This is the first of my posts while away. It will be done on my iPad, so I am lacking some of the options available on my computer, but I can go back and edit this a bit later. Hope it works ok!
Anyone who has travelled with me will know that my day often centres around where I might consume the next meal. Travelling makes that even more exciting.
The food adventures began on day one, 1 July 2013, when mum and I scored an upgrade to business class on the Sydney to Singapore leg of our adventures. The Neil Perry Rockpool inspired menu offered onboard made decision making difficult. Mum and I decided to order something different for each course and share 50:50. Entree was a lovely beetroot, rocket, goats milk feta and walnut salad for me, and a flavoursome Asian beef vermicelli salad – lots of fresh spices. Mmm! The main was a lamb shank with a white bean mash for me and blue eye with lentils and carrot purée for mum. The lamb just fell off the fork – lovely. Dessert was a cheese plate and fresh fruit. I was impressed with the quality of the food, and the portion sizes were not massive, however they were substantial enough that we were not hungry for the rest of the journey and the only thing we ate last night on arrival into Singapore waste pile of peanuts in front of us at Raffles while mum enjoyed a Singapore Sling.
Day two’s food highlight was probably the joy of my fave post-run recovery snacks: a skim milk hot chocolate and some sort of cakey-thing. When I returned from my 20km run I first showered and replaced some much depleted electrolytes (sweat?? I literally wrung it out of my running gear before hanging it to dry). Then downstairs to the lobby cafe in the hotel, Tuxedos, for their hot chocolate and a sugar brioche bun. Mmmmm! Felt completely restored after that!
Day three, the last day in Singapore, was topped off by me finding a breakfast treat I had discovered and enjoyed last time I was here a few years back: coconut jam toast. There is a small chain of coffee stalls in Singapore that make this delicious toast. It is just brown bread sliced horizontally and toasted, then they add a small amount of butter and the coconut jam. Soooo good! I scored one while waiting for our tour bus to take us to Singapore Zoo. I have no photo of the toast for you I am afraid – I was consumed way before that even crossed my mind.
I really love flying, and over the years I have been fortunate enough to fly business class many times between Australia and Asia, Europe, the USA and South America. For this trip with my mother I had booked us in premium economy and requested upgrades to business for each leg. You never know til you are at the gate if you are successful or not. However, the night before we flew out I received a message from Qantas that we had been upgraded to business class from Sydney to Singapore. Woohoo! This may well be the only upgrade we get, but I had been crossing my fingers that it happened just once, so mum could experience that style of travel once in her life. I think the photo below indicates she didn’t mind it too much. : )
We arrived into Singapore sometime after 7.30pm, and mum was amazed at how massive and clean Changi airport was. Something she saw replicated elsewhere in this wonderful city. Day one was simple recognisance, oh, and the previously mentioned Singapore Sling. Handily our hotel (the Carlton) was literally across the road from Raffles, so it was very easy to tick that box!
Day two saw mum exploring the city by herself while I knocked off my 20km run. I think she spoke with every fourth person and some, and came back with a new camera (‘a rash purchase’). We met up in the lobby and headed out to Sentosa Island on the MRT system before catching the cable car across to the island. We walked around a lot and checked out the stunning butterfly enclosure, but I think the highlight was hearing mum’s riotous laugh when she stuck her legs into the pool for the fish spa. My mother is exceptionally ticklish, so I wasn’t sure how she would go with hundreds of tiny fish eating all the dead skin off her feet. It was entertaining to say the least!!
Day three was spent at Singapore Zoo in the morning where we had breakfast with the orangutangs. Such magnificent animals. The Singapore Zoo is pretty spectacular. The few hours we were there only touched the surface. Other than the orangutangs, I think one of the highlights was when we tried to work out where the lemurs were and one just walked right on up to us as if to say ‘I am right here. How can you not see me??’
My running schedule had me doing two runs while in Singapore, a 19.31km run, and a 6.44km run.
Run #1: I slept til I woke instead of getting up early. We had not ended up getting to bed til close to midnight Singapore time (2am Melbourne time), so it was sensible to let my body take the rest it needed. I purchased a fuel belt to use for much of my running while I am away as I cannot guarantee that I will have access to water along my routes. It turned out to be a very good idea! Running in the tropical heat has not been something I have done for some time. Goodness knows how much I lost in fluids during my run, but I did try to consume as much water a possible. The fuel belt also has a couple of pouches in which I carried one of my peanut butter Gu and half a protein bar. My route took me down to the river near the durian shaped Esplanade theatres, and on reaching the river, pretty much opposite the Marina Bay Sands, I headed left (east) and followed the water. I passed the Singapore Flyer – a much more enticing option than the white elephant in Melbourne, and ran past an immense amount of development of new sporting stadiums. Apparently one of them will be the largest in Asia. Impressive. My turn around point was out near the Leisure Park at the Stadium – a place I am very familiar with from my last visit to Singapore when my partner was working on an ice show down there. It was funny to have wound up at that same spot just by following the river and my nose. It was not a super swift run. I knocked of the 20.07km in 2:00:06. So pretty much 10km/hr. Slow and steady in the heat and humidity!
Run #2: Day three early morning run. I awoke about 3mins before my 5am alarm and popped on my running gear. It was still dark outside, but what a difference to running at this time of the day in Melbourne! No gloves, no beanie, no long sleeves. Only a running singlet and shorts. It was in the high 20’s. Yay! This morning’s run was the ‘scenic run’, as I wanted to take pictures to show some of the route. I hope they have come out ok below. I took the same route as the day prior, but obviously a lot shorter! I love watching cities wake up, and I definitely saw that in Singapore this morning, even saw some fellows fishing before sunrise. A nice recovery run at about the same pace. 6.57 kms in 39:13.5.
Next stop: Dubai!