Saturday continued: Last night we went out at about 8pm, it was dark, warm and humid and we came out in a hot sweat. Had forgotten how nice a balmy tropical night is, like going for a walk at night with M&B in Madras.
We crossed the road using a pedestrian walkway / bridge and then walked down to the river front which had lots of bars and restaurants. Had a beer and gin sling respectively and some wasabi prawns, Thai fish cakes. Staggered back feeling rather knackered. Camomile tea and bed I think.
3.5hr city tour starts at 9, so we have decided to go down for an early breakfast, if we are awake , to beat the crowds.
Had a good night in a very comfy bed, set the alarm for 6:30 and went down to breakfast at about 7. Incredible spread catering for all nationalities. Several different airlines seem to have their crews staying here, which is probably a good sign. Had a huge breakfast starting with pineapple, melon and yogurt then vegetarian noodle stir fry, followed by chick pea curry and paratha. Denis also had rye bread, cold meat and cheese (he didn't like the noodles).
This isn't meant to be a food log but the breakfast was pretty amazing. We could have also had fried rice, lots of stuff we didn't recognise -I tried a small ramikin if what turned out to be a savoury set custard with mushrooms, not very nice. Plus "normal" breakfast items: eggs etc and toast, Danish pastries. ....
So, well set up for the day, went on the city tour. ....after that we have nothing organised until we get picked up tomorrow evening at 7:45 for a 10 pm flight to Melbourne. Raffles is on our agenda but need to decide the rest.
The city tour was informative (may too much info delivered very quickly ) and we saw lots of things that we may not have seen on our own. Went to the Botanical gardens with entry to the orchid gardens which was stunning.
Then to Little India, nice to see but the guide did a lot of explaining about Indian sweets, veg, garlands, .... which we didn't really need. I would have preferred time to shop they had lovely little clay diwali lamps, nice kurtas...
Short drive to Marina Bay to see the Merlion Bay - symbol of Singapore with the head of a lion and tail of a Mermaid. There is also an hotel which is 3 separate towers linked by a huge boat on the 54th and 55th floors which is the swimming pool restaurants etc. All the buildings are different, most very modern but beautiful in design. Parts of the town have been built on what used to be the sea, some since we were here last in 1985.
Our final stop was a Chinese temple, also v interesting to learn about Taoist gods and goddesses. Lots of people praying and burning incense as it is the weekend and the penultimate day of the Chinese New Year. This is the Year of the Monkey and I am a Monkey as they go in 12 year cycles and I am a multiple of 12 this year. Need to find out the significance of this.
After the Chinese Temple, we left the group in Chinatown to venture out on our own; had lunch in a restaurant with weird and wonderful things on the menu. Afraid we went for stuff we know like prawns, asparagus, aubergine and fried rice. We were the only non-Chinese people in our part of the restaurant and the only ones who ordered fried rice - might be like chicken tikka masala, a curry not heard of in India. Took a taxi back to the hotel only to discover that we were quite close anyway but as it is so hot, it is a good thing we did.
Went out again at 5 ish, after a siesta, cup of tea and some knitting. Walked in a leisurely manner along Singapore River Walk down to Clark Quay. Booked our 19:30 boat trip circular route to Marine Bay (Merlion venue) which includes watching the laser light show from the boat at the bay. Watched several lots of nutters doing some reverse bungey rides while we were waiting for the boat. All very enjoyable.
Laser light show at Marina Bay
Walked back to our hotel via a Persian restaurant, had Singapore gin sling and shared a starter platter of meatball, lamb mince, aubergine, humus and spinach. .Might go back there for lunch tomorrow.
Back at the hotel around 10 - showers and bed. Singapore is great, we liked it 31 years ago and if anything it has improved.
My Ollie & Nic big tote bag is disintegrating all over me - the faux leather does not like the heat and humidity I guess. I will probably bin it tomorrow but will then be left with just my hand luggage back and no handbag. Shopping opportunity in Melbourne perhaps?!