Grace and I recently spent our vacation in Singapore over her Spring Break. From the moment that Grace’s parents picked us up at the airport to when they brought us back a week later, our trip was filled with what I’ve now come to expect from Singapore: gatherings with friends and family, often over good and cheap food, various cheap public transit options to get between them, and the continual pursuit of air conditioning to avoid the year-round heat and humidity.
While the flights were super long and the trip felt short, we really appreciated being able to spend that time with friends and family. Even though we didn’t get to see everyone we wanted to see, it was still very refreshing to catch up and have fun together with those that we could.
In the midst of a very unusual presidential campaign, it can be difficult to think past the election in November. To try to grasp a wider perspective and see around the corner to the most useful politics of the future, I decided to read The Fractured Republic by Yuval Levin, hearing about it from this review. Levin is a conservative intellectual, but the book comes highly recommended by thinkers on both the left and the right, and deservedly so, as I would soon discover.
Not everyone has the time to read hundreds of pages, so I thought it would be useful to summarize it here. If you’re at all intrigued, I would highly recommend reading the full book, of course. Levin builds his theses very thoroughly and convincingly, and seems to describe quite accurately a wide variety of perspectives on recent history, not just his own. His writing is appropriately nuanced and footnoted in a way that this condensed version inevitably will fail to be.
Over the summer, I visited Singapore with my girlfriend Grace. It was my first time in the country, second time in Asia, and third time crossing the Pacific: I’d also been to Taiwan on a mission trip in 2010 and Australia for a summer science school in 2007.
Since writing about my impressions of the country as a whole, the #1 question I’ve been asked is, could I live there? It’s been on my mind since before Grace and I started dating, as she’s on a scholarship bond that requires her to return to Singapore and work there for 6 years after she finishes her PhD. So I’ve been saving my answer to that question for this post, where I’ll discuss more of the personal side of our trip, the aspects that I think about when considering if I’d want to live there.
Hello again from Singapore! After barely getting to Singapore, Grace has taken me all over the island, meeting friends and family, seeing sights, and most frequently, eating food. We still have a couple days left here, but I’ve had enough time to make and process my observations. Plus, today is Singapore’s 50th National Day, the “golden jubilee” anniversary of independence, an appropriate time to post. My observations and thoughts are combined into five characterizations of the city-state of Singapore I’ve picked up on.
Hello from Singapore! I’m currently visiting with Grace for vacation and a chance to meet her friends and family. This will be the first of a few blog posts about my experience and further thoughts.
When we first booked our flights to Singapore in April, Grace reminded me to check if my passport was up-to-date. Sure enough, it expired in 2016, so I thought I was fine. Little did I know… Read more of this post