My first trip in 1997 to Vienna, Austria was an eye-opener. Under the auspices of VDFMK, the experience in my first European city tour cemented my love of travel. Another culture, different lifestyles and myriad novelties abound. The sight of a shop window adorned with firearms was not your usual scenery in Singapore.
Weather in temperate regions also came as a surprise not unlike outdoor air-conditioning. Rapid changes within the minute proved more shocking to the physical body. Sunny skies then light rain fluttering into snow in the space of a half hour.
I shall not go into food as that is not about this and I have too much to say on this topic.
Lisbon Portugal, Cheltenham UK, Taipei Taiwan, Hakodate Japan are some places I visited by privilege of Arts and Music. It is part of my work and a form of what I do. Being an artist leads me to off the beaten track like visiting local fellow painters’ works in Pujosari Complex in Solo Indonesia. I learnt about the Soari weavers deftly manipulating their looms in Osaka despite their disabilities.
In Seoul Korea, the Disabled People International seminar and exhibitions offered an insight in the disadvantaged folks there. There were even protests outside the venue by such people airing grievances. I suppose it is part of the democratic process.
It was Very Special Arts who brought me to Osaka and then Kuala Lumpur where Petronas Towers was a memorable encounter up only on the eighty-fourth floor, I think.
Palacio de Queluz, Palacio dos CondesD’Obidos, Albertina Museum, Hofburg Palace, Cheltenham Town Hall, Gloucester Castle, Nara Machizukurikan, Tan Po Po No Ye are locations I never would have heard of much less be there in person if not for the Arts.
Arts has afforded me a living and more importantly, a life.