Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Singapour it's not, thank goodness!

Our second port and the second day we did it on our own. Randy has been acclimating himself to the hotter weather by sitting on the deck a lot and by walking Deck 7 (3 times around is a mile) at 4 in the afternoon. I think he’s nuts. On the other hand, he IS seeming to not even notice the weather. But he never seems to notice the weather in Tucson, either. By the way, Tucsonans, if you think we are getting away from the heat, think once more: it may be hotter in Tucson (or not, today’s what-passes-for-a-newspaper, the four, 8 ½ x 11 sheets of USA Times, says the high in Phoenix of all places, was 87 [31]!) but in Singapore it is 90+ and 90% humidity. I’ll take the very dry oven of Tucson ANY day!

Doing the city by ourselves (no guided tour) has its benefits, but I think we will mostly do tours in the future. We did go on the Singapore Flyer, a giant Ferris wheel—but they just call it a wheel; copyrights, I presume—that takes about 30 minutes to make a revolution. The capsules are about 20 feet long and about 10 feet in diameter. They are mostly glass (without, thank goodness, a glass floor) and the capsule rotates as the giant wheel rotates so you are always vertical. Great views of a city with some pretty spectacular architecture. The science museum looks like a giant lotus blossom and the Marina Bay Sands hotel has three towers connected on the top by an enormous slab—no, much, MUCH bigger than a slab, it looks like a enormous anchovy perched on top of the hotel—that supports a garden and a negative edge pool. Try to imagine swimming in a negative-edge pool about 50 stories above the ground; it gives me palpitations just thinking about it!

While looking for a place to have lunch we got lost—yes, LOST—in a shopping center. It is a completely subterranean shopping center so we had no outdoor light to help orient us. At least that’s the excuse. We did see a lot of Exit signs but when we tried to exit, the door had a sign that said “This door is alarmed” (I wanted to say, What scared it?) and having heard horror stories about how little it takes to put one in jail in Singapore (chewing gum comes to mind), we elected not to try the alarmed doors. After walking and walking and stopping for sustenance in a Chinese restaurant, we finally found the way out.

Emerging into the sunlight we were so unable to determine where we were that we attracted the attention of two police officers (uh-oh! Just what we were trying to avoid!) who also didn’t know where we were. Saved by a passing elderly man who was able to tell the police where to go, we headed off to buy the stuff on our shopping list: a new battery for Randy’s camera, a lens cap for mine, and a new hard drive. Just what one wants to do in an exotic city. But Ryan (yes, Ryan) from the Chinese restaurant had told us about electronic nirvana so we found everything in one place.

On our way back to the ship (by the way, our ship, the Sun Princess, was only the second ship to use the new terminal) we stopped to watch a cricket game. Cricket was described to us as baseball on valium.

Singapore ferry

Some of the way-cool architecture in Singapore

The capsule on the Singapore Flyer

Flat Stanley and Randy at the entrance to the Singapore Flyer

Marina Bay Sands (L) and Science Museum (the lotus-shaped building on R)

A wedding photo-shoot we happened upon

Flat Stanley enjoying a Singapore beer

Pam and a Singapore beer

St Andrew's Cathedral in downtown Singapore. Nothing special, I just like the building

Flat Stanley about to go for a ride on the Singapore Flyer

Flat Stanley looking at the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore

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