Can you tell how hot it was???
Our first stop was the National Orchid Garden (the largest display of tropical orchids in the world). WOW! A photographer’s dream come true. She explained how some of the varieties came to be; & pointed out orchids that were named after various celebrities. The garden was divided into sections of differing varieties. I think we got a peek at just about every different garden.
Even though we walked in shaded areas part of the time, it was so humid you felt like you were trying to breath underwater. And to think this isn’t even the height of their summer! Some people got all caught up in their shopping; & they were 30 mins. late getting back to the bus.
We made another stop a few blocks away to see the Thian Hock Keng Temple. It seemed so out of place on such a busy street. Something that beautiful should be tucked away on the lush serene slopes of a mountain. Reminded me a bit of the Byodo Temple on Oahu. Every square inch of this temple had me mesmerized.
The final stop on this tour was at the Mt. Faber Lookout. There is a tiny parking lot that leads to a very modern looking building. You would never know from looking at the outside, the treasures found within. There is a fancy portico entrance with a waterfall wall; & a hallway with quirky chandeliers that branches off to several high end shops & a restaurant. You climb a set of stairs with very ornate handrails & lighted cubist panels along the walls that emit this teal green light. At the top of the stairs is a casual outdoor restaurant & the observation walkway with some nice city views. This small building’s décor made no sense; it was a mix of a little of everything. But I LOVED it….the interior of the building was more interesting than the view from up there.
It was kind of hazy; & a good bit of the view was hidden because of tall vegetation or tall buildings. We could see just the front & the back end of the Serenity. While standing there, it hit me that Singapore has a little of everything. There are many religions practiced here; none that make up the majority. There are futuristic skyscrapers. Once we got back on the bus, Carrie suggested that we come back during the evening hours so we could ‘feed the mosquitos’.
We arrived back at the terminal about 2pm. When I said goodbye to Carrie, I just had to tell her that I thought she’d make a fabulous ‘best friend’. Liz was off ship getting ready to do some shopping. I introduced her to Carrie; & we chatted for quite a while. When I left on tour this morning, all I remembered was the long series of moving walkways & escalators that it took to reach the ground floor.
I now realized that it was a huge mall, bustling with people shopping & eating. Hundreds of people must go through there every hour before they depart on the many ferries going every which way. The noise level was LOUD; & I detected not one word of English. The smells emanating from the food court, had me salivating. Do I dare eat the local food??? It was very tempting; I just walked around tooking photos instead.
The only place open for lunch at this hour was the Trident Grill. Andres fixed me a cheeseburger, onion rings & a grilled cheese (which I had later in the afternoon). Bryan rustled up a Dr. Pepper for me; & I learned that he was signing off tomorrow. I thought I was keeping up with who’s leaving when; but I’m glad I found this out sooner rather than later. Fortunately I had some USD so I could thank him for his kind service.
Today’s heat nearly wiped me out. When I booked my tour for tomorrow, it was supposed to leave in the morning; but it was changed to midafternoon. I was looking forward to the views from the Singapore Flyer. But beating the pavement in Little India during the hottest part of the afternoon sounded like a bit too much. Not wanting to become a statistic; I went down & cancelled the tour. While I was down there, I took my newly issued key card for this voyage; & had it ‘hole-punched’. I have a retractable lanyard type device that stays attached to my bag so I can reach (but never lose) my key card. Back in the cabin, I watched as the dock workers used their fork lifts to bring tons of new 'stores' onboard. Wonder what goodies they've got in store for us this segment?
I put my feet up & napped for an hour. Did some work on the blog & ordered dinner. I started with an appetizer portion of the fusilli pasta with pancetta, mushrooms, onion, tomatoes, cream & white truffle oil. Absolutely luscious!
My main course was herb crusted fillet of sable fish with a lemongrass-shellfish sauce, served with saffron potatoes & a stir fry of bok choy & mushrooms. Whatever sable fish is…..it was outstanding.
I went out in the hall to say goodbye to Oomah, who’s signing off tomorrow. I wanted to give her a little something for bringing me breakfast this morning; & she’s been exceptionally friendly to me. She has the section of cabins right next to Liz’s. They’re like 2 peas in a pod; helping each other out if they fall behind. Oomah was a little misty eyed; which got both Liz & I started too. Saying goodbye is always hard when you know there’s a chance you will never meet again.
I did a little work on the 460 photos I took today; but just couldn’t stay vertical much longer.