There is a greater reliance on my ipod now. Everyday, I drown out the crowd, the rumble of the train, the dull roar as we fly through dark tunnels toward work and offices and ever greater crowds.
So I sink beneath a pool of music, willing my mind elsewhere, anywhere but the carriage of silent, weary and sometimes outright grouchy people.
It's something you forget. You move to a different country, one with more space and fewer people and you forget how to cope with crowds, how to raise barriers, how to slip with ease through a throng. It's hard to imagine that I've been away long enough to forget.
I'm not so sure I really changed that much. There's always been that hankering after wide open spaces and moving away just answered that need. I greeted Melbourne's parks,cafes and the Victorian countryside like they were old friends and always reacted badly to the suggestion that Australian cities were 'quiet' and that there was 'nothing to do' in them.
I wish I could wrap it round me like a blanket and take it back to Singapore with me but I can't. You can't bring a whole country with you and so I'm determined to try and bring the attitude I brought with me to Melbourne back to Singapore instead.
Don't look back. Every country has something different to offer and Singapore is itself full of urban curiosities waiting to be explored. Don't try for a pale replica of things you cannot fully experience in another country, instead, look for what is unique about the place and embrace it. I'm going to eat nyonya food, wander the heartlands, smile at random aunties and uncles and go swimming outdoors.
But I'll plan my next vacation around countrysides and star gazing, just so I can let that part of me fly.