Singapore is just south of the tip of the Malay Peninsula, separated by the Straits of Johor. Singapore lies on one of the world’s busiest shipping lanes along the Strait of Malacca and the South China Sea. The former British colonial trading post gained independence in 1965. Officially the Republic of Singapore, is known as the Lion City (Singapura) and consists of the main island and about 64 smaller offshore islands, including Sentosa (the largest of the offshore islands), Pulau Ubin, St John’s Island and the Sisters’ Islands. Two bridges connect Singapore to Malaysia and Continental Asia. The Johor–Singapore Causeway links Singapore to the Malaysian city of Johor Baru on Peninsular Malaysia. Singapore has a resident population of 4 million (in 2020). Spoken languages are English, Malay, Chinese (Mandarin), and Tamil.
Singapore is known as a tourist destination and for its hot and humid climate, being very clean, and growing in area due to reclaimed land. The city-state is a shopper’s paradise, besides the usual luxury brands sold in luxurious malls with luxury air conditioning, you can buy almost everything except chewing gum.
In the early 1980’s I would regular visit the House of Hung jewelry shop to buy raw uncut diamonds for re-sale in Brisbane. When the movie TOP GUN was released, I loved that they touched up Tom Cruises’ eyes to make him appear more Asian to increase sales. DJ and I watched President Bush arrive on Air Force One the day after chewing gum was banned (President Bush apparently loved chewing gum), and it was the day after the President threw up in the lap of his Japanese host.