Staying in a top hotel isn’t hard: you get everything and more. From dragonfruit and truffles to shaving kits and top of the line shampoo, life at Marina Bay Sands is comfortable and convenient.
I might be pleasurable being here, but it’s not easy. With luxury and provisions comes constraint. Servant and hospitality culture comes in full swing. Like Bala who gave me his direct line after giving me and Jason a complete tour of our room. Or the beautiful women who bring us espresso and mango juice and seem to only know the words “sorry” and “thank you, sir.”
It’s not just the resort. Whether it’s a facade or not, being in this town feels like being catered to at all times. The lovely opposite side of this is how society is served by the people. I’ve come into contact on a few occasions with the hard sense of being committed to the grand scheme of things, similar to those laws everyone has heard about (no gum chewing, no jaywalking, no drug use). Last night at the National Library Board, our friend Daphne and I were waiting on the eleventh floor for her boyfriend to appear, and my legs were killing me. I sat down to stretch and immediately a security guard came up to tell me not to sit on the floor. Later, another security guard told me not to take pictures after I found a section of lovely archival posters in the reference section. The guard proceeded to follow me around for a while.
But strangely enough, I never feel alone here. Despite the strange communications, an intimacy of unity exists here that makes me love this place and how people live in it. I think it has to do with the food… But that’s another post for another time.