Then I saw things like this: "Riot in Little India". "Police cars overturned". "Ambulance burned". "Mob of 400".
In Singapore? It can't be. We've not seen a riot in 40 years. No way.
Unfortunately, yes way. Indeed, late on Sunday night, a riot started in Little India, Singapore. It all started when a man was knocked over by a bus. Then one thing led to another and things quickly escalated.
One fatality, about 20 casualties (including the police officers and Civil Defence officers who arrived to break up the chaos), lots of damage.
That this were to happen in a country I call home, the very one I feel safe in, is shocking. But what's more appalling is the horrible comments that are floating around. From Singaporeans. My countrymen. The very people I am to bond with in times of emergency.
Three things kept me up last night
1. Could any of the nice friendly workers the kids and I often wave at, and buy apples for, be involved in this? I don't know which would affect me more - knowing that they were actively participating or if they had been innocent bystanders and had gotten hurt
2. I am married to a foreign worker. What if one day we too were to be targets of some mindless attack?
3. The kids. We live so close to Little India. We've made several trips there. We've eaten there, shopped there, made friends there. I can only hug them and say a prayer of gratitude that yesterday was not a day we decided to do one of our trips.
I can only hope that if and when I have to leave my country and my family to work in a foreign land, that the people there are either gracious and tolerant enough to accept that I'm different, or just leave me alone.
If you are Singaporean, I urge you to stick to the facts. It helps no one to have unnecessary comments floating around. I you are not in Singapore, I invite you to keep us in your prayers.