Our blog for our trip to the far east. Taking in Singapore, Thailand, Laos and home before and after we leave

Monday, March 20, 2006

20th March, an un-named cybercafe, Bencoolen St, Singapore

We made it. Inside where I'm typing this it's comfortably airconditioned, but outside it's as tropically steamy as you might expect.

Our flight was OK, despite being surrounded by the French. It was Air France, so what can you do? We arrived at about 7-30 and made for our hotel, City Bayview. Rooms are set out like in a Travel Lodge, but with better decor, and missing that all-pervading odour of Ford Mondeos, Ginsters, and looming middle-aged crises.
We wandered around looking for somewhere to eat, eventually settling on Bugis, formerly a nest of vice, now nicely sanitised as is the local custom. It's still very much Asian in general, Singaporean in particular with a typically hawker centre, and a vaguely touristy market. The fruit stall has the real scent of Singapore though: a slight waft of durian.

Later we found our way to Chijmes, a converted convent, with the cloisters converted to shops, and the courtyards now containing some lovely bars. It's definitely worth a visit. We ended up at a place called Hog's Breath where they were showing the Newcastle v Liverpool game. I wish I hadn't bothered because we lost 3-1.

Today we did te Bird Park which is also worth a visit. It's obviously a tourist attraction, but it's done so well. The enclosed aviary with it's 30m artificial waterfall is impressive, as are the birds of prey and flightless birds. I would have done some photo, but I've forgotten the camera. Avoid the cafe because it's speciality seems to be daylight robbery since you'd pay three or four times the prices you would in hawker centre. The lory loft was pretty good where you can buy a tub of stuff to feed the loris (small, noisy, colourful parrots). I was immmediately inundated by the birds, asnd didn't sustain a single drop of guano. As a method of acquiring H5N1, it certainly beats working in a chicken factory

We made it back, grabbed a bite to eat and went for a swim, neatly avoiding a tropical downour. Tomorrow we're off to Bangkok


Blogger Paul said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

3:58 AM

Blogger Frances said...

Its a shame you have forgoten the camera, can you buy a disposable one? We must have some photos to look at! I feel really envious of you going to Chimes, we loved it there. Look forward to reading your next entry.

11:04 AM

Blogger Paul said...

Westham lost 4-2 to Portsmouth if that makes you feel any better. Their playing Manchester City tonight in the QFA-Cup.

Must be nice being back in Singapore in the heat! I could eat a bowl of chicken rice right now! or maybe a banana pancake.

I bet by the time you read this you've visited Boat Quay. As I remember there's the tallest hotel in the world there... or is it highest restaurant - or both.

Anyway enjoy the Margaritas, Singapore Slings and Tiger beer.

12:25 PM


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