When I was asked to write a column on International Study trip, I was really honored to have this opportunity and genuinely blank as to where to start to the package of abundant experience and memories.
Now starting from Singapore the most expensive city in the world and where we first landed by Silk Airlines is a wow factor in my mind. We were led by Dr. Chandra Niranjan ma’am and Mr. Anoop through the entire trip.
As soon as we landed I could see the strictness in passport checking and giving index finger impression of both hands I had never known. But it was fun too being in the group. Two buses were booked and we travelled to the Hotel spellbound at the beautiful roads, the greenery, and the cleanliness of the city. We reached the hotel and right after some rest, we went to Marina Bay (Clarke’s) for dinner. It was amazing feeling to have dinner with your friends beside the man-made lake and the luxurious business space all around.
The next day, it was a day for visiting NEWater where the processing of water takes place for Singapore. The Guide took us through how every pipeline is linked to come down to the storage of NEWater and filtered through various micro neuron pipe and UV. We learnt how much the Singaporeans valued every drop of water. We marveled at how attractive they had made the Visitors’ Centre. They also gave us an option of signing a pledge on how we could save water and the earth. As an experience we were also served water to taste.
Visiting National University of Singapore was amazing with their acres of area, swimming pool and other sports arena. Sports are a priority for any educational institution in Singapore.
Our next visit was to the Tiger Beer (Brewery). We toured around the whole factory to observe how from raw material to the finished product was manufactured.(in the hot oven like factory). It was fun though.
Singapore is a hot humid country but I have to say the van we traveled had a luxury of James Bond kind of movie.
In the evening we had our first experience of the Singapore Metro travel (MRT) and reached Marina Bay to see the magnificent view.
Universal Studio was one of a kind visit to see the amazing creatures of ocean all in different colors and species through glass ceiling. We spent hours watching them. It was amazing to see the technology and management of the whole setup.
Our visit to The Merlion, and the Sound and Light show- Wings of Time at the Sentosa Island was absolutely spectacular. We relaxed at the Silosa Beach to see the sunset, the Indonesian border and the ships laden with oil, learnt the economics of this trade and also the sudden light up of the ships which felt like it was another show. We were amazed at the lightning that looked like it touched the ground and felt the light rain on the beach. On the whole, it was an awesome experience.
We were lucky to have visited Singapore during Chinese New Year of celebration and witnessed the famous Lion Dance. And the story doesn’t end here. We travelled all the way from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) by bus in the night. We were told by the bus coordinator not to have anything in the bus and any mess can cause 100 SD. That was an eye-opener, on how they valued cleanliness.
Visiting Malay University was one of my most insightful visits in the entire trip. The talk by Dr. Samir, Professor, Information Management, on big data, future skills required, Research activity, Malaysian history was brilliant. We experienced authentic Malaysian lunch in the university …not a word for that.
We visited PETRONAS Twin tower and spent the entire evening with fun and laughter sitting along the road side. And what’s amazing was slight drizzle which romanticized the environment.
My most exciting moment was going to Genting highland, 6,118 ft. above sea level. We traveled all the way above through Gondola ride amides clouds where my ear started to slightly close. We got down at Chan Swee Station. The clouds were literally inside the building and couldn’t see anyone beyond 50 meters. We climbed Buddhist Pagoda to get the amazing never to be forgotten sight of my life… the heavy jungle, hills and fresh cold breeze touching your face.
The mega day event where most of the places we covered were 500 acres Putra Jaya, taking pictures near the prime minister’s office, Sultan Palace and International Convention center. The 3-tiered Putra bridge was a sight to see. The beautiful planned city and roads were again amazing.
Royal Selangor which depicts culture, custom of Malaysia producing handmade Pewter products is a sign of excellence. And what’s amazing is all the workers are women. In 1994 F1 trophy was made here. Some of my friends also bought some unique pieces from the store.
The next stop was the Batu caves. It is a naturally formed lime stone caves which has 270 steps and we did climb the stairs….phew…It was awesome.
The last day was again an unforgettable experience. We reached KIAL airport and the whole group shopped for chocolates. With this baggage, we boarded the plane only to be delayed by more than 45 minutes due to heavy rain. We reached Singapore Changi Airport, were received by the airport staff and were literally made to run to Singapore Airlines aircraft as the plane was waiting for more than an hour for our group!!!
We had a sumptuous dinner on the plane and reached Bangalore at 10,30pm.
8 days of travel went by just like that! Wake up, get ready and there is new destination to go every day. That was our schedule…how cool is that waking up to unknown experience that holds ahead.
Ms. Renu Lakra
Student of PGDM with International Trip, Batch ( 2016-18)