A love letter

Dear Singapore,

I have known no other city as well as you. I have caught glimpses of other cities as I grew older, but I guess it is like the way with lovers who’ve been together for decades – there’s nothing that can replace that love strewn together with the sense of familiarity. You’ll always have a special place in my heart, no matter where the future takes me. I’ll always be rooted to you, whether by choice or circumstance.

I am in love with how freely I can walk the streets at night. I love the crisp night air, and how it feels like to cruise on the roads at night. I love how city the Marina district is with towering architecture of banks and other commercial buildings in the Downtown Core, and how it overlooks the sea and the vast array of familiar landmarks associated with Singapore. The city lights twinkle with the night breeze.

Cities are very similar to one another, driven by demand and supply leading to a consistent backdrop of high-rise commercial buildings of MNCs strewn across the globe. But there’s always some things unique to every city, and Singapore is no exception. That face of Singapore, short of pretentiousness – the heartlands, with its hawker centres, coffeeshops and void decks, shop spaces beneath HDBs, mama shops… these are all things I’ve grown to love and appreciate.

There are a few places in Singapore that I hold dear to my heart. Be it rooftops of buildings like Star Vista, certain malls in the Orchard/Somerset district, or malls of Jurong East, or Esplanade, even if they have become strewn with faded memories of past lovers and almost-lovers with time. The grass patches of Marina Barrage, beaches and parks on off-peak periods… even certain parts of the University I’ve spent 3 years in.

Of course, I do think about the grass on the other side, where life proceeds at a slower pace compared to the breakneck speed here. But I know that everything comes with tradeoffs. I’m not sure what the future holds for me, and my feet itch to crawl the world and truly see with my own eyes what is in the books and movies and shows that I consume. But my heart will always lie with you.

Love,

A true-blue Singaporean who has spent pretty much all her life here in this city she calls home.

Dear future lover,

I hope our love is the kind that I don’t even have to think about. I hope I never have to convince myself to love any single part of you because I hope it all comes naturally.
I hope our love is the kind that is quiet on the outside but loud on the inside.
I want to love you like the space between lightning and thunder – electrified and alive, but silent and knowing.