I was early for my flight. Dropping off my bag took less than a minute.
‘Excuse me, Sir.’ A group of five young people approached me. ‘Are you a tourist here? We are hospitality students doing an assignment survey. Do you have some time to be interviewed by us?’
I checked my watch ostentatiously. I wanted them to understand they were stealing precious moments from the time of a busy man.
‘Will it take more than an hour and a half?’
‘No, Sir. Two minutes.’
‘Fine. Go for it.’
Two microphones and a mobile phone were shoved in front of me and a video camera pointed up my nostrils.
‘How long was your stay in Singapore, Sir?’
‘About an hour.’ I’d arrived on the ferry from Batam in Indonesia and taken the train straight to the airport.
‘What tourist attractions have you seen during your visit?’
‘Um…is Vivo City a tourist attraction?’ It’s a shopping mall right next to the HarbourFront ferry terminal. I hadn’t actually seen it from the inside, but I didn’t want to disappoint my interviewers.
‘What Singaporean food have you enjoyed during your stay?’
‘Er…none.’ I was about to go looking for a snack at the airport. ‘But other times I’ve been here I’ve loved your chilli crabs, lemon chicken and Singapore laksa.’ This was enthusiastically written down.
‘Thankyou, Sir, very much for taking the time to speak to us.’
‘No worries. Always glad to be of help.’ Two minutes gone. Still two hours to kill.
The new(ish) Terminal 3 doesn’t have all the retail options of Terminal 2, but it does have food, coffee, and a Butterfly Garden.
There are over 1000 species of butterflies in Singapore, and at least five of them are represented here. By now evening was falling, so I imagine the other 995 species were already on a break. The information board explained to me that moths fly by night, butterflies by day.