We have been back for over a week, and I’m just beginning to feel normal. The life was sucked out of me, and I’m still not completely my old self, but getting there.
Other than basic errands, I’ve had little motivation to do much, but I finally managed to upload some pics to share.
I thought since I was holed up for most of the three weeks we were away that I wouldn’t have a lot of photos to share, but I do, so get comfy because I decided to do one long post rather than break them up like I did for Florida.
First let me clear up some common misconceptions about Singapore. Yes, it’s in Asia, but no, it’s not in or very near China.
To give you an idea of how far it is from China, the last time I was there in 2012 I transferred flights in Shanghai and it was a seven hour flight to Singapore. That’s longer than a flight from NY to San Francisco. Singapore is actually very close to Malaysia, Indonesia, Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand, and essentially sits on the equator, so there are no ‘seasons’. It’s either hot, or very hot. English is one of four official languages spoken, and due to its English influence, drivers drive on the left side of the road.
And no, dogs are not on the menu, although they are in nearby countries. 🙁
Singapore is an eclectic mix of stunning modern and quaint colonial designs. The iconic Marina Bay Sands, the crown jewel of Singapore, is an architectural masterpiece. Completed in 2010 at an estimated cost of $8 billion, it is the most expensive stand alone resort property ever built. (Rumor has it it will be ‘destroyed’ in this summer’s Independence Day movie.)
The inspiration for the design was a deck of cards. If you look closely you will notice the bottom and top of the structure separates creating an interesting curved design, but it also has a practical purpose…there is a very large, VERY upscale mall located at the bottom.
Interesting side note: in Singapore you can find inexpensive, poorly made clothes (typically in areas like Chinatown) or you can donate an organ and shop at designer shops like Prada and Louis Vuitton. There’s very few, if any, middle-of-the-road places, like a Macy’s or even Bloomingdales.
At 57 stories high, MBS has the world’s highest infinity pool. Although the pool is reserved for hotel guests only, I took a quick dip the last time I was there. It pays to know peeps ;).
Here’s an artist’s rendering. Notice the two small buildings in the water? The one on the right is actually entirely devoted to Louis Vuitton products. Apparently, Louis Vuitton bags are very much a status symbol in Singapore, and it is one of the first items a young woman buys when she begins to work, even if it means blowing her entire paycheck. The other building in the water on the left is what brought Sarissa & Josh to Singapore in the first place. (That was the location of the club they were running).
Next to the MBS are two very large dome shaped structures called Gardens by the Bay. While we were visiting we were fortunate enough to see a fabulous tulip and flower exhibition. (I left my dslr at home and used my GoPro, which is a wide angle/fish eye lens, or phone for all these photos.)
Did you know this about tulips? I didn’t, and found it fascinating.
There were several impressive hand carved wooden sculptures throughout the exhibition. The details were amazing!
We arrived in Singapore on Thursday, May 5th and left for Cambodia on Tuesday the 10th for five days. I told you a little bit about that disastrous trip in this post, but the long and short of it was I was miserable. Being sick in a third world country, when it’s 110 degrees, is not my idea of fun. My head felt like a bowling ball, so I opted out of the second day of our tour. Fisherman went on without me and captured this photo (finger and all lol) of children in a fishing village. These are children, many of whom are still in their single digits, that don’t go to school, and spend their days catching/killing fish by the hundreds.
If you’ve ever been to Asia, you have no doubt seen one of these. You put your feet in a tank, and hundreds of tiny fish have at it and rid you of dead skin. I guess it tickles because these guys were cracking up. Weird, huh?
Of course, no post highlighting our trip would be complete without a snippet about Charlie. We weren’t sure if he would remember us. It had been four years since I had seen him, and five years since Fisherman had, but he did! He liked taking walks with us and shooting back a few bruskys to help battle the heat, but his favorite were belly rubs, and we were happy to oblige. Could he be any cuter???
Every night, twice a night (and three times on weekends), the Marina Bay Sands hosts a fabulous laser light show set to music on the river. I had seen it in the past, but I wanted Fisherman to experience it as well. I took a video of the entire 12 minute event, but it was going to literally take hours to upload to YouTube so I nixed that plan. (We have a VERY slow internet connection). I figured out how to get an image from the filmstrip. Although it doesn’t do the show justice, I hope it provides a bit of an idea of what it’s like.
Notice the vertical lights on the buildings on the far left? That’s where Sarissa & Josh lived up until two years ago, which is very close to the financial district. They now live in a more residential area close to the riverfront, within walking distance to countless stores and restaurants. Think ‘Wall Street vs. West Village’. This area below is steps away from their building. It’s also where I went to get acupuncture to help with my sinuses (it didn’t).
Have you ever been to San Antonio’s River Walk? That’s what this area reminded me of. In September, Sarissa & Josh will most likely be moving to a slightly larger place on this river.
Below was the view from our bedroom. Notice the cranes in the background on the left? There is always construction happening in Singapore. It’s a city growing by leaps and bounds.
This is one of the restaurants Sarissa & Josh own. We didn’t eat there, but we had a quick drink on our last day there with Charlie :).
We took a fishing boat trip after we got back from Cambodia. I wasn’t feeling great, but I did miraculously get a bit of a reprieve for a few hours. Charlie parked himself on my lap for almost the entire trip, which lasted four hours. Maybe it had something to do with the watermelon ;).
I didn’t cast a line, but Fisherman did (of course). It took a couple of hours and a few guys to reel this baby in, but it was totally worth it. We feasted for days. 😉
In other news…
Other than a weekend RV trip in September, we don’t have any travel plans until December when we go to Florida, and that’s just fine with me for now. Being away four out of the last five months is enough. We do hope to take the grands on a weekend trip though, but haven’t figured out when/where yet.
I’ve done a little bit of gardening (translation…weeding) and I’m excited that the seeds I planted in our raised bed before we left have all done well (we had friends water for us while we were away) and we’re enjoying bibb lettuce, romaine and chard. The beets and carrots aren’t ready yet, but they seem to be doing well. This is the first time in recent memory I’ve planted veggies so I’m excited my efforts are successful so far. Sometimes planting from seeds can be tricky. I’ll share more garden tidbits next week.