So, last night I went to Orchard Road for a Christmas Eve experience. It had been raining from the morning, still until around 9 PM that night it still rained lightly. So it was not as crowded as I expected to be, but still crowded. Polices were on guard everywhere and they also helped direct the people traffic.
I went there around 7 PM with Riwut and his two sons, Arashi and Kansha. His wife got an invitation to a party somewhere else so she did not join us. We had dinner first at the Food Republic at Wisma Atria. There were so many people we had a hard time finding a table for us. We had to circle the place several times and waited for others to finish before we were finally able to sit and eat.
It was still rainy when we finished eating. Riwut’s sons did not seem to enjoy the situation so he brought them home shortly after taking some pictures with my newly bought Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ15. I decided to stay to enjoy some more. Starting from Ngee An City aka Takashimaya, I walked all the way to Plaza Singapura along with thousands of other people. Orchard Road was very nicely lit up with countless of sparkling and glittering lamps and bulbs. Along the way loud speakers are installed to play Christmas songs. Statues, decorations, diorama, and Christmas trees were everywhere on the street side. Of course ads about Christmas sale, discounts, and special offers were also there, in larger number.
Some people made use of that occasion to sell fun stuffs like Santa’s hat and outfit, cute little ribbons resembling Santa’s hats, sparkling bracelets, flare sticks, and canned party foam. The latter was used heavily in the foam battle later that night (more on this, soon).
The rain slowly stopped as I walked. It completely stopped when I passed the Paragon mall. There was a big pyramid made of empty Coca Cola bottles there and a nice Christmas tree where a lot of people queuing for taking pictures.
Just outside Plaza Singapura, a young lady and a young lad politely greeted everyone merry Christmas — well maybe not everyone since there were too much people for two persons to greet. The young lady smiled to me when I came nearer and asked if I had been to the Christmas Village. I wasn’t really sure about what she meant and I didn’t really pay attention I just smiled back and nodded quickly. She asked further, “It is nice, isn’t it?” I said yes, though I still didn’t know what was she referring to. I just wanted to go inside to Plaza Singapura as quickly as possible and found a place to sit after a pretty long walk.
I only knew what Christmas Village was when I arrived at the terrace of Plaza Singapura. Usually there were benches where we can sit and enjoy the view. But that night, the terrace was transformed into the Christmas Village. It was a very nicely decorated park, with the Christmas theme of course. It was set up by the folks from St. Andrew’s Cathedral. Statues representing the birth of Jesus’ events were installed everywhere. There were the three kings with their camels that seemed to attract everyone to take pictures with, the shepherds and the sheep, and even Herod and his minions. The sweet baby Jesus and his parents in the stable of course were there. I took some quick pictures then left.
Just outside the village, there was a nice big Christmas tree beside an ark. Was it the Noah’s ark? I didn’t get it what was an ark had something to do with Christmas.
I went inside Plaza Singapore, and there was a show going on. Too bad it was already very late. I only managed to see the last two, I mean one and a half shows. There was a dance when I got there. The stage was already surrounded by a lot of people. Just in front of the stage, there was a wine shop that was strategically located so no one was able to see the show frontally. So I went up to the second floor, trying to find a nice place to watch the dance. Fortunately there was an opening beside a group of Caucasians. I headed there, but unfortunately the dance was over when I got there. Luckily there was one last performance. Two ladies sang a beautiful song, too bad I didn’t know the title although I already heard that a couple of times before. The distance between me and the stage was quite far, so it’s a perfect time to test the 10x optical zoom possessed by my camera. Well, it’s pretty satisfying result for a pocket point-and-shoot camera. People gave a long nice applause when the last performance ended.
Shortly, I got a call from Yenny, telling me that she just arrived at the Dhoby Ghaut MRT station. She came late because she just had an induction program for new employees at her (and also my) company. Great, while others had a half-day work that day because of the Christmas eve, she actually had to attend the induction program after office hour.
She grabbed some fries from Mc Donalds nearby, then we went outside to the Christmas Village to take pictures, again? It’s different, since with her help, there would be me in the pictures. We walked all the way from Plaza Singapura to Takashimaya, that made it a round trip for me. It actually got much more crowded. People began filling the spaces along the road. Occasionally some persons will spray foam to unaware pedestrians. In fact, Yenny got sprayed once or twice. She was upset since she didn’t want to get dirty. So she started to walk more cautiously and avoid people with foam cans in their hands.
It’s almost midnight when we passed Takashimaya and we walked until Isetan. There was a cafe with a live music band thus Yenny decided to stay there to listen to their music. Approaching midnight, the performer started the count down, followed by the surrounding crowds, and followed by another heavy foam battle. If you think Singapore is the cleanest place, well think again, at least not that night. Empty cans of foam and the residu were everywhere. People sprayed the foam to each other everywhere while laughing, cheering, and shouting. What a night. What a Christmas eve.