Last spotted in San Francisco, USA on March 28, 2003, 1:23 pm
Who is he? Where is he going? Where has he been? David Barrett / Quinthar
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One very strange aspect of Singapore is how despite being an island, you almost never see the coast. Even going from Singapore proper to the Sentosa island, it was more like crossing a river than traversing sea. Thus, this picture was my first real glimpse off the island and it was nothing like I expected. For as far as the eye can see are tiny islands covered with oil refineries, between which are dozens of oil tankers and freighters of every shape and description. It was not at all the pretty collection of remote exotic beaches I had for some reason envisioned, but rather something out of a dystopic sci-fi novel. Combined with the incessant haze and murky lighting, it appeared equivalent to the side of "the tracks" in every large city where nobody goes because it's just a nasty, polluted industrial zone. And juxtaposed against the pretty paradise of Sentosa, it was just odd. Regardless, after seeing off the island, I began to understand why it's so easy to just avoid the coast.

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