Island living

Singapore may be an island, but under normal circumstances it’s hyper connected to the outside world. As of tonight at 11:59pm we are disconnected. If you can get a flight out, you may leave but to come back you have to be a Singaporean or deemed “essential”. That coupled with the US raising the travel advisory to a level 4 really is a reminder that we are on an island here and that we are committing to riding this virus out here in Singapore. While we still feel good about this decision, it still feels big. There will most likely be no visitors this summer or travel for the foreseeable future. We are stuck on the island of Singapore. While it is a bit unsettling, at least all 5 of us are together. Many families here are split up all over the world. We have many things to be grateful for.

Besides the restriction of travel, there are more social distancing measures being put into place. All stores have markings where to stand to give space to other patrons. The international school community is in a little bit of flux. Some have shut down early for spring break, some are doing remote learning and some (like ours) are following the MOE guidelines and remaining open with increased social distancing. So far throughout this the SG government has provided clear and decisive guidance. We see no reason not to continue to follow their guidelines. So our kids continue to go to school. Their desks were placed a meter apart today. We’ll see if this works. It feels like Singapore is threading a needle right now. We’ve had an uptick of cases. Mostly Singaporeans fleeing home from elsewhere in the world. But there are a few cases each day that don’t have an immediate source. These are worrying… hopefully the amazing contact tracers keep working their magic so we can live a little bit of life (while appropriately distanced of course!).

Onto the pictures! Avery leaned how to say soup dumpling in Mandarin. It’s “Xiao long bao”. So on Sunday we had dim sum for lunch so she could have some. The soup dumplings were demolished immediately, but I did get a picture of the animal steam buns:

Don’t let the steam bun in front of her fool you, she refused to try it. I of course loved it. There was a sweet corn paste in the middle. Yum.

No more AWA walks. They’ve discontinued all activities for social distancing. So I took myself for a walk today. I went with the botanic gardens as I can walk there from home. I feel like I’m becoming a little of an amateur botanist since I’ve walked there so much. It’s always beautiful and I always see something new.

New orchid plantings are always essential!
The zoomba aunties are still at it. Socially distanced of course!
I found a reflexology walk! It felt awesome, I will be coming here often.
Prayer plants. Sending love and prayers to you all!
Ginger plants are everywhere here! Did you know a banana is in the ginger family? There are 1500 different ginger species.
Red button ginger blooming.
Red bananas
Heliconia regalis “regal red”
The heliconia walk
The other plant we have in abundance here are palms. I never knew there were so many varieties or how HUGE they could grow. The palms here make the trees in Florida look tiny.
Finally my favorite tree here, the strangler fig. They are an invasive species that kills its host but makes a beautiful tree in the end.
A strangler fig
My favorite strangler fig.
Look in the middle of the V. It wouldn’t be a Botanic garden trip with out a clouded monitor!

Sorry for the repeat of travels but, like everyone, our world is getting smaller. Wash those haves and stay well!

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