Day 7 – Cebu to Singapore. Stat.
Highlight – Love staying in a little boutique hotel in Chinatown that used to be old row houses.
Low light – My room is a postage stamp (smaller than Hudson in NY, uhu) and my desk has an itsy bitsy spider infestation. They are everywhere and the desk is millimeters from the mattress. I got to the hotel after midnight so I decided to sleep it out. Um yeah, I was awake every hour with the creepy feeling of spidys all over my body. Good times.
Day 8 – Singapore – Fun Run & Furniture Show
Started my day with a great run through Chinatown. I opted for the “back alleys running tour” and the decision was rewarded with amazing sights. An elderly man’s tiny flea market table, a back alley barber shop, the back door of every restaurant, back alley laundry, back alley toilet, back alley brawls. Can’t wait for tomorrows run!
I filed a complaint about the extra guests in the my room and the hotel graciously changed my room. Horror story ends there. One more notch in the belt of “scary stories from the road”.
Great work day at the furniture show. Inspiring and productive. Don’t ya think?
Day 9 – More furniture show. After work I spent a few hours strolling the tiny alleys of Chinatown. In love with Club St. area and all the row houses brightly painted or softly distressed with age and stories. Charming cafes and restaurants support the row houses and are like a walk through an enchanted village.
I sipped on an herbal iced tea while considering 1000, under $10 cheesy souvenirs that I could buy as future dust collectors. Jade carved stamps, horoscope chopsticks, folding fans, paper lanterns, teapots, mahjong sets and little buddha icons. I left with my dignity. Found a food market instead. Far more gratifying!
Another great run through the city. A cold shower. Clean clothes. Simple pleasures. Tapas and sangria for dinner at Sabroso in Holland Village. Didn’t you love the turkish dates wrapped in Iberco ham, grilled and then drizzled with lime? Too yum.
Day 10 – Tsunami in Japan. I watched in horror. I am still in disbelief. I am ever grateful to be in Singapore. You have no guarantees, no promise of another tomorrow. We only have now, this moment, this space on this tiny every troubled planet we call Home. Our Mother Earth is not healthy and she is letting us know. Will we hear and act before we are all washed away under the sins and abuses we have heaped on this planet?
I spent the evening at Ku de Ta on the 57th floor of the Marina Sands Hotel. Yup, on a boat in the sky. It seemed like the safest place to be.
Day 11 – Singapore to Ho Chi Minh and back to Singapore
I arrived in Singapore only to find out that my visa application letter is invalid. The Vietnamese do not take this lightly. They put my butt on the next flight back to Singapore. DENIED!
That was a first. Yes, it did hurt my feelings. Yes, the immigration official actually did feel sorry for me and my big droopy eyed face I was giving him. How do I know?
He escorted me onto the plane and to my biz class seat. I did not pay for this return flight to Sing Sing. He told me that the country of Vietnam was picking it up in hopes this experience does not prevent me from returning with proper documentation. I toasted him as the plane pushed back.
Exiled in Singapore.