Sunday, December 2, 2018
Oct. 22, 2018 Singapore
We’ve arrived at at the port of Singapore at 7 a.m.and it’s time to leave the ship. Singapore is in a bit of mist at but even from the port it looks lovely. I am so looking forward to spending 3 days here but hoping it isn’t as hot as what i ’ve read.
Annie, Li and Scott and i will be staying at 81 Dixon Hotel in Little India and i’m hoping to be able to see lots of this city.
But first the terminal routine and guess whose bag went missing? Yup, you guessed it. The worst part was that i couldn’t remember what colour it was......i know, old -lady -itus! But i had just recently bought it for this trip and all i remembered was blue. Hell, almost everything i own is blue. I like blue a lot and will buy something blue before any other colour. So i thought it was all a nice bright shade of blue and i thought of other colours but blue kept surfing to the top of the list.
NCL gives different coloured tags which means each colour is at a different time of departure. Our tag colour was brown and in the terminal there were all the brown tagged suitcases, and the red, yellow, blue etc. Each colour had several long rows together and they were about a million miles long. Ok, exaggeration! There were all the suitcases of 2400 passengers as i know the ship is now going into dry dock and no passengers were left onboard and no new ones will be boarding until the ship is all renewed. All of my party of Annie, Scott and Li found their luggage and i was still looking for mine and couldn’t find it. So they all started looking for it too. I was sure it was a nice light blue but i and the others looked at the tags on all suitcases whatever the colour was for almost two hours and as the owners claimed their luggage the line of suitcases grew smaller and mine still wasn’t evident. It was a nightmare and then suddenly there it is! I had no idea that my suitcase was actually black and grey with very tiny touches of blue. Did i feel like an idiot! OMG it was so embarrassing. I’ve often noticed that some people put a brightly coloured ribbon or many ribbons or something to easily spot their bag but for some reason i never have. Yes, you better believe that from this moment on i will have a huge cluster of blue ribbons like you wouldn’t believe! So i’ll never know if it was there all along or if someone had accidentally taken it and found out it wasn’t theirs and they returned it or what.
Finally we were able to get out of there and into a cab to take us to our Hotel 81 in Little India in beautiful downtown Singapore. Annie and i got room # 333 and it was clean and sufficient with a window to a back alley and the roofs of a lot of buildings. But then we discovered the shower is in the bathroom......I mean the shower involves all of the bathroom which is sunken about 1” and we’ve stubbed our toes on that lip exiting the shower/bathroom many times already. There's no shower stall or anything, just one room where you stand there and shower with the water running all throughout the bathroom, behind the toilet and the floor gets wet everywhere in the room. Veddy veddy weird. Maybe a better description is that we had a large shower stall which also held a basin and a toilet. The floor did have a drain but no squeegy to push the water towards it. Result: wet floor all day.
And no wash cloths. None. Just one towel each. No bar of soap either. There’s a dispensary of liquid soap. We’re not used to this after living on a cruise ship of plenty with a separate shower stall, daily supply of many fresh towels, large, medium and small plus wash cloths, bar soap and dispensary soap and shampoo.
So after a look around we took off in a taxi to go to Suntec Mall where we’d walk around and eat lunch ( I had a Starbucks frappachino called the Black Zombie which was made with black sesame seeds, very unusual and new and it was delicious and i also got a cinnamon bun which i found hard to chew so gave it away. I noticed a Swatch store in the mall and planned to check it out on our way back because i really need a new watch and Swatch is my brand because i’m allergic to metal watches especially when it's against my wrist.
However, we didn’t go that way again because Scott had found out that the dbl decker Hop on, Hop off buses were in a different direction and so we went that way and got a 24 hour pass and rode the bus for an hour or so. It was awesome seeing this fabulous city and the architecture is amazing. It’s a very clean city with little or no crime and the only fault i had with it was the heat. Omg, the heat is like when you stick your head in the oven to test if the cake is done, it literally burns you it’s so hot. I noticed the trees and shrubs and flowers all around weren’t suffering at all, in fact they looked strong and healthy so must be the humidity that they favour.
Eventually we had done the full circle w/o hopping off anywhere so we got off at the same mall and then got on another line which i only stuck with for maybe 10 mins and then i wanted to go back to the hotel while my friends planned to stay onboard to go to where the night light show would be visible. It was about 3 pm at that point and the light show wouldn’t be until 9 pm and i was frazzled, fried and tired so we said goodbye and i hopped off within walking distance to the hotel.
Walking to the hotel was a little tricky and i actually walked past it and then figured out that i had gone too far. Back in the hotel after an hours rest i felt strong enough to go out in search of something to eat and i knew i’d need to buy more water too. So i walked down the street and into a small corner store and bought cookies, bananas and water and returned to the hotel room.
Now, this hotel doesn’t have a restaurant but there’s plenty nearby. However, i didn’t want to eat at any of them, sorry but there were pigeons walking and flying around in most of them and flies too. It was just way too hot to eat in a non air conditioned open air restaurant anyway so i decided to pass on the neighbourhood food joints. They use way more spices than what i'm accustomed to anyhow.
Now at 8p.m. i am cold and can’t turn the ac down or off so i tried to call the front desk and the phone is all statically noisy and then you get the busy signal. And there’s no number for front desk at all, neither on the phone nor in any written form. So i planned to hit zero on it but didn’t even get to that point. To top it off there’s no blanket on the beds, just two sheets and i’m in my pj's and don’t feel like getting dressed again so i guess i ’ll suck it up and try to get some shut eye.
There's a temple nearby and several times now i’ve heard a man singing. It actually sounds a little more like chanting so i expect i’ll hear this intermittently. It’s really quite charming and very fitting in this area of little India.