Stranded in Singapore

I am in Singapore on a so called ‘visa run’ from Indonesia.

That is, my 30 days were up and I had to leave the country, only to return for another 30 days.

I had booked a cheap flight to Singapore quite a while back. But by the time I booked my return the prices had tripled. Left with the risk of spending Christmas here, alone in a big city, I quickly decided I just had to pay the price.

But it left me with quite excessive time in this big, artificial bubble of a city.


I have been here before.

I have watched the fireworks of the harbour at the 57th floor of Marina Bay Sands Hotel, had Singapore Sling’s at Raffles, marveled at the city skyline from 300 metres at the Altitude Bar. I have eaten simple dim sums in Chinatown’s food markets and fancy sea food in Boat Quay. I have walked on Garden by the Bay’s futuristic boardwalks and spent hours in Arab Street’s eclectic vintage shops. I have great memories from the people I shared the experience with.

So honestly, I didn’t need a whole week in this city.

Especially not when prices are level to Scandinavia and I have zero income. It’s clear to see:

I’ve spent too much.

I’ve accomplished too little.

And I don’t know why, but this morning it all just hit me. I’ve tried to justify my time here by studying my IIN Health Coaching program, making attempts for jogs and extended walks, talking to friends, writing and planning for the future at the best of days.

But this morning, I felt empty, I felt fake.

I was sad for no particular reason and I couldn’t decide what to do to get back on track.

The only thing I knew that could pick me up is this awesome salad bar downtown (like next level salad bar with choices of kale, quinoa, dried blueberries, avocado, pomelo and other things that really rocks my boat)

I got there, an hour later after getting lost in different underground exits and shopping malls, only to find out that the place was closed.

But worse yet, I realized I no longer had my wallet.

I had absolutely no money or credit card or public transport card.

I don’t know if someone had grabbed for my wallet from my somewhat open handbag, or if it had fallen out, but it left me with no choice but to walk the full hour back to Little India, in the hot and humid midday, through downtown Singapore, without any possibility to buy a banana or a bottle of water.

Of course, it wasn’t a crisis. I quickly blocked the card and will have a new one sent to Bali in a couple of weeks. I had also been smart enough to store my other one in a safe along with my passport at the hostel. I was fine.

But the emotions that had been creeping under my skin for a while quickly appeared at surface.

And I had no choice but to let it out.

All the frustration and insecurity of not knowing where I am going.

All the self doubt and fear of being inadequate in this pursuit for fulfillment.

All the words, spilling on paper, in my journal, in a conversation with my ex boyfriend, in a coaching session with a class mate, with my mom, even with the waiter at this restaurant where I now find myself.

I got a free cup of coffee.

And the best lemon curd, passionfruit ice-cream and ginger biscuit cake ever.

It left me feeling so ridiculously rich and spoilt and just so goddamn lucky.

My struggles are absolutely nothing and if anything,

This day put that into perspective.