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Different from previous years, the recent National Day celebrations were done virtually and decentralised in the heartlands, which made the 55th birthday of Singapore even closer to our hearts.

As we come down from the highs of this year’s patriotic celebrations from watching the fireworks up-close and personal, here are five other ways we can celebrate Singapore, the rest of the 364 days in a year:

1. Learn to cook local dishes
Singapore is well-known for being a melting pot of different cultures and for being a foodie paradise. Any local Singaporean, no matter rich or poor, will tell you of their favourite hawker foods and local cuisines.

With hawker food under the threat of dying out over the next few decades, a way to cherish local cuisines would be to go through the process of learning how to make your own local delights!

Learning to cook your favourite sambal stingray or hokkien mee will definitely prove useful in future. For example, if you ever have to impress your future-in-laws or if perhaps having to relocate overseas for a period of time.  

2. Support local businesses and products
A much-used hashtag on social media these days, it is important to patronise local businesses and purchase local products to show our support to fellow Singaporean entrepreneurs during these hard times.

Local businesses contribute not only to our Singaporean economy, but to our creative spaces as well. Order your clothes or face masks from local designers and bakes from home bakeries to give everyone a helping hand. Many F&B outlets which have seen us grow up are also counting on us to help keep their premises alive.

3. Rewatch local films and TV shows
Pay tribute to our yesteryears and keep our heritage alive in our memories by watching older Singaporean films produced by our local movie and arts scene. Poignant films such as Homerun and Ilo Ilo never fail to bring tears to our eyes.

For culturally rich films, give 881 and It’s a Great, Great World a try. And, who can forget the famous (or infamous?) Crazy Rich Asians, set against the backdrop of modern-day Singapore society, that catapulted Singapore even more into the international spotlight in recent times.

Some other notable and nostalgic TV shows from our childhood have got to be Phua Chu Kang (recently on Netflix), Under One Roof, Little Nonya and so many more..

4. Invest in your support networks
Living in a small city state might fuel tensions while living in close proximity with so many human beings. Sometimes we need a gentle reminder to continually invest in our relationships. After all, what is home without our families and friends as our support networks?

If your family isn’t here with you, perhaps look out for opportunities to grow your own support network in your local communities. You can consider doing something meaningful such as volunteering at local charities to give back to Singapore society.

5. Keep up with current affairs and government policies
With the overwhelming load of information from local printed news media outlets and alternative online news platforms, sometimes we might be tempted to zone out from the current affairs and news. Especially when Singaporeans seem to always be bickering over social media platforms that turn us off politics and discussions about government policies.

However, with these discussions and policies being critical to Singapore’s development and growth, it is important to know the underlying details beneath sensational headlines. A good example would be the recent elections gaining large amounts of momentum via social media, reminding us that it is pertinent to keep abreast of current affairs.

We need to do our civic duty to think critically and form an opinion on what is happening around us, as Singapore progresses onward to a new chapter.

For more nostalgic content, check out this other article: 4 Things We Miss About Our Childhood in ‘90s Singapore

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