Singapore, after the racing! - Singapore, Singapore
Monday morning, you guessed it once again - we woke up early, warm but today we didn't mind heading out early as we had decided to go and buy a nice coffee somewhere with good A/C, decent wifi and decide a rough plan on what to do on which day, making sure we didn't miss anything we had wanted to do in the city! Coffee stop at The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, back in the city centre where the track had been only 12 hours ago, we couldn't believe how much the city had changed in only a few hours. About $20 for 2 drinks and a slice of cake between us but it was worth it to be able to decide what we wanted to do - the plan for Monday afternoon was to get ourselves over to the South East Asia Aquarium on Sentosa Island. The Island is basically a resort a few stops out of the centre, theme parks, resort hotels, casinos and the like. We got the underground to the Harbour Front which was the nearest station an then decided that we would walk across the boardwalk to the island rather than pay the extortionate by or monorail fares. Even to walk across they charge you $1 or 2 entry onto the island per day! Before we walked across we had a look around the huge shopping centre at Harbour Front station, it was nice to look around shops where everything wasn't $100+ and also be sure that the majority of stuff in there would be decent! That was one of the annoying things about elsewhere in Asia, you either went to the really expensive shopping centres or the cheaper ones often just had little privately run shops that sold a lot of **** that I'm sure nobody ever wants but they just buy as they look like good profit margins when they see the wholesale and retails pricing! Anyway, we made out way to Sentosa Island and had a little walk around before going into the Aquarium - I had a voucher on one of the tourist maps that gave us around 20% off the entry fee when you show a passport, just by showing the ticket person the voucher they were happy to give us the discounted priced which was a bonus! We had been to the Aquarium in Bangkok but were hoping this one would entertain us just as much, and it did - it is the biggest in Asia, and has the largest 'fish tank window' in the world. This one area alone we must have spent 20 minutes just sat in the carpet as it really was just like you were under the ocean, large and small, slow and quick - I wouldn't even be able to guess at how many different types of fish were in this one tank alone. Let alone the other couple of hours we spent walking around looking at everything as anything, a few that we had seen snorkelling in Malaysia - but mainly things we had no idea what they were! We seem to always spend so long in these places, and by the time we had left and simply walked our way back to the Harbourfront it was definitely time for dinner, after walking around and looking at all the options - including Jamie's Italian we unsurprisingly chose the food court. We could never justify spending more when we know we will have an amazing meal there! Becky had a beef noodle soup, whilst I decided to go for a Chicken with cashew nuts and chilli. Both of us very happy with dinner after about 2 laps seeing what was where and agreeing that everything available would be more than adequate and tasty for dinner! All was well and good, make our way back ready for another night, night 5 at the little red dot. We get back to the room, door open and our bags missing along with half our stuff, not overly great we thought! Straight out to reception to be told that the guys earlier that day had moved our stuff as there were no other guests in the room that night, I can see why though they want to fill the rooms to save money not having to run AC, fair enough! But the thing that got us, although I would say me more than anything - after all I was royally fed up before we even checked in with **** first impressions! That morning the other 4 people all left by 8:30am - we didn't leave until 11:30am, that's 3 hours we could have been told we needed to move, that's all it would have taken and there would be no issue! Already fed up of this place that's it, they need to have a rethink about staff as a few of the other issues we overheard when staying were; The 2nd day we hear a guy had arranged to stay a further 5 nights, when he went to pay/ confirm this there was no knowledge of it - no note/ information had been passed on and he was told they are fully booked now. The 3rd night we are there we over hear a girl on the phone (we presumed to owners) as she had arrived to no bed after making a booking - this is eventually sorted. But only after she has called the owner, who has placed notes up around the place saying they want feedback on any issues direct Back to us again; Credit to the guy on the evening shift on reception, he went from being really defensive and aggressive (if that's possible together), to understanding the principle of having half or your belongings moved and the other half left in an empty room without even being told isn't exactly acceptable and was very apologetic for something he seemingly had no control over. I think he realised he was winding me up more and more, that and the notes all over the place that state any issues call the owners may have had an impact. 5 minutes later we even got 2 cans of drinks as a peace offering I think, he said we could stay in our original room for tonight but would have to move tomorrow. He still didn't 100% get it was the fact our stuff had just been taken rather than the fact we had to move, that was that for the night and I started writing for about an hour the worlds longest review on TripAdvisor - which must have something as I had an emailing saying it had 700+ views in only a few days! We still had Tuesday night left to come ahead of us as well, what will that entail! Tuesday - we woke up and I think without 10 minutes I had said to Becky, I'm not staying here tonight! After thinking about it last night and whether or not we should tell them we are leaving a day earlier again or just stick it out and wait one more night! Well that was it, I wanted to leave - the fact it was the fat guy who had first been there when we came to check in and made me hate the place from the start just made it all that much better. Out I go to reception, and within 10 seconds he's being all defensive trying to say it was the guy who cleaned the rooms that was to blame and he hadn't been able to speak to us Monday morning - even though we must have walked passed him 10 times that morning. After me not accepting any of the stuff he said, and the way he was getting me more and more annoyed - that combined with me being ever so patronising about how to use a computer, booking, customer service and the like I said we want a refund for tonight! Knowing their 3 day cancelation policy and making him know that we had already canceled due to him I was pretty blunt that we had good reason to be entitled to a refund, 5 minutes later and I had our money back, perfect! Now we just had to find somewhere to sleep! So happy that we could leave this place I didn't really care about having to spend extra money and immediately went onto booking.com to make another booking for tonight at the hotel we had booked Wednesday-Saturday, thankfully there was still room! Time to pack and leave, 20 minutes later we had packed and made the boiling hot walk to the station! We arrived at the hotel baking, sweating and in desperate want for nice staff and a shower, success! The Rendezvous Grand was right at the end of Orchard Road which is pretty much one of the main roads in Singapore, countless huge shopping centres spread along the 2km length of it. After the stress of the Monday night and moving hotels we made the most of the room by having showers, watching the BBC news and generally being lazy for a couple of hours. At maybe 2pm we made our way out, going for a bit of a walk and grabbing some cheap lunch on the way to one of the big shopping centres. In Malaysia we had found our new favourite shop, 'Pull & Bear' they had amazing jackets, trousers - the lot, all thing we definitely didn't need in the heat and humidity in Asia! After thoroughly looking around there and some of the other shops we decided it was time to get our dinner sorted, we wanted to go to the Singapore Night Zoo - so decided to buy a nice mix of Sushi from the supermarket, and some Japanese beer, Asahi. We made our way back, stuck the lot in the fridge and then started the journey. You could pay to get buses directly from outside the big hotels, including ours that took us straight there but we went for the underground followed by a bus at about a fifth of the price! All pretty easy, 30 minute train journey followed by about the same length of a bus journey after and we had arrived! We purchase out ticket for both the Night Zoo, and the regular Zoo to get a slightly discounted rate and head in for just the Night Zoo tonight. The ticket includes a tram ride around the park - so we get on that pretty much immediately, it must have been a good 45 minutes or so. A guide the whole way around is letting us know what to look out for on either side of us, and not to be worried that in some areas there is little to no fencing between us and the animals. Hardly any lights, and all the noises surrounding you just as if you are watching Planet Earth - the only difference being no David Attenborough in the background voicing over! As you can imagine with no lights and the inability to use a flash it was non existent for photography, but that doesn't matter as we had an amazing time seeing animals out as they would be in the dark. A nice change to a day zoo where everything seems to always be asleep and pretty inactive! After the tram ride we head over to a show that is only on twice a night, a 30 minute show with animal interaction with a bit of the don't litter awareness - but we both really enjoyed it, having animals climbing across right above our heads and running around in front of us was quite cool! We thought that we had covered most of the area on the tram, that was until we looked at the map that we had got with the tickets and realised that we still had a vast area in between to walk around on foot! Off we started, I think maybe another 1.5 hours we wandered around on our own in the dark, with all the animals around you. The narrow walkways and layout really didn't make you feel like you were in a zoo - and is certainly a must do experience in Singapore, we even saw plenty of wildlife that wasn't featured in the zoo itself, on the paths we saw countless lizards - as well as a snake which I wasn't overly fond of! We started to think about what time the last bus was back, and more importantly what time the last train was as now the F1 was finished the trains would have reverted back to their original times. With that we made our way to the exit and then across the road to the bus stop outside, just as we walked out of the Zoo we saw a bus at the bus stop, it was just pulling away so we waited on the side of the road we were. Knowing the bus had to go around the roundabout and would pass us in 20 seconds, we waved and he just pointed to the bus stop - great! Thankfully it was only a 5 minute wait until the next bus, so on we jumped all be it now a bit nervous of the time! The bus was much quicker getting back to the station than on the way as we had no stops to make this time, we got to the station and walked straight to the train we needed. Went to go through and our cards for the train needed to be topped up - they didn't have enough money remaining on them, after we topped up we ran over to the platform and missed the train we needed by maybe 10 seconds, there was only 1 train left and that would only take us about half of the way there! Better than nothing though, so we waited to board that! We thought we had all of out bad luck, but no when we get off the train we walked to the bus stop to see a bus just leaving, the bus that would go to near us. Another 12 minute wait and we got a bus, still dropping us about 2km from where we needed for the hotel - as if it was a final straw we were reading the timetable those couple of km from the hotel, as a bus pulled away, the last of the night - that would have gone to the hotel! Instead we finally got home after walking for 30 minutes, we couldn't have got more unlucky with so many last minute misses. At least we had dinner in the fridge at the hotel, not that we were overly hungry anymore at about 1am, we still ate and then made the most of the amazing bed for a well deserved sleep! Wednesday saw us waking up rather late, well about 9 but not moving 'til nearer 10 at a guess - after the hassle of missing all the public transport we had needed the night before, ending up with another late night after the F1 weekend combined with now having such an amazing bed we thought it was a good idea to get our money's worth! The plan was to go back to the Zoo today, but this time to go to the normal day Zoo - I had originally thought they were the same thing just showing the different animals at different times of the day. I hadn't realised they were both completely separate. Annoyingly the weather was a bit cloudy and rubbish to start off with today, so we made the most of the concierge and got ourselves an umbrella - as the one we have carried around since buying in Siem Reap as a sun umbrella had rarely been used as it isn't too great! With our umbrella in hand and knowing where to go, safely in the knowledge we won't be missing the last bus or train today we made our way. Getting the train we then went in the supermarket that was at the train/ bus interchange to get ourselves something small for lunch and a drink before the extortionate prices at the Zoo. Just like the day before the journey was nice and easy for us today, the rain coming down in bucket loads and then clearing. It had been good for us and stopped by the time we had got to the Zoo and gone in! Once again there is a tram ride that takes you around the whole area so we got on there and just like the Night Zoo made our way around. This tram wasn't as good as the one the night before, you could see a lot less from it but we decided to stay on for the 30/40 and loop the whole zoo rather than getting off to explore at each of the stops just yet. We had decided to stay on as we wanted to get around back to the start to see the Polar Bear feeding time! Having never seen a Polar Bear as far as I can recall it was quite a shock just to see how big this guy was! We spent a good 30 minute or so watching him being fed both in and out of the water, it was pretty amazing to see this huge things happily paddling away through the water! After Polar Bear time it was over to some Gibbons to get our pictures taken just in front of them, soon followed by the Seal Show. After seeing the elephant sanctuary in Thailand I am always a bit sceptical now about how animals are trained in ways to perform, but just hoped that these guys were all done so in a way that benefited them. I guess getting fish every time you swim or jump sounds a pretty good deal to them! Now we had gone around and seen most of the things we had wanted to that were at set times we decided it was about the right time to walk back around and see everything we had tried to see from the tram, as well as the stuff in between. Giraffes, Rhinos again after seeing them last night was amazing! All in all a pretty standard Zoo experience I guess but the space the animals have and the way everything I spread out was really nice to be able to walk around and see for the afternoon! A trip into the shop afterwards and a few purchases to show we had been there, and we made our way back into the city mid afternoon - no missing public transport this time! After seeing Marina Bay from the other side of the water for the whole weekend during the F1 we thought it was about time to get ourselves over there and have a look. We got the train across and then switched lines to get ourselves up to Marina Bay Sands - maybe the most recognisable building in Singapore at the moment. The huge shopping centre that is across the road from it, along with the walkways along the water, the exhibition centre, and the floating Louis Vuitton shop that is a bit of a feature peace out of the front of the shopping centre! With there being so many luxury brands in there as it being such a massive place I guess they had to do something to make themselves stand out from the rest! Several months ago, back in maybe Thailand or Laos I had downloaded the TripAdvisor app got singapore, Becky was flicking through the things to do/ attractions section and found a rather interesting result at about #7 on things to do, it was called 'Ultimate Drive'. This company let you buy 15, 30 or 60 minute drives of either a Ferrari F430, or a Lamborghini Gallardo around the city - I had to do it ever since I saw it! It may not be 'good value for money' but it is one of those things I had been thinking about over and over, and had decided that I was going to do it. We went out found their office and after walking straight in had booked myself a 30 minute drive which would go along areas of the circuit and then out for a few km return along the motorway in the Ferrari! It was all booked on a sort of spur of the moment basis, although I knew I wanted to do it. It was a case of just going in, signing all the forms and doing it, it was booked for 11am Thursday! With the drive in a Ferrari now booked the time had somehow got around to maybe 8:30pm already, time for dinner! After having so much great Indian food in Malaysia we had a craving for it, so decided to head to little India - you would think that would make sense for the best food! We got the train an then walked for 10 minutes, it must have been about 9pm by now as places looked to be closing so went into pretty much the first place that we saw customers in. The food was nice, but just wasn't up to the Malaysian quality we had in Kuala Lumpur - we had a chapati meal along with another smaller meal and split the lot between us. It was good but just tasted a bit like it was something we may get at home and was a stereotypical touristy meal from little India, rather than the kind of food we had been finding in Kuala Lumpur and returning to over and over again - it did fulfil the craving to an extent though luckily! After having the food faulty quickly we pretty much walked straight back to the station as there really wasn't a lot going on around the area, all the shops were closing and tidying up for the night so there wouldn't be anything we would want or need around there now we had been fed, after all it makes sense to was back earlyish ready for the driving tomorrow! Well that was the plan anyway, 10pm or so and Becky is in the shower - we hear quite a quiet noise outside the room, it definitely sounds like a fire alarm. 10 seconds later I open the door and hear the automated message of this is a fire please leave the building, great! Becky grabs some clothes, I grab a phone and money and out of the room we walk to the end of the corridor and towards the fire escape. Straight down and we arrive outside, we walk into the lobby as the staff haven't seemed to have left - nobody really knows what's going on but hardly anybody seems to be downstairs either. Over the next 10 or so minutes people start coming down, we couldn't believe how long it had taken people to get from their rooms! A further 10 minutes or so pass and the staff are saying its a false alarm and it would be fine to go back to our rooms. So, barefoot still we walk back up the fire escapes to the room, no power in the room but at least the lights in the hallways are on. Sit in the room for a while hoping the power will come back on, 10:45/11pm no power so back down we go. Staff are giving bottles of water and glasses of juice so make sure we grab the lot - funny how the only seem to be going to the older people and ignoring the us as the couple if Asian people our age. 30 minutes or so and they say power should be on, nothing for us. The managers have now appeared at the hotel after no doubt getting a call about what is going on, they are going around talking to people - a good hour later maybe and he finally comes over to us. He was a nice enough person and explained what was going on, although I'd figured it out myself already. Another bit of waiting, and we finally went back to the room, on the way he asked if there was anything we wanted, so we got ourselves a buffet breakfast each in the morning that should have been $33 (£17) each! Just a shame it had to happen the night we wanted the early nights sleep after missing the bus the day before! Thursday morning and we woke up all excited about not only having our free breakfast, but that also I would be driving a Ferrari today! Up we get and head down for the breakfast, we had been wanting a luxurious buffet breakfast for I don't know how long so it was amazing that we finally could. Annoyingly we didn't actually manage to eat that much before feeling very full, I guess we just weren't used to eating a lot at all let alone in the morning. After a selection of pastries, fruits, bacon as toast we headed bak upstairs to grab my passport and make our way to Marina Bay Sands to drive the car! The weather when we had woken up was amazing but now it was getting progressively darker by the minute, so much so that about 10 minutes before we went to leave it started to rain, great! I had been told when it was booked that if it is called off due to the weather then just give them a call or turn up and then we can reschedule it! Making our way back down there on the underground we couldn't see how the weather was, then we arrived! The weather was awful, a load of rain coming down and now I was just hoping that they will reschedule it for later rather than going out in it. We walk straight to their office/ shop and he confirms that I'll now be going out at about 3pm, perfect. So we walk out to look at the car, just as we get outside a Scottish guy gets out and says how amazing it had been, even though he had been out in the rain. All along Becky had been saying similar to me, that it was so much money for something relatively small - but she knew if I did it and then she didn't that it would be a major regret! 5 minutes later we walk back in, another one booked to go right after me that afternoon. The guy even gave us the 10% discount off both this booking and my one the night before - as they offer 10% off for more than one booking! We just needed to keep ourselves busy until 3pm, we had a few small things to do which would be fine whilst the weather was ****. We headed back to almost the hotel, went to the post office to buy ourselves a bit big box and find out shipping rates to send a few things home that we had collected over the past 5 months. Back to the hotel room as we started the job or carefully getting as much into this box as possible, in the hope to keep in under the 5kg weight but also to give everything the best chance it had of not being damaged on the way back home! Every 5 minutes it seems as though we are checking out of the window for the weather to improve, it is slowly! Even though it is way too early we decide to leave as we are just waiting around making ourselves get anxious about driving, so grab the passports and driving licenses and off we go - get the train back down to Marina Bay Sands. This time when we get back up to see daylight again we see just that, no rain chucking it down out of very window as we had seen that morning. Back along to the office and they tell us they are running a bit behind but that doesn't bother us. We just sit and wait whilst everyone walking outside look at the pictures of the cars all over the wall and probably wonder why we are both sat in there. Before we know it they come back in and say it's time for us to go out, well for me to but we both go out and get pictures whilst they sort the paper work out. A couple of pictures each and 2 minutes saying what does what, sign a little form saying you know what the speed limits are and there I am ready to go. Driving a Ferrari is like driving the easiest car in the world, everything feels brand new even though this one had done over 50,000 miles - almost all around this same loop I imagine! I pull away very slowly as I am unsure on how much of a jump the throttle will have, and there is none it pulls away just as if you were driving any normal car around town. Out we go and get ready to do a U-Turn, I have no idea on the turning circle so wait what seems like an age but I guess only 20 seconds until there is a huge space and I can swing around and start to head off towards the city centre, and the remains of the track. We both decided to get the video they offer, partly to remember it from that and also so I could stick my camera in the car both times. From what I do remember it was down towards the Fullerton, and driving along a part of the F1 track backwards down towards the Swissotel, at the time I really don't think I was taking in where I was at it seemed surreal. I then made my way around the town for 10 minutes or so before going along a few KM each way down an expressway. Although the cars look so big and awkward to drive they really aren't, being semi automatic with paddles he said not to worry about changing down gear but it made such a nice noise when it revved automatically when you did change down that I made sure I did it myself all the time! The car felt just as happy driving along at normal town speeds just as it felt equally happy when you accelerate a tiny bit and traffic just vanishes around you. I always ended up holding it in gears rather than letting it change up, I did have to get my money's worth with the fuel after all - and nobody likes it when someone drives past in a supercar in a high gear so its quiet! I can't really write down what it was like, the 30 minutes when from necrosis to immediately being us to it. To after thinking I could have gone so much quicker in places - but it wasn't just about going as quickly as possible around the town the whole time. Although there were chances to, and the guy sat next to me made sure I knew where I could even though only those few minutes earlier did he ask me to sign that piece of paper to keep everyone happy! The best straight section was towards the end heading back to the Marina Bay Sands, far less traffic than the express way and I'm sure anyone around that area is used to the cars doing the same as you can see that you are almost back and your time, for now at least is almost over! I got back and it was time to swap over, Becky jumped in looking a bit nervous and was off only a few moments later whilst I stood chatting to one of the other guys that works there about the Gallardo they have, had a sit in there and a look about. As much as I would have loved to also drive that it had to be there Ferrari as it has always been about Ferrari's, the guys who run the business also said they prefer the Ferrari as the Lamborghini is much heavier and more sluggish around town with the 4wd. I go to sit inside and 30 minutes later am back outside when Becky returns, equally as happy to have just done it but straight away wanting to also go out again and do exactly the same now you know the route and the car feels a bit more familiar and comfortable, but we can't - that's enough Ferrari driving for this trip! Happy with our days achievements so far we thought it seemed fit to carry on the expensive day by heading over the Raffles and having a drink in the Long Bar - it goes on the list of I've now done it, yes there may be better views in Singapore or cheaper drinks in the city but I guess Raffles has the history with it that it is the thing to do. In we walk after having a brief look around and sit along the bar, the floor covered in monkey but shells as is tradition. We order 1 Singapore sling, a Yard of Tiger beer and some nachos as we had seemed to miss out lunch with Ferrari excitement. The Bill of $87.1 SG was about £45 but then it was the experience of being there so along with the rest of the day money wasn't an issue. We made the most of being there, I ate the monkey nuts constantly whilst being in there just because I could and we must have spent a good hour in there, the constant stream of people coming in and getting a table. It was a nice place to be, we got some food and it was nice to have just for somewhere for a reason in particular rather than just to where we thought it looked good! We hadn't realised until now but Raffles was also just a few minutes walk to our hotel, in the opposite direction from Orchard road. So to save a tiny bit of money in this busy day, and to just not have to walk to the underground we walked back to the hotel. I think once we got to the hotel we decided to go for a swim and make use of the jacuzzi, after all we were paying enough for the room we may as well use everything that is available. The jacuzzi was amazing, as you would expect boiling. The pool not so, now I'm sure it was 20+ but we found it cold, just shows to how we have changed in the things we are used to. After being in the pools around Asia so far, and in particular the sea in Malaysia this was just too cold, the sun had not been out beaming down on it all day like usual when we jump into a pool. We still must have spent a good hour in the jacuzzi then going and having 30 seconds in the pool before quickly going back to the warmth! With no watch or phone with us it was a bit of a guess at the time - it was later than we thought by the time we had finally got out and we ha to get ourselves down to china town. Not only did we want to have a look around china town but also to eat there, we didn't think this would be anything of a problem at about 8:30/9pm. It inevitably was. Off the train at the aptly named china town station and head past a few of the really touristy restaurants where the food in 10 times the price we know it should be, and arrive at a huge 3 story open-air shopping plaza. Food is on the top floor but there isn't the noisy you associate with eating, there is hardly any noise - not good. We walk up to find a good 80% of the stalls have the shutters down, 15% of them are chucking buckets of water to wash away everything and anything the surrounded their stalls, leaving 5%. 5% of which thankfully were open, when I say open I mean closing but would chuck a bit of food together for us to eat. We got a can of Fanta each from one stall and then waling past one of the only open stalls we had a little look, sat on the table outside the front of it there was a nice woman preparing some food for the next day - she recommended we get these dumplings type bun come wonton something or others, we agreed as we are hungry after all and hope they are good. We paid maybe a dollar, maybe a few, I can't quite remember. What I do remember is the little tower of baskets that came out was amazing, we ate the top basket of 5, thinking that was them all I had a look in the next layer presuming it would just be water keeping them warm, nope it was another layer of food - amazing! Wanting to order more we knew we couldn't as they were well and truly closing now, but the china town meal turned out nice - maybe not as filling as we had liked but we had the quality that we wanted! Walking back around china town there was a maker area we didn't bother with as it was 100% tourist rubbish that we knew we wouldn't want, having a look around the buildings and adverts both old and new we ended up deciding we needed to get a pudding. And what more authentic a pudding could we get than a white chocolate and pink champagne magnum ice cream, Chinese sounding, I know. After seeing adverts for these for so long it was the perfect way to conclude our luxurious lifestyle that day. Not before having another walk around the town, having a Ferrari drive past us whilst we made the way back, back to china town station! Friday, this is it. The last full day in Asia. After so long thinking it will never arrive at that it was miles away, it has got here! The weather is back to as we had become used to, sunny, humid, hot, bright - ideal basically. Not so ideal though when you have planned a day of walking around seeing the parts of the city we had left to do, there were still several areas around town that we had not made it too but that can be for next time! The first stop of the day was to get the umbrella from reception, I can't remember if we took it as we thought it may rain or we took it to keep the sun of us, either way we had an umbrella with us! Umbrella in hand it was off to the Fullerton hotel via a walk back along the way we had driven in the Ferrari the day before, just typical that this is the perfect weather today but never mind. We arrived at the Fullerton and went over the bridge, outside the suitably grand hotel was a couple of Lamborghini's and a Ferrari. These seemed to be getting as much attention as the building, and I guess it comes as no surprise that I had a good look around too. There were a couple of cool statues around the bridge that we made sure we got pictures of before walking around in the shade for a while. We made our way around the Fullerton and along towards the merlion park that looks out towards the Marina Bay Sands complex, as well as straight across to where we sat on race day! There were swarms of Asian, primarily Chinese tourists I think that had to have there pictures from every side of this little pier over the water, with every different background possible. We were happy with just taking a few pictures, having a stand and a look and then making our way off. There were a number of nice looking restaurants around the area but annoyingly the couple that we had decided looked nice did not take bookings so it was pot luck whether or not we would get a table for that evening, great. Still having Clarke Quay to visit and it already being about 4pm we made out way across town via the big multinationals bank buildings to head towards the general Clarke Quay direction. Past the English pubs, the Korean and Vietnamese restaurants - and we arrived. Mum and Dad had been to 'Brewerkz' so we only had a short walk around and then made our way there to get a drink - quite a choice from the menu, the drinks we chose were nice enough but a bit weird for me - I prefer something without all the hop-iness and flowers and whatever else they put in to make stuff sound interesting. After an hour or so of sitting, drinking and looking we thought it was probably about time to move on, and head back towards the hotel. Managing to refrain from eating the food at Brewerkz was quite some challenge, but we wanted to enjoy our dinner later that evening rather than some food now and then food again only a few hours later. Drinking over and done with it was time to cross the river again and walk along the other side, so many cool looking small breweries and eateries around but we had our plan and wanted to stick to it. Walking along in rush hour traffic was busy, nowhere near Hong Kong though - I seem to compare everything to that in terms of volume, the mass of scooters and motorbikes in Vietnam or the sheer unorganised chaos of Bangkok or Phnom Penh. Even though you may think Singapore would be busy like these other cities, it just isn't really. The high price, ridiculously high price of car ownership just seems to really work in controlling the numbers of cars driving about - well apart from the Ferrari's, Lamborghini's and Maserati's! We walk past museums, kitchen and interior design shops, you can tell we are in the part of town where the serious money is. Although I guess that is most of the centre of the city! Back to the hotel, and I think we may have gone for the same swimming pool and jacuzzi mix like the previous day - it had been such a hot day, similar to the heat we had over the race but rather than being sat in it we spent the whole day walking around in it this time - I'm really not complaining though! Freezing then boiling in the pool and jacuzzi we finally make ourselves get out so as to not eat too late, arriving at maybe 8/8:30 was a good time for us. After having not spent a lot on a meal for pretty much the whole time we were away it was time to spend the money, and we had decided on a nice Italian restaurant and gone for pizza! The place was nice, coincidentally quite high on TripAdvisor we noticed afterwards - and the food was good, the service was annoyingly slow though. The staff were more interested in topping up wine on other tables on the Friday night than they were in serving us, good job I wasn't planning on leaving a tip. Anyway, we had a nice pizza between us, a decent sized salad ate and were on our way to make the most of the evening! We knew that we had to be back at Marina Bay for the light show they have at 11pm - it was another one of the free things that we thought we should do whilst we were there but had never got around to doing it even being there for a week! On our way we walked back past Raffles, along past a rollerskating club, a nice sort of complex built around a church looking building, restaurants and bars etc. But no time to stop as we need to make our 11pm schedule - down again to where there had previously been the entrance we had always used to the track, passed the Swissotel - at which point another Lamborghini Aventador drove past us. Considering the price of them alone, nevermind with the charges making them cost almost double it was nice to see so many of them, we must have seen every colour you could get them in - nobody would want to go to all that expense of buying a car for someone to have the same colour as them! Back to walking over, anyway! We got past the hotel, saw the Lamborghini - I think we saw a Gallardo as well actually and then got down to one of the huge underpasses that during the F1 was one way, in there were a load of people over in one corner giving each other dance lessons. To think all the people in England their age are too yet trying to break stuff and complain they haven't got anything to do, use your imagination and deal with it! Becky wanted to have a stand and a watch for a while before I dragged her off to continue the walk along the water, past the Esplanade where there was an outdoor stage with some music, another stop to watch and listen. More walking along the water, to have a guy and his daughter going alongside us on what can be described as a wheel with a footrest either side of it. Electric motors, gyros, more magnets and whatever else was combined into this cool thing - at a guess he was probably another Lamborghini owner. Stopping to let me take some pictures and look a bit more closely at it before there were off on their way again. We finally made it around to Marina Bay Sands, after so many stops along the way - a Friday evening in Singapore was such a good time to walk around and see everyone out doing whatever they do in their free time! We were walking through the massive shopping centre trying to get back to the waters edge, by the floating Louis Vuitton shop when the time turned 11. We were only a few minutes late so had a seat with everyone else to watch the smoke, lights, bubbles and music with everyone else. It wasn't spectacular but was nice to watch, with images being projected onto the smoke, lights and lasers! 10 minutes or so later and it was over. With a mass of bubbles coming out of the small towers either side of us before retracting away as if nothing had happened! That just made it all the more real for some reason that Asia was nearly over, I've referred to that a lot right - depressing, I know. Starting the walk back, a good 40 minutes or so probably to the hotel, passing the most of the scenic buildings that you will see on a postcard from Singapore, back down behind the Bay Grandstand that was now all in the dark and looked slightly out of place in the middle of the city - if it wasn't for the floating football pitch in front of it then it would look even more strange. And back to the hotel, I think maybe seeing another Ferrari or several on the way - it got so normal that I couldn't really keep up! Saturday, officially our last Asia day 22 weeks after we had arrived in the baking heat with trousers and a jumper on! Knowing that as we wanted to have a walk around one last time that would then mean I would end up landing in New Zealand freezing with shorts on - but that I could deal with, maybe. It was weird, Not scary, not strange, nothing. Just not feeling like we are doing anything different today. Normally the way we move from place to place has been by buses or trains, a couple if times by a plane but that has kept us in Asia. Tomorrow we will be in New Zealand. You know the routine by now, we have to finally get up and out of bed and this place has been one of those places hardest to leave. The bed is so comfortable, like at home and what I'd do for a day just to stay in bed all day. After sending a box of stuff back to England we gained a lot of room and bags are feeling lighter. We've packed everything up, an got our day bags ready for the plane and down to check out. Next job after checking out is to write our post cards, were sat with them In front of us and both of us have blank minds about what to write, as well as that I think we need hand writing lessons soon too with spelling lessons. So we do apologise for the sloppy grammar! Off to orchard road today, it's close to the hotel and means for an easy day in air con. First on the look out for something for lunch, both of us in the same frame of mind of just wanting to eat everything. We came across a nice bakery and got some nice focaccia bread to share. We wonder in and out of the shopping centres, wanting to buy things but not wanting to spend the money. Thinking we should buy stuff to go to New Zealand with but also thinking we won't need it. Becky wanted a new jumper, and had found some, but just felt weird buying for the sake of it so didn't. Then we wonder into H&M, a plain cheap jumper and well this was clearly a good thing. It's boiling outside and no way do we need to buy jumpers, but it's colder in New Zealand and we can't get our heads around that. We will be painting too, so a cheap jumper that wasn't bothered about too much with was just easy if it was cold. Well after all that debating, walking around we needed a proper lunch. We wanted a MOS burger as a good bye to Asia, both of us were just hungry and we got bored of searching for our food so we walked down to the basement of a shopping centre and found a place to eat that sold.... Fish and chips, yep our last meal in Asia is fish and chips. I know we were searching for a burger but they are just nice fresh, different burgers. We came across this little stall and it smelt like proper fish and chips so we have it a go. It was good, it was cod but that was just expensive. After a while we fancied an ice cream too, so went to one of those big fancy ones to get a scoop of chocolate ice cream with cookies and god knows what else. Now this may have just been a normal weekend in Singapore along Orchard Road but it was just like being at a supercar gathering - remembering we were spending a lot of time in shopping centres we still managed to see a fair few cars from what I can remember: On Friday; 3 Lamborghini Aventador's Ferrari 599 3 Lamborghini Gallardo's 2 Ferrari F430 McClaren MP4-12C Saturday in about 10 minutes; Lamborghini Aventador 2 Gallardo's 2 Ferrari 458's 2 Ferrari 599's 2 Nissan GTr (not sure why I remembered these) Lamborghini Murcielago Mercedes SLS AMG That doesn't include any of the multiple Bentleys, Range Rovers, Porsches, Top Spec VW/Mercedes/BMW's etc as they weren't worthy. Not does it include Rolls Royces as they don't interest me, and I forgot to count Maserati. Well after that hard day out car spotting it seemed it was soon time to walk back to the hotel. We got a big drink on the way back from 7eleven, sat in the lobby using the Internet, before we head off to the airport. We got our bags, and walked over to the metro station before we stood on a busy train for about 40 minutes. We arrived and got changed, a quick freshen up and ready to check in with about 25kg of baggage between us. I think the lightest I've ever had a bag/suitcase. A walk around the duty free, a tuna baguette to share and then a walk down to our gate. (Becky writes from now on) After a while of waiting and wasting time, it's time to get comfy in our seats for the next 7/8 hours. A few films lined up, and it's just a case of waiting for some dinner which was actually quite nice. Soon after food Ed started to fall asleep after we both watched hangover 3, however I really wanted to watch iron man 3 so stayed up to watch that. I couldn't really sleep at first and then soon got tired. Maybe got an hour or a little more if I was lucky before they came around, switched the lights on and started to dish out the refreshments as we weren't due breakfast till our next flight.