Can the Power of the Sun Pour a Cocktail from a Height of 72 Feet?

Erik travels to Gardens By The Bay in Singapore, to answer the question: Can the power of the sun pour a cocktail from a height of 72 feet? (Read more about this video on Erik’s article on

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A Guide to Singapore’s Hawker Food Culture

National Geographic Travel, May 2013

A narrative guide to some of Singapore’s signature dishes, and the hawker food centers to find them. (National Geographic Intelligent Travel, May 2013)

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A Fine City

From the trip blog: "The Global Trip 2004: Sixteen Months Around The World"
Posted February 22, 2005

DAY 488:  Singapore, the island off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, was once a part of Malaysia.  However, the former English colonial port seceded from Malaysia in 1965 and went their own way due to “creative differences;” apparently the Singaporeans were a lot more uptight than the rest of the country.  They soon developed a modern city state with a reputation for being boring, clean-cut, and above all, very anal retentive, so much that locals, ex-pats and tourists alike jokingly started calling it “a fine city,” a pun pertaining to the many steep fines imposed for really benign offenses:  littering, jaywalking, spitting, carrying durian fruit, and even chewing gum.  (Concurrently, less benign offenses result in the death penalty; everyone knows the story of the Australian backpacker who was executed for possession of marijuana a couple of years back.)

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Uniquely Singapore

From the trip blog: "The Global Trip 2004: Sixteen Months Around The World"
Posted February 23, 2005

DAY 489:  Singapore is a hodge-podge of other cultures — Malay, Chinese, Indian, British — all masked by a sleek façade of modernization.  The city-state has often been criticized, even by its own people, of having no real Singaporean identity.  While Carol’s boyfriend Zac described Singapore culture as “like Malaysia, just more Chinese,” Singapore struggles to find its unique place on the world culture stage, other than its regular reputation of being a boringly clean haven for multinational corporations with business in Asia.

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Friends From Little India to Indonesia

From the trip blog: "The Global Trip 2004: Sixteen Months Around The World"
Posted February 24, 2005

DAY 490:  The city-state of Singapore is small enough that one can see all of its points-of-interest in just two or three days, and this being my third day in town, it was time to wrap things up before heading off to Indonesia that night to catch up with my old friend Henricus.  However, before catching up with an old friend, there was still time to make a new one.

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The Beginning Of The End

From the trip blog: "The Global Trip 2004: Sixteen Months Around The World"
Posted February 28, 2005

DAY 494 (4 days since last Singapore entry):  Flying across the equator from Jakarta back to Singapore was just one leg in a long gradual journey back home.  However, there were still ten days left until The Return To New York, and I had no intention of letting the fun of travel let up just yet.

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The Day That Never Happened

From the trip blog: "The Global Trip 2004: Sixteen Months Around The World"
Posted February 28, 2005

DAY IN LIMBO:  Remember this conversation in India from Day 386: Trinidad. Erik Trinidad.?:

“Which way are you going?” [Bea from the Miami Ski Club] asked me [en route to Udaipur’s Lake Palace].

“The way that you earn a day.”

“What do you mean?”

“You know how when you cross the International Date Line [across the Pacific from the west] and you lose a day but then you gain it back?” I said.  “I’m only gaining a day.”

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When he’s not making a living as an interactive/motion designer or playing with fast food, Erik R. Trinidad is a travel writer, blogger, video host and producer focusing on adventure and culinary content. His work has been featured on National Geographic Intelligent Travel,,, Saveur, Condé Nast Traveler, and Hyenas Laughed at Me and Now I Know Why, which also includes the work of Tim Cahill, Doug Lansky, Jennifer Leo and Rolf Potts. He has also referenced his travel experiences in his solo book, Fancy Fast Food: Ironic Recipes with No Bun Intended.

For over ten years, Erik has traveled to the seven continents of the world — from Timbuktu to Kalamazoo — with a curiosity for exotic foods and a thirst for adventure (and writing material).  In his travels, he has been mugged at knifepoint in Cape Town, extorted by corrupt Russian police on the Trans-Siberian Railway, stranded in tornadic storms in the American midwest, and air-lifted off the Everest Trail by a helicopter that was thankfully paid for by his travel insurance.  But it hasn’t been all fun; he has also donned a tuxedo amidst the penguins of Antarctica, paraded with Carnival-winning samba school Beija Flor in Rio, run for his life at Pamplona’s “Running of the Bulls,” cage-dived with great white sharks, gotten shot point-blank in the stomach in Colombia (while wearing a bulletproof jacket), and above all, encountered many people around the world, including some Peruvian musicians in Cuzco who learned and played “Y.M.C.A.” at his request. He loves the irony that, after everywhere he’s been, he has never been to Mexico.

Erik writes stories and news articles when he’s at his base camp in New York City, and continues his blog when he is on the road — provided he’s not occupied tracking down lost luggage.

Additional news/article clippings at

See Erik talk about travel in an American Express ad:

Read about Erik in this feature article from Filipinas magazine by National Geographic Traveler Associate Editor Amy Alipio.

The views and opinions written on The Global Trip blog are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the official views and opinions of the any affiliated publications.
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