Stop 4

Trip Start Jan 29, 2008
Trip End Apr 30, 2008

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Monday, February 18, 2008

Well, it's now the 12th of March and I can't believe it's been so long since I updated this thing - I thought I'd at least started Australia!  Well, it's a long way to remember back but I'll have a go....

We arrived in Singapore late at night and went straight to our hostel.  Singapore is generally amazingly clean and beautiful, but what I didn't tell the girls was that I saw the biggest rat I've ever seen right outside our hostel door as we went to check in.  Honestly this thing was the size of a wombat (which I now know from personal experience are somewhere between the size of a cat and a average size dog.)  And it was fat.  Apparently the local residents had little altars outside of their houses and workplaces on which they leave offerings to the gods.  The rats gratefully accept and get very big and fat.  Even the dozens of cats that were wandering around didn't try their luck trying to catch on of those big boys.  I also saw the biggest cockroach I've ever seen but I didn't mention that either.

We only had two days in Singapore and we'd downloaded the top ten things to do to make sure we saw the main sights out of what we wanted while we were there.  We were up early the next morning (the hostel itself was actually fine once you got over what was living outside) and headed straight for Little India.  Apparently it's a good idea to visit it early in the morning before it gets really crowded but to be honest I think we were there too early, there was very little atmosphere and not much going on around the stalls. 

From there we moved out to Santosa Island.  It's a manmade island and it's quite obvious - everything is pristine, not a rock out of place and the manmade beach was exactly the same.  We went to the Zoo for the night safari, which was quite an interesting experience, albeit all these supposedly nocturnal animals looked quite happy to sleep their way through the night as much as they did the day.  The lions did however make an effort and you could feel them roaring as well as hearing it.  Also, we were driven round in a little train thing and some of the animals were loose and we drove within inches of them which was quite good.  Obviously it didn't include tigers or crocs, but I have seen a big Tapir up close and personal.  It was a good experience, but probably not one I'd repeat again. 

The next day we decided to have a day off from the whole backpacking experience.  We've travelled so much most days or had something booked to do or just general sightseeing and it's unbelieveably exhausting.  So we spent the day watching dvd's in the hostel.  Sad but true.  It was fun!
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