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    Last glimpse of the sunset?

    No, this picture was taken at 7:55PM and facing South.

    This is what it looks like when they flare off at Pulau Bokum Refinery. I have no idea what was the reason for flaring off such large amounts of gas, but it does happen from time to time.

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      Singapore Weather

      DON'T BELIVE THE WEATHER FORECAST ON BBC NEWS, at least not when it comes to Singapore.
      They report rain EVERY day, which is not the case and here is PROF:

      A "perfect" day. Not a cloud in the sky all day??

      Well, actually that is NOT a perfect day in Singapore, since it gets very hot on such days as today. Anywhere between 34 - 35C, but the relative humidity stays low, so it is bearable.

      Now, THIS is a near perfect day in Singapore:

      Cloudy, but relatively dry and a temperature around 30C. (28-32C)
      Last edited by ombugge; April 19th, 2011, 11:46.

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        A bit heavier clouds are also welcome, but are usually accompanied with higher humidity:


        Which of cause sometime turn into afternoon shower:

        In fact, afternoon showers are common and a relief from hot humid days.

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          We also have days with high cumulus and some blue sky:


          Which may turn into Thunder Storms with heavy downpours:

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            At times we get "Sumatras", or line squalls:

            So called because they originate over Sumatra.

            They can pack a lot of wind for a short time:

            Even up close to hurricane force as the front passes over, but it lasts only for a very short time (Minutes, if not seconds) and MAY topple some trees where they hit.

            The downpours that is associated with Sumatras can be very intense and cause flash flooding in a few isolated area with insufficient drainage.

            The Monsoon rains that hits as the Monsoon Front (ITCZ) passes over on its way North or South can last for a day or more, but does not disrupt traffic or cause any serious flooding in Singapore. This is different in parts of Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia, where Monsoon rains cause flooding every year.

            Right now we are between Monsoons, with the Monsoon front being north of us and the SW Monsoon not yet established. This is the Sumatra season, however.

            So, if you plan to visit Singapore, don't get discouraged by the forecasts on BBC World News or other channels that ALWAYS show rain.

            It is true in a sense, it rains most days, but that is usually for less than half an hour at a time and is a relief on a hot and sticky day.

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              Singapore General Election

              Great excitement is in the air in Singapore. General Election has been called for 7th May, 2011 and today was Nomination Day. For the first time in MANY year the opposition has fielded Candidates in 82 of the 87 Constituencies, thus contesting 95% of the seats.

              The Election System is basically adopted from the British (not surprisingly) with single seat Constituencies and "first at the post". Slightly modified into something called "Group Representation Constituencies" (GRCs) to ensure that minority race candidates stand a change of being elected.

              There are 5 Opposition Parties contesting in all but ONE GRC, which is Tg. Pager GRC, with MM Lee Kuan Yew at the head, so they are elected uncontested by "Walk-over".
              Actually, one opposition party made an effort to contest there too, but they only managed to put together a team a few hours before the deadline and filed their nomination papers 35 sec. too late (Whether deliberately or not can be debated) and was disqualified. Rules are rules and everybody know the rules.

              This time around the opposition parties has managed to co-ordinate their effort better, since there is only one "three cornered" fight. No independent candidates are muddling the field either.

              In previous elections the ruling party, People's Action Party (PAP) has won nearly every contested seat and over 60% of the popular vote, but this time around it is likely to be a much more hotly contested fight.

              So now we will have frantic hustling for a few days, with candidates knocking on the door, stuffing the mailbox and calling on the phone every day for the nearest 9 days. Luckily, we don't have a continuous election cycle, like the US.

              Another good thing is that the Singaporeans don't accept negative campaigning and mudslinging and we don't have race/religion based political parties. All parties have supporters from all races and religions present in Singapore.

              It will actually be interesting to see how many constituencies will go to the opposition, since they are fielding some pretty impressive candidates for a change. In some earlier elections they deliberately fielded candidates in less than half the constituencies to ensure the voters that it was "safe" to vote for them, without risking that they would win enough seats to become the next Government. That is obviously NOT the case this time around.

              As a Permanent Resident, not a Citizen I'm not allowed to vote, obviously, nor to participate in hustling for any party or candidates, but I can still have my preference.

              Watch here on 8th May for an Election Report.
              Last edited by ombugge; April 27th, 2011, 10:36.

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                Election 2011

                Then it is all done and dusted. A more engaging and contested election than "normal".
                As expected the ruling party (PAP) won the most seats and retain the Government. (That was actually never really in doubt) But their margin of popular votes dropped by 6.5% to abt. 60%, which may be called a "landslide" in most countries.

                That the 6 opposition parties won 40% of the votes doesn't mean that they get 40% of the seats in parliament. This is because of the election system that was inherited from the British (and now contested in Britain) where it is "first at the post". In this case that means 50% of the votes in each constituency, since the opposition had agreed not to contest in the same ward. In case of "three cornered fights", (like it normally is in Britain) it is theoretically possible to win ALL seats in Parliament with 33.34% of the popular votes.

                This year the opposition won 6 seats in Parliament as opposed to only 2 in the last election. (1 single seat ward and one "GRC" with 5 seats) All these seats were won by the Worker's Party, while the other opposition parties lost all their contests.

                It will now be 4-5 years before the next election, but the result this year has given the PAP Government a bit of a warning that not every Singaporean is happy with the way things are done and where Singapore is heading, whether based on facts or "feeling".

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                  Singapore is indeed in a very special situation, and I found it very interesting to read your commentary ombugge.
                  With best regards from Jan-Olav Storli

                  Administrator and Owner of CaptainsVoyage.
                  Main page: http://www.captainsvoyage.com

                  Surround yourself with positive, ethical people who are committed to excellence.

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                    Re: This is Singapore

                    Some of you probably remember these pictures of Asia Insurance Building from the old days. As seen from Collyer Quay, near Clifford Pier when built in 1956:

                    Denmark House is under construction next to it.

                    And in the late 1960s:

                    When it was THE skyline of Singapore, as seen from the Eastern Anchorage.

                    A few days ago I took a picture of Asia Insurance Building as it stands today:

                    This is as seen from Raffles Place, 23. May. 2011. You should be able to make out the AIB easily enough. It is now The Ascott Residencies.

                    I may have shown very similar pictures earlier, but there will be differences in the "now" pictures, even if only a couple of years apart.
                    Last edited by ombugge; May 28th, 2011, 11:40.

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                      Re: This is Singapore

                      WAOW... ombugge: that is extremely fascinating!

                      It's really hard to imagine the transformation there: look at what it used to be and what it is. Almost unreal.
                      With best regards from Jan-Olav Storli

                      Administrator and Owner of CaptainsVoyage.
                      Main page: http://www.captainsvoyage.com

                      Surround yourself with positive, ethical people who are committed to excellence.

                      Comment


                        Re: This is Singapore

                        Extremely cool...I love before and afters. I also love seeing old photos of what a place looked like 25, 50, 100 years ago.

                        And I get to see it IN PERSON in FEBRUARY!!!!!!! Hooray!

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                          Re: This is Singapore

                          Originally posted by ehp View Post
                          Extremely cool...I love before and afters. I also love seeing old photos of what a place looked like 25, 50, 100 years ago.
                          And I get to see it IN PERSON in FEBRUARY!!!!!!! Hooray!
                          You are welcome to Singapore in person in February. Hope we can meet up.

                          We had unseasonably cool day here yesterday:

                          Taken at 1230 hrs. when we would expect to see 33-35 degr. C. With a strong breeze blowing as well it got downright nippy.

                          This is normally the hottest and driest part of the year, but yesterday it rained continuously from early morning to well into the afternoon.
                          Back to normal today though.

                          Comment


                            Re: This is Singapore

                            I posted this picture earlier: (Post #597 )

                            Then other day I took some more detailed photos of The Baba House in Niel Road:




                            Last edited by ombugge; July 1st, 2011, 06:46.

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                              Re: This is Singapore

                              The other day we took a walk around in Tg. Pagar and Duxton to look at some of the old and some of the new buildings in the area.

                              First some of the old buildings that have survived:


                              Including the old Swimming Pool:

                              The first public Swimming Pool in Singapore. It shut down a few years ago but it appeared relatively untouched.

                              The Diving tower is still standing:

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                                Re: This is Singapore

                                In contrast, the 52-story, 7-block "Pinnacle@duxton":




                                Being up on a hill it kind of dominate the cityscape from some directions:
                                Last edited by ombugge; July 1st, 2011, 07:44.

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