At the foot of the fjordSeptember 27, 2019 in Iceland ⋅ ☁️ 8 °C
Some sightseeing and free time in our driver’s home town.
More photos from the lovely gardens.
One "garden" I didn't photograph, was a stretch of road where the median strip was mass plantings of bougainvillea, about four meters across, all densely flowering. It went on and on. Our taxi driver said "Did you notice all the plants are in containers? In one hour, the army can move them to the side, them this road becomes an extra runway. If the airport is ever bombed, we're prepared".Read more
Singapore seems to be a whole country based around Botany, from the imprint of leaves in the cement footpath as we returned from our Changi coastal walk, to the supercharged Botanic gardens, Gardens by the Bay. Flowers are everywhere, and a large percentage of them are orchids. Bruce was in flower photography heaven.
We had enough turbulence on our way over that service was suspended a couple of times, but not enough to upset Bruce, who seems to have conquered his fear of flying. I'm so pleased! I, on the other hand, had a moment of fear when I offered Bruce something to chew on during takeoff. "Um, isn't chewing gum illegal in Singapore?" Of course it is! I know that! I felt like some smuggler, and left my stash in the seat pocket when we left. I kept finding stray sticks of Wrigleys in the bottom of my bag over the next day, both of which were disposed of very surreptitiously.
Having a government that has enough time to crack down on chewing gum also made us feel very safe.
So, we started our one Singapore day with an amazing buffet breakfast. Create-your-own crab ball soup was my favourite. Bruce also had sweet potato porridge, which looked like gruel with sweet potato chunks.
When we popped out of the lift at the rooftop pool, we had a great, if hazy, view over the water, I loved the pool, only about four foot deep and overhung with frangipani trees. Our hotel, Village Hotel Changi, wasn't near a metro station, but we had a "live like a local" pamphlet from the hotel. We set off on a coast walk, which could have been anywhere, and was very humid...and then we saw three otters swimming along, so that was a bit exciting.
We had lunch at the local hawker centre, avoiding delicacies like fish head curry ( here's looking at YOU kid), satay offal, and sheep testicles, sold by the slice.
Having exhausted the suggestions in "live like a local" , since Changi chapel and museum is still closed for renovations, we caught a cab to Gardens by the Bay, which we loved intensely. It's just so over the top! Literally, with the vertical gardens on the supertree structures. We were disappointed to hear the flower dome was closed, along with its seasonal display of orchids...but after exploring the cloud forest dome, and floral fantasy, anything more would have been overload. There are So Many Plants! At one point, we walked surrounded by head high orchids, planted so we could experience the four types of orchid scent...delicate, intense, spicy and sweet floral. Who would have known?
We left the gardens to get dinner at the Marina Bay Sands Shoppes. There's a river with row boat rides in the shopping mall! And a large part of the mall is entirely designer shops on a grand scale..."Crazy Rich Asians" brought to life. We ate at the food court, which like everything else was massive, and delectable.
We walked back to watch the light show with the supertrees, and unexpectedly saw another light show with fountains and lasers on the bay, before catching a cab back to the airport.Read more
Thankyou Rodney, for driving us, once again, to start our adventure. We're sitting with a red wine, a cider and a Bloody Mary... it's too late to worry what's packed and what isn't, we're on our way. The big bags will meet us in London...I'm so glad I decided to put all the Singapore things into my backpack. I' m so excited!!!
It still feels unreal, even though I've done it before. There was some query over my middle name being on my ticket but not on my passport. I had a horrible flash of deja vu from 2017, when I'm sure the same thing happened. I remember a rather officious woman saying "Hmph! And where did ' Caroline' come from?" I was so tempted to say "my paternal grandmother". The woman today was very nice, but a bit perturbed that I wasn't following the rules, I was mentally kicking myself, hard, that I hadn't checked everything carefully enough to pick up the mistake. In the end being pleasant, middle aged and having the air of a primary school teacher goes a long way towards smoothing things over. I'll just have to rely on that for five more flights.Read more