in itself for me.
As we left the plane and into the tube, I was surprised to hear a greeting of “Magandang Hapon po.” It was our local greeting of good afternoon. I suddenly had second thoughts that we might still be in the country. Only when we entered the airport proper that I know we were in another country.
People of all colors were all over the place. Without meaning to be politically incorrect, there were whites, blacks, yellows, reds, browns in the airport. Businessmen in their spiffy suits and attache cases. Families and tourists with their casual wear and cameras. It was all so interesting. Finally, I was a foreigner myself. I had such a feeling of elation. You may find it silly, but it was a new experience. I have been so used to the homogeneity of the Philippines, that being in a multi-racial set-up was truly exciting.
One of my biggest fun was riding the walkalator. Finally, I get to ride on one and not just see it in the movies anymore! So my companions and I stepped on it. We were giggling the whole time, enjoying the novelty of the thing. I took my camera and started snapping away at the images of the airport. I completely forgot that I was moving, that I almost tripped flat on my face as the walkalator reached the end. Thank God for my good sense of balance or I might have started the vacation injured. Tee-hee!
The airport was simply marvelous! It had it’s own sort of mall that you could do your own shopping there already. Of course, it would be cheaper to get it outside. But for people who might be in a rush or have a limited time in Singapore, they can do last minute shopping in the airport. And for sure, it seems they have something that people will need. From perfumes to food to clothes, stalls and boutiques of all sorts can be found there.
What I was most happy about was the information area. There were pamphlets and maps about anything and everything Singapore. It was all for free too. Which is good. So I got most of the stuff that I could understand and possibly do during the duration of our stay. Maps of the train lines. Schedules of activities in famous tourists spots. Places to go. Wonderful! It made our life a little easier.
We enjoyed looking around the airport so much that by the time we were done having our passports stamped, there were only six luggages left from our plane, three of those ours. They were already left by the conveyor belt. We were just laughing at our ignorance and could hardly care if we are looking like silly first-time tourists because that was what exactly what we were. Tee-hee!
It was also quite organized as well. For those without baggage, passengers can choose to take the MRT which is a whole lot cheaper than taking a cab. But since we had a lot of stuff, we opted to take the cab instead. This is where we have a first-hand experience of the disciplined Singapore. People had to queue for the taxi to make sure that it was first come, first served. Very good!
As we waited to a cab, I was just feeling so good. I was so glad I chose Singapore for my first trip out of my country. :)