Overseas Singaporeans from South Korea to the United States joined in the Golden Jubilee celebrations over the weekend with parties involving friends, family and, of course, food.
Some, like New York-based photographer Juliana Tan, 26, stayed up till the wee hours of the morning to watch the National Day Parade (NDP) live.
“I guess there’s more nostalgia when you’re away,” she said, adding that her favourite part was the vintage march-past.
“It’s very heartwarming to see the pioneer generation being part of the parade. It’s also a great reminder of how young Singapore is. In one generation, we’ve come so far!”
Even as various Singapore embassies hosted official National Day functions, many Singaporeans celebrated on a smaller scale.
In China, about 100 Singaporeans tuned in to a live telecast of the NDP at a Harry’s Bar in Suzhou, at an event held by the Suzhou Singapore Club. They ended the night by setting off a round of fireworks.
Mr Ching Keng Ghee, 51, general manager of an aerospace company, said this was the first time he watched the parade live in his 18 years in Suzhou, where he is based with his wife and two daughters, aged 21 and 22.
“We bought the SG50 polo shirts from Giordano in Singapore to wear for National Day,” he said. “Fifty years is a milestone and we wish Singapore a very prosperous future and many good years to come.”
Yesterday, the Singapore Club Seoul also screened the parade live at a serviced apartment. More than 60 Singaporeans turned up.
The club’s president, Ms Chua Pei Chi, said: “This is the first time we’ve held a live screening.
“It’s very meaningful to celebrate Singapore’s 50th birthday overseas with fellow Singaporeans.”
The 38-year-old, who runs a trading business in Seoul, added: “I miss food like roti prata, dim sum and wonton noodles.”
Yesterday, students from the University of Western Australia in Perth held a carnival with face-painting, games and a singalong of National Day songs.
“Everyone was so united and the spirit was amazing,” said 24-year-old undergraduate Aarti Gupta. “I am so proud of how far our country has come, and the best part of it is being more than contented that wherever in the world I may be, Singapore stands as No. 1.”