Hunting for illegality in Singapore airport


As I trudged the hallways of Changi airport tonight, I was seized by the desire to do something that’s legal in Singapore but illegal in the UK. Only I’m not sure what that could be. Is the importation of mangosteens to Europe still banned?

I was accompanied by La Serpiente, and her Trunki, a small wheeled suitcase she’d alternately push, pulll or demand to ride upon. This was a good way to ear her out before the flight as well as for me to get some exercise, as i rushed to prevent her knocking over random people in the terminal. I wonder if that would-be legal or not.

About ten pm, with over an hour before takeoff, I had a hankering for pizza. (A lot of the terrible junk food in the terminal, like Dunkin Donuts, has gone, to be replaced by outlets serving more traditional Singaporean junk food, like curry puffs and deep fried fish-on-a-stick.) There’s a place called Briocco Cafe, offering pizza and pasta, so i ordered two exorbitantly priced slices of pizza, which they had to cook fresh for me (no margarhita on hand) and which i then took back to my wife at the gate.

The pizza is a good example of what should be illegal anywhere. When they put it into a box, they stuck one slice on top of the other, rather than next to each other, as though they had no conception of the correct presentation of pizza, or didn’t care. The sauce was barely there, two watery tomatoes on top of the slices, and the cheese smelt of body odour and sadness.

Pizza is a pretty resilient food. You can do lots of bad or just incompetent things to it and it will remain edible and delicious. But when it tastes bad even fresh from the oven, with the simplest ingredients necessary, you have some issues.

Then again, there’s no feeling like the joy of earing pizza while the rest of the queue at the gate has nothing. Is that Italian schadenfreude, or was it more akin to masochism?

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