Wednesday, 3 August 2011

A blast from the Londontown past - VISITORS FROM BRITAIN, BABY!!!!

And a good evening to you yet again from across the globe after another GREAT DAY in the Lion City. Okay, since you've just had a healthy dose of our Taiwan travels (and YES - I realize that I've still got to give you 4 more days of "fast times in Formosa"), I thought I'd switch things up by recapping what turned out to be an EPIC visit from 2 of our London mates. Truly, if the Bali trip kicked off what I'll affectionately call the "Cracker Tsunami Asian Adventure," this past weekend flipped it into overdrive.
That's right, sports fans - Little Armenia's (aka Glendale) finest, the price of the L-B-C and the 2-1-3, the man, the myth, the Glendale Gamecock, Jason Wade hit the Sing with his fiance Rebecca like a Class 5 Hurricane, and the city may never be the same. I know that I sure won't...
Seriously - talk about utter ROCK STARS. These cats showed up at 7 PM, and the first thing we notice is that poor Rebecca is in crutches! That's right, THE NIGHT BEFORE HER FLIGHT, she fell getting out of the bus and BROKE HER FOOT. Now, had it just been Singapore they were visiting, this might not have been that big of a deal. But given that they are now in BORNEO, I really hope they are okay. But given how she rolled around this city, I ain't skeeeered.
We knocked back 1 cocktail and then were ready to make some magic happen. 30 minutes later we were at Red Dot (shocking, I know), drinking Green Beer (except Rebecca, who took down her first Singapore Sling), and waiting for the man who can only be described as the German Mike Lake on steroids - Rebecca's friend Sven. This guy was AWESOME.
So we take a few down at Red Dot, enjoying the view and the weather, and then we wander over to Boat Quay, where we absolutely CRUSH a nice meal of Chinese. We ordered chili crab, which everyone seemed to quite enjoy (which is a good thing, because that damn crustacean was $102 SGD!). At this point, I just figured that Jason and Rebecca would be exhausted, but no, no...that was just foolishness.
I am literally about to say, "Well, you guys want to go home and get some rest?" when Sven says, "So where are we going to party? We need to celebrate!" And, well, the juggernaut just took over. 20 minutes later we were at the Screening Room (the same rooftop bar that Paula had taken us to our first night), where we drank until about 2 or so and then caught a cab home. I was reminded again how cheap taxis are in Sing Sing - 15 minute rides were about $4!!! We went to bed at 3:40 that night (after a discussion with the greatest quote EVER - "I will NOT call your mom KoKo - that is just STUPID", and I was just in SHOCK. Everyone else who's ever come over has just passed out shortly after dinner. However, this was just a taste of things to come...
It took an alarm clock to rouse me at 10:45 the next morning, and I was bloody EXHAUSTED. I had run 13 KM right before they arrived thinking that they'd make it an early night, so imagine the state I was in after all the bar hopping. All the same, by 1:30 PM we were BACK AT BOOMERANG for the second time that weekend, although Muffin Puffin and I opted for lunch this time. It was 3 PM by the time we finished, and then we did a very touristy (and very fun) activity - the open top bus tour!
We selected the "Hippo tour," and it was great. First we had a boat ride down the Singapore river (complete with a viewing of my Merlion, baby!!!!), and then we hopped out to catch a bus around the central city. The weather COULD NOT have been better, and shy of the snippets they played of 19th Century Cantonese Opera (WOW - talk about "Who strangled the cat..." it was actually REALLY fun and interesting to be a true tourist in the city. In truth, Jenny and I now wish we'd done this on our first weekend here, as it would have helped us so much with getting oriented in the city. As we rounded corner after corner, we just couldn't believe how close some stuff was to us (stuff that we ALWAYS took the metro to because we just had no idea which direction to go). We ended up taking 2 separate tours, finally getting off at Raffles hotel for a wander of the grounds and then a drink at the Long Bar (no Sling for me this time - I rocked the Heine. Hitman, look what you've done to me). That place really is cool, even if you're getting rooked on the drink prices. And when you consider that I had about a BAGILLION peanuts, well, I think it all worked out.
We then wandered over to another new destination for me - Lau Pa Sat. This hawker center, quite possibly the most famous, is right in the center of CBD and sits underneath an iron grate brought from Scotland in 1894. It runs 24 hours, and in the evenings they block off an entire street to set up plastic tables and cook 50 cent satays (which are SO GUUUUUUUUUUUUD...peppy cheekies). It was simply DELICIOUS, and I left there ready to almost EXPLODE. Sven wanted to rock another club, but this guy simply didn't have it in him. After all, it was a workday in the morning, and I knew we'd have two more evenings in front of us.
Monday was an insane day at work for the Bull, but the evening was terrific, as we got up to Dempsey Hill and had dinner & drinks at Tawandang. And at the risk of offending the Red Star beer gods at Red Dot, I must confess that the lager at Tawandang definitely tasted better than the Kolsch, Ale, Pilsner, or Lager down on Boat Quay. However, I do still love my green beer...
After dinner, I was ready to call it (keep in mind it was 11:15), but Sven says, "So, where are we going? One Altitude, right?" and my jaw hits the floor. Jenny and I passed, but Jason, Rebecca, and Sven are ready to ROCK, and so we give them a key and let them have at it. We go home and pass out, only to be woken up at FIVE FORTY-FIVE IN THE MORNING when they come back home, 3 pubs and some GREAT stories later. ANIMALS!!! The funny thing was that 10 minutes later I was up and dressed for the gym - that would have been a classic "ships passing in the night" story.
Tuesday was Rebecca's birthday, and so we met them at P.S. Cafe for dinner. I had some AMAZING lasagna, and Rebecca actually PICKED UP THE ENTIRE BILL! Apparently it's a German custom that the person inviting the group for dinner picks up the bill as a thank you for being there and spending time with them. HOW COOL IS THAT? So yeah, that was the start of a GREAT night...but then it got eeeeeeeeven better.
We then rolled over to the Marina Bay Sands, where Sven knew a guy who knew a guy who knew a guy who got us on a guest list and even got us a reserved table on the 57th floor. That's right, baby - Team Taylor was rockin' it old school in the bar KU DE TA! This place was just EPIC. It was a PERFECT night with an amazing breeze, and the city could not have looked more beautiful. Throw in some champagne, views of the infinity pool, and a great night of laughs, and you have a recipe for a perfect evening. The only problem was that I had to leave early (Wild Card - 8 AM meeting - really? Killin' me...), but Muffin Puffin stayed and carried the banner. She carried it so well, in fact, that she woke me up when she crawled into bed at THREE IN THE MORNING. That's especially amazing when you consider that Jason and Rebecca had a 5:30 AM wake up call for a flight to Malaysia - OUT OF CONTROL!
We had an absolute blast, and I'm SO EXCITED that we'll get to see them a final time before they head back to the Smoke. Enjoy Borneo guys!
Okay, that's all the news that's fit to print and all the blogging the Bull's got in him for the night. Ko-ko! Ko-ko! Chat tomorrow!
Sam and Jenny, Co-presidents of the "Koko is for Kids" Fan Club

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