Welcome to my world…
*Reader Discretion is advised. Try not to judge me. Lets get started…*
I woke up excited this day. With no plans until 6:00pm that night, I pondered how I would entertain myself until then. Since the shared bathroom at my place was gross, I went to “heaven” (aka Pure Gym ) to shower. Afterwards I got caught up on work at Starbucks and then started my exciting day of shopping… AGAIN. But this time it was different, I started paying attention to the architecture of my surroundings. I stayed right in the heart of Singapore, Orchard Rd to be exact, and I noticed that all of the buildings looked like they didn’t belong next to each other (FORESHADOWING!). But all together the uniqueness of each building made an extremely beautiful skyline. For example, one building would be shaped like a rectangle and the building right next to it would have crazy geometric shapes and the building right next to that would have tons of flashing lights enough to make anyone have epileptic seizures. Check out the buildings I saw during my shopping excursion:
Singapore reminded me of a cleaner version of New York City. This sense of familiarity made me feel safe, comfortable, relaxed and at home. Never once, did I question whether or not I made the mistake of coming to this “strange” country by myself, until now.
After my expensive day of shopping came to an end, it was almost time to meet my friends for dinner. With 2 handfuls of shopping bags and my headphones blasting (FIRST MISTAKE), I headed straight to the train station to find the machine to put money on my card. All of a sudden I felt someone extremely close behind me, mumbling in my ear.
Side note: This happens to me alot because I live in a medium size city and I know friends who do silly stuff like this. BUT I am far from home and I can count on ONE hand how many people I know in this country “So who the fuck is behind me?”.
I ripped out my head phones and I gazed up at this 6’3 ft/75.6 inches tall – 50 year old looking-exploded porous skin having-thin enough to be swiped on a credit card machine-Indian man with Twilight werewolf looking eyes. I stared at him as if I had accidentally eaten a black jelly bean. I said in the rudest tone I can muster “OMG, you scared me. YES, can I help you?!”
He said in his thick Indian accent “Oh no, I didn’t mean to scare you. I just said that you are very beautiful.”
Looking at him less crazy, I said “Oh…” Now that my guard was down through his pitiful attempt to compliment me, I thought it would be a good idea to take advantage of this awkward ass situation by getting him to help me set up my card (SECOND MISTAKE).
“Well since you are already talking to me, do you mind telling me where the machine is so I can put money on my card?”
He said with a smirk “I’ll tell you, if you allow me to take you out for a drink.”
*BRUH* Looking at him with the blankest stare, I said “Sir….I don’t drink, can you just tell me where the machine is? (THIRD MISTAKE, I should’ve left)
He said “Ok, it’s right over here. Let me walk you over to it”
Once we reached the machine, he asked me where I was going and I told him the train station location.
“Are you meeting your husband?” He said.
“No.” (FOURTH MISTAKE, I should’ve said yes)
“Oh… Are you meeting your boyfriend?”
“No.” ( FIFTH MISTAKE, I should’ve said yes)
In a joyous tone he said “Oh great! Well then, $10 should get you to were you need to go”
He takes my train card and my cash and attempts to load the card. After a couple of seconds, he told me that the machine was broken and that I would have to seek help from the teller. He handed me my card and cash and we proceeded to walk over to the teller (SIXTH MISTAKE, I should’ve told him his services were no longer needed)
*Come in closer ladies and gentlemen*
As he was escorting me to the teller this man was tried to HOLD MY HANDS as if he was my date to prom (mind you I was still holding 50 million shopping bags)!
I snatched my hands away from him, shocked. He says “I really love your henna, it’s quite beautiful” (SEVENTH MISTAKE, I should’ve smacked his ass and left)
*Come in even closer ladies and gentlemen*
Before I could even muster an appropriate response, this old ass man puts his arms around my waist!
Side note: Have you ever been in a messed up situation where, instead of being angry or upset you just stood there in amazement and had an outer body experience? Questioning “is this life”? This is what was happening to me at this moment. Until I snapped out of it (kinda)…
I smacked his hands off of me and loudly said “OH NO SIR! WE DON’T DO THAT IN AMERICA!”
I rolled my eyes, whipped my braids around and started communicating with the teller. This idiot proceeded to tell me his life story about when he was living in Hong Kong, how he met a beautiful black woman who was a lawyer and how much fun they had together”
After receiving my card from the teller, I said “Well, you need to go ahead and be with her because…”
He interrupts me and professes “ I’m black! Your black! WE just need to be together.”
Sidenote: This is the first time in my life I have ever heard an Indian person refer to themselves as black, but that is a blog post for another time. Second of all, what does being “Black” have to do with me wanting NOTHING to do with his creepy decrepit ass?
I said “No”
“Well, how about that drink?”
“I don’t drink”
“How about I get you something from 7/11?”
There was a 7/11 kiosk right next to the teller. And it is at this point I am realizing that this guy is not going to go away and I have to figure out the safest and most discrete exit strategy possible.
Trying to keep cool, I said “sure” and we walked over to the 7/11 kiosk. I opened the refrigerator door and picked a random drink and handed it to him. I gave him the FAKEST SMILE KNOWN TO MAN and he smiled back genuinely. He took the drink and said “My drink is over here. You stay right here, my beautiful.” As soon as he turned his back, I RAN like Usain Bolt was my cousin.
*Sidenote: I was a track star in high school*
The Orchard road train station is HUGE because it’s a mall inside of a station, not to mention it also has over a million Singaporeans inside of it. So can you imagine being in an Asian country and seeing one black girl, holding 20 shopping bags, running for her life inside of a train station, sprinting in between people, jumping over obstacles, mumbling things to herself (I was actually praying out loud), with braids flying every where? There goes my “safe discrete exit strategy”.
This train station was so huge that I was lost for 10 minutes but I didn’t stop running until I reached an emergency exit. Once I finally found an exit, the exit led me right to the entrance of my home. At this point, no one in my life can never tell me that Christ does not exist, because he definitely watched over me this day.
I shed a few tears at this moment because a million thoughts were going through my head. I was beating myself up for being so stupid and entertaining that creepy guy for as long as I did and I was beating myself up for being so damn comfortable in my surroundings (this is NOT my home). My guardian angel was working over time watching over me during my trip. Whats ironic is, I traveled to this country alone and every concerned stranger I’ve met up until this point was afraid for my life, except me! I justified this crazy trip by saying “I do plenty of things by myself all the time” and “I’m from Washington DC can’t nobody do anything to me.” But when you know better, you do better and I know better next time I come back.
At this point I said “FUCK the Singaporean Train system! I am going to take the finest cabs this country has to offer!”
After going home and pulling myself together, I hopped in a cab and met my girls Earlene and Dilys at this famous Korean BBQ restaurant. While Dilys was preparing our meal, I told them about the wild day I had.
Dilys almost dropped the tongs out of her hand and said “Oh no! Vicky, how could you stop and talk to a random man like that!”
“It must be an American thing” said Earlene.
I sighed and said “No, its not. I just left my common sense at home today. I know better now. Hey, just an FYI, unless I am with you guys I am not taking a bus or train during my stay here.
“But, we have the best…”
I interrupted Earlene and said “Nope, I don’t care how expensive it is or how nice it is, I am never getting on the train again.”
We all laughed and continued to enjoy our food.
After dinner Dilys’ left and Earlene and I continued to chat and site-see around the local hot spots. Check out the things we saw, Singapore is an amazing place: