Finally made it to Singapore
Trip Start Dec 27, 2012
9Trip End Jan 07, 2013
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We ate chili crab omelets at the JW Marriott Crossroads Cafe before taking off down the infamous Orchard Road. I marveled at the ornate Christmas decorations as we darted in and out of shops along the way. When we reached Fort Canning Park, Rufio led the way through the marvelous gates. We spent the next hour marveling at the beautiful grounds and historic fortress, while narrowly escaping a brief afternoon shower as we reached Raffles House. We took in the spice and herb garden before exiting toward the Chijmes shopping complex. Although it was the Saturday afternoon before a holiday, much of the shops and eateries were closed, so Rufio expertly led me toward the Bugis district
At this point in the day I was already feeling the effects of jet lag coupled with overall sleep deprivation and heat exhaustion, not to mention the day had grown late and we were much past lunchtime. The sleep and hunger were overwhelming in the frenzy of the hawker center. I followed Rufio down row after row of laksa, pig organ soup, fish ball soup, congee, etc. I felt Rufio was growing impatient of my indecision to settle on a stand. I did know that I wanted, rather needed, an iced coffee, so we stopped long enough for a jovial Thai woman to pour me a rather lukewarm brew. I realized I needed to settle on something quickly, so I doubled back toward an Indonesian BBQ stand. Rufio chose the adjacent stand and we ordered and scooped up an empty seat as soon as possible. We enjoyed our meals, although I was quickly introduced to a uniquely Singaporean institution - sancrosanctity of paper napkins. So sacred, in fact, that patrons of hawker stands must bring their own packs of tissues or suffer with curry sauce all over their hands and mouth until finished. I later learned of an act called "choping", wherein the aforementioned packs of napkins are placed on crowded hawker center tables to reserve a spot while searching the stands. Luckily a sink with soap (but alas no paper towels) was nearby, so I scurried to it when I finished to wash away the remnants of my ayam meal.
After our late lunch we ventured back to Orchard Road for showers and the nightly executive lounge cocktail hour at the JW Marriott
Fort Canning Park