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The February edition [Issue 7] was an enjoyable read. However, no matter how exciting, renovated, cool, urban, hip, cosmopolitan, futuristic, entertaining, historical, interesting or fabulous for dining out, “Urban Singapore” lacks much to “make it on the map.” Downtown manages to be good enough to visit and to do some activities. There are truly a few outstanding “gems.” However, usually, one must have a significant income to enjoy most of what is offered by the Orchard Road area. If a family living in around there lacks money to send children to private schools, there is a paucity of quality public education for the children.

The Orchard Road area lacks a balance of day-to-day living conditions and amenities to make it a really great place to live. It does better as a place to visit, providing you remain within the narrow, carefully packaged area that has been groomed by the Singapore Tourism Board. I remember the Scotts Road area before the 1970s. Much was “thrown out with the bathwater” in the subsequent decades of so-called urban renewal and gentrification. Orchard Road is still not the “heart” of the city as a real “heart” should be.

That status was “done in” by decades of so-called urban renewal and “improvements.” The Heart of Singapore is still an oxymoron. I don’t expect it to ever become what it really should be and should have become long ago. -Sincerely, Mrs. Monisha Das Gupta

The Orchard Road area may not be perfect, but if you were really here in the 1970s, then we don’t have to tell you what it used to be like. Even if you only moved here a decade ago, you have to be impressed with the transformation that’s taken place there. Does the city yet have everything? No, but they’re working on it. Which is more than you can say about a living hellhole like KL. What’s that? Kuala Lampur isn’t a crime-riddled drug den with its own area code? Never mind, then.

Hey Think!

I am sad to see that your magazine is moving more into the USA bashing political commentary arena. You have now lowered yourself to the level of the other regional publications. Try to keep your bias to yourself and understand that many Think readers are happy about the US election results. What’s next in your quest for cheapening your magazine, placing prostitutes in the back of the book? How sad. -Rusty, an American on East Coast Road

What would be sad is if we ignored the biggest election in the history of the most militantly adventurous country in the world. Come on, when one of the top grossing movies of the year is a political “documentary,” how can we not get involved? I’m sorry if you’ve felt we’ve been biased. Our Humanifesto column is an opinion piece and will, by definition, not align with everyone. But that, and its unique brand of hilarity, is what makes it a good read. Here’s to fair and balanced journalism! Thanks for the letter.

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