Home' The Eye : May 30th 2013 Contents 8
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LES SHEIKH HAIR DESIGN
NEW JOICO RANGE IN STORE NOW
A southern take on Singapore
SOUTHLANDERS' TALES -- STORIES FROM AROUND THE GLOBE
Southlanders are a globe-trotting bunch, so we
have started a new series called Southlanders'
We're looking for Southlanders overseas doing
interesting things or living in interesting places.
We'd also look at former Southlanders achieving
real success elsewhere in New Zealand.
If you know of anyone, please get in touch with
us: Email: email@example.com or facebook post on:
Scenes of Singapore
For the past 18 months, Anna Hamill, 27, has faced soaring temperatures and crammed
commuter trains in the vibrant city of Singapore, but the former Invercargill woman does
not regret her move. She talks to Louise Berwick.
Where are you?
I live in Singapore. Singapore is an
island city-state in the heart of South
East Asia -- just 137km north of the
equator. The country is best known for
being a leading financial hub, as well as
its tropical climate and great food.
What are you doing there?
I am living and working in Singapore on
an open-ended OE. The country is very
welcoming to expat professionals and a
great place to build a career. Though I'm
based in Singapore, I try to travel as
much as possible in Asia as well.
Why did you choose to go there?
When I got a job offer in Singapore, it was
an easy choice. Asia has been booming,
despite the global recession -- it's an
exciting place to live and work.
How long have you been living there?
Since October 2011.
What is your favourite thing about
the place you are living in?
The diversity. It's great to have friends
from all corners of the globe and
experience foreign cultures as a local
does, rather than a tourist. Also, it's
summer every day of the year.
What is the weirdest, or coolest thing,
you have seen while you have been
Singapore celebrates its National Day in
August with amazing parades, military
displays and celebrations. The coolest
thing I have seen was Singaporean F-16
fighter jets storming over the city in
rehearsal every weekend, practicing
acrobatic tricks outside my high-rise
apartment window. You don't get that in
What is the worst and best thing you
Singapore's food is among the best in the
world. One of my favourite things to do is
head to ''Satay Street'' -- outdoor satay
stalls that take over a CBD street at night
-- to enjoy traditional Singaporean satay
sticks and cold Tiger beer, with lit-up
skyscrapers looming overhead. As for
the worst -- I'm pretty adventurous, but I
draw the line at most pig offal dishes. It's
a local Chinese delicacy.
What does your typical day involve?
Squeezing on to a crowded commuter
train to my office in the heart of
Singapore's shopping district. I'm also on
an expat dragonboat team -- something
I'd never done before moving to
Singapore. It's much like paddling a
waka. We are currently preparing to race
in Hong Kong, so I'm training several
times a week.
What do you miss about Southland?
Living in a high-rise city, I definitely
miss the mountains, lakes and wide open
spaces. I also miss the fantastic cheap
local produce and, of course, my family
and friends living in Southland.
What was the hardest thing to get
used to over there?
You get used to the oppressive heat and
humidity but due to the scarcity of space
in Singapore, rent is extremely expens-
ive. I had a flat viewing that was NZ$1250
a month just for the room, but there was
no glass in the windows. It was worse
than any student flat. Thankfully I found
a much better option.
What advice do you have for other
Learn an Asian language -- especially
Mandarin Chinese --- and stick with it at
university, even if you're learning from a
book initially. It really opens up a huge
number of professional opportunities.
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