Eurotrip Day 33: Rain

The previous night, the hostel organised a free flamenco show and we went to watch it. It was not very good, I think, although it was apparent the dancer had very strong feet (she was stamping away non-stop during the entire duration). Not bad though, for a free show. Following that the two American girls, the Korean girl and I found our way back to the hostel, where we had supper in the kitchen (they ate doner kebab, I had croissant with chocolate).

Before the show, I had a very impassioned discussion with a Finnish guy staying in the hostel. I felt slightly insulted when he criticised Singapore, saying it's “sterile”, and saying that marijuana, cocaine and other drugs should be legal in every country, that fining people is the wrong approach to curb littering, and that countries with the death penalty are “backward”. I can’t stand these liberal hippie-types who try to impose their radical ideas on the whole world. Apparently the only way is to be as westernised as possible, so that we aren’t “backward” and “sterile”. I don’t agree with the death penalty, and I think Singapore is sometimes too strict, but the thing I hate most is when people criticise Singapore without ever having been here. I do not think at all that we are a “sterile” country. And yeah, Singapore is pretty boring, we don’t do marijuana, taxes are low, we have very low crime, you feel safe walking home at night, there’s no natural disasters, no one disrupts the airline and train services by striking, the streets don’t have horse and dog poo on them, people don’t smoke in restaurants, weather is at least better than London’s, no one vandalises your houses by spraying masterpieces of “graffiti” on them, and food is very edible here. Well, the same can’t be said for a lot of European countries!

- end of rant -

Next morning, the skies were gloomy. Somehow my mood changed a lot. I guess weather has a lot to do with my feelings! I feel so happy and carefree when its warm and sunny, but when its overcast and drizzly, I feel rather sian. Went out to walk a bit but didn’t have much enthusiasm and then got back to the hostel to laze around. In the evening, had a pretty interesting chat with the girls and Arele as well as Betty (Argentinean guy and Hungarian girl respectively; they run the hostel). Then we went for drinks with 3 German guys who were also staying there. It was pretty interesting talking to them and I think I’m getting better at telling which country a person is from based on their face shape.

It was fun hanging out with this diverse group of people from all over the world and drinking with them. But drinking in Spain is pretty tame though compared to the UK. Really, the UK wins hands-down for drinking culture. The people there just drink and drink and drink, and beer comes in pint-sized mugs. Unlike Spain, where they come in tiny glasses that are less than a half-pint in volume. The Germans were positively mocking the beer in Spain, saying that they have better beer in Germany. Funny thing about Spain is that they have a very uh, warped, version of time though. They eat dinner at 10pm, drink at 12am, and then go partying at 3am till 8 in the morning.  Perfect country for insomniacs, I guess. And if you like working, go to Korea – they have just 5 days of annual leave a year, or so we heard over drinks. Germans and Spaniards are entitled to at least 1 month.

The most amazing fact about Europe is that you have so many diverse countries with totally different cultures, food and drink (British microwaved food and Spanish overpriced tapas are miles apart), peoples and languages (for example, Hungarian is not at all related to the language of any neighbouring country around it, its supposedly closer to Estonian and, get this, Korean!). And all packed into a tiny continent, with small countries, side-by-side. I’d say its definitely the most diverse region in the world.