Hong Kong and Singapore are both Asian economic powerhouses. People often compare the two cities. Although both are small and wealthy cities with large populations made up mostly of Chinese people, there is a world of difference between the two. I was in Singapore recently and immediately noticed this world of difference. Hong Kong used to be richer, more efficient, and better-governed than Singapore. But Singapore has made great strides in recent years. The word “powerhouse” means a country, city, or company that has a lot of power and influence. A world of difference means very different. The expression “make great strides” means to make big and quick progress.
There is a world of difference between taxi drivers in Hong Kong and Singapore. Most Hong Kong taxi drivers are surly (unfriendly, bad-tempered) but the Singapore taxi driver who took me to my hotel was cheerful and chatty. If you are chatty, it means you like to talk in a friendly and informal way. I took taxis every day in Singapore and every driver was chatty. Singapore has made great strides in solving its racial problems. Chinese people make up about 92 percent of Hong Kong's population. Many Hong Kong people discriminate against people with darker skin. Singapore is a multi-racial (made up of different races) society. About 76 percent are Chinese, 15 percent Malays, and 7.5 percent Indians.
Government policies make sure these different races live in harmony, which means live peacefully and in unity. To ensure harmony in society, public housing estates must have a mixture of Chinese, Malays, and Indians. Unlike the tiny public housing flats in Hong Kong, Singapore’s public housing flats are about 1,000 square feet. Hong Kong is famous for its harbor view, but Singapore’s bay view is breathtaking (spectacular, magnificent) too. I went to the Fullerton Bay Hotel’s rooftop bar to see the night-time bay view. It was breathtaking. You must see the bay view from there if you go to Singapore. Even though Hong Kong has more democracy, I feel Singapore has a better quality of life.
香港和新加坡都是亞洲經濟龍頭（powerhouses），人們常常將兩個城市比較。雖然二者都是細小而富裕的城市，且大部份人口都是華人，然而二者實有天壤之別（world of difference）。我最近去過新加坡，立即就留意到這個天大的差別（world of difference）。香港曾幾何時比新加坡更富有、更有效率、治理得更好；然而，新加波在近年已有長足的進步（made great strides）。Powerhouse是用來形容擁有許多權力和影響力的一個國家、城市又或公司。A world of difference是指有極大的分別。習語make great strides就是有迅速而長足的進步。
香港與新加坡的的士司機也有着天淵之別（world of difference）。大部份香港的士司機都是脾氣差又不友善（surly），但載我到酒店的那位新加坡的士司機卻是開朗又健談（chatty）。若你是chatty，即是說你喜歡友善地閒聊。我在新加坡每天都搭的士，每位司機都很健談（chatty）。新加坡在解決其種族問題方面也取得了重大的進展（made great strides）。華人佔了香港人口百分之九十二，許多香港人也歧視膚色較深的人；新加坡則是多種族（multi-racial）的社會，大約百分之七十六是華人、百分之十五是馬來人，還有百分之七點五是印度人。
政府的政策確保這些不同的種族也能live in harmony ，意即和諧及合一地共處。為了確保社會能和諧融洽（harmony），公屋屋邨也必須同時住了華人、馬來人和印度人。新加坡的公屋單位有約一千方呎，並不如香港那些蚊型公屋單位般細小。香港以其海港景觀而聞名，但新加坡那濱海灣的景觀也是美得令人屏息（breathtaking）。我去了富麗敦海灣酒店的天台酒吧，觀賞濱海灣的夜景，那真是很壯觀（breathtaking）。若你到訪新加坡，一定要在那地方看一看濱海灣的景觀。雖然香港比較民主，但我感覺新加坡的生活質素更佳。中譯：七刻
Michael Chugani 褚簡寧