Sunday, 4 December 2011

And just like that, Hurricane Jenny departs Singapore bound for the sub-continent...

Team Taylor Deportation/Repatriation Countdown

Days left in Singapore: 19

Days left until arrival in the Queen City: 26

I've decided this is the "stock photo" of Singapore, as this is
the place I make EVERYONE pose with Jenny.  Think of it as
the "Tower Bridge" of Singapore - minus the thousand years
of history...
And a good (but rainy - just like EVERY OTHER DAY for the past 7 weeks) Sunday afternoon to you all from across the globe after another GREAT DAY in the Lion City.  The Bull is officially a bachelor again, having just kissed Muffin Puffin goodbye a scane 30 minutes ago and put both her and Lady Catherine in a taxi bound for Changi Airport.  Honestly, I cannot BELIEVE how quick her 72 hours in Singapore went, but the good news is that she'll only be gone 12 days before returning next Friday.  Considering that's half the length of time she was Down Under, I'm confident I can persevere.  However, talk to me after 3 or 4 sleepless nights, as right now I'm basking in the glory of TWENTY-THREE HOURS SLEEP across the last 3 nights, almost eclipsing the total hours slept in the SIX DAYS prior to her arrival.  I think that I now have some understanding of how parents feel when their kids go off to college and then come back for a long weekend.  You are so thrilled to have them home and love every second that you have together, but it all goes WAAAAAY to quickly AND you find that you're trying to fit so much in that you barely get a chance to breathe and just chat.  But despite the rush, you're just glad to see the light on down the hall (figuratively speaking).  HURRY HOME SOON, MUFFIN!!!!!
D & D - tell Charlotte that Jenny and I hung out with Mr.
Moon yesterday!!!  For the record - his face TERRIFIES ME.
This weekend was a terrific whirlwind of laughter and activities, beginning with our post-Boomerang shuffle down the Singapore River.  When I left you, we were about to head to Boomerang for breakfast.  However, upon a noon arrival (and having already had 2 cups of coffee), the Bull opted for a full Boomerang Deluxe pizza.  After all, I don't have many opportunities left to consume that, so I've gotta make it count.

It was then a stroll along the river, leading us under the Esplanade Bridge and past the Theaters on the Bay, where I was planning our first photo stop of the tour:  the signing of the Wishing Spheres!  I was excited about this, as it was one of the things we did in 2010 when we stopped in Singapore house-hunting. I was leading us to the "signing area" when a woman actually approached us and and began explaining who she was and what she was holding.  I blurted out, "Hey, look - it's the wishing balls!", at which point she blushes a bit before explaining that the "wishing spheres" bring a sense of unity and hope to the Singapore community.  She then asked if we wanted to sign, at which point I went on a proper photo shoot to document the girls in action.

Back for a repeat with the Wishing Balls, baby!!!  I mean, um,
the Wishing "Spheres."  Oops. 
Just tell me they are recycling this water - that's all I'm asking for.
It was then across the Helix Bridge (and past some REALLY dodgy "Christmas deer" statues - the eyeball staring at you was TERRIFYING) and into the shops at the Sands, where we checked out the (finally completed) ground floor.  It was really cool, especially the "swirling waterfall fountain" that poured into the indoor river (complete with a gondola, of course) along the mall.  The whole thing had a "Dubai-meets-Vegas" feel to it, and dare I say that, between the cold air blowing and all the Christmas decorations, I found myself getting into the spirit a bit.  But I simply must ask the question:   HOW MANY PRADA, HERMES, LOUIS VUTTON, JIMMY CHOO, TRUE RELIGION, SEVEN JEANS (for all Mankind, of course - because denim IS the key to humanity),  AND OTHER UBER-RICH stores can one place hold?  Seriously - TWO-STORY Louis shops?  Pappas - you would have been in HEAVEN in this place.  And let's be honest - I'd never even HEARD of most of the shops in there (shocking, that).  KJ - something tells me you would have been able to give me a fact about every store in that place, but Team Taylor was clueless.

After getting lost about 20 times, resisting the gravitational pull of the casino, and FINALLY breaking down and asking for directions, we eventually made it over to the MBS hotel, where we requested the elevator pass to head up to Ku De Ta.  Catherine's been to Singapore twice before, but not since the MBS was built.  Consequently, it was time to take her to the 57th floor, for a look at the infinity pool so recently conquered by Liz and David.  This was mine and Jenny's 5th or 6th time on 57, and EVERY OTHER TIME has been on a day of blisteringly brilliant weather.  Yesterday afternoon at 3:45, however, was the exception to that rule.

Dare I say that, amidst all the A/C and decorations,
Team Taylor was feeling quite festive this weekend!
We stepped off the elevator and into an absolute DOWNPOUR.  Now this by itself wouldn't have been so bad, but add in the fact that it's an Equatorial thunderstorm AND the fact that we're over 600 feet up in an open air (with a roof at least) bar, and you get a MUCH different feeling (Mum - fret not, as we were obviously totally safe - even it Cath did NOT agree).

The storm was EPIC.  We watched lightning streak across the sky for the better part of an hour, and the thunder was some of the loudest and longest we've heard in Singapore.  Add in the fact that we were basically AT the cloud level watching buildings (and the city for that matter) completely evaporate into a gray fog, and you've got a recipe for a fascinating hour.  And I am happy to report that the weather eventually did clear up, at which point we were treated to some spectacular views of the harbour and the city.  The rain had cleared the atmosphere a lot, and you could see all the way across the straight into Malaysia and some of the surrounding highlands.  VERY cool.

Post-downpour - and already back to 7,000,000 degrees.
It was then back to the house, where Cath had a bit of a kip whilst Jenny and I started laying out and organizing things for the movers, who are coming in 2 weeks.  We know that it will be manic between now and then, so we were using every second we had to get things ready.  Cath was up at 7:15, and by 7:45 we were out the door and headed for Dempsey Hill and our first "farewell" to a favorite restaurant here on the island - Tawandang Brewery. 

The evening was just fantastic, as we had Emma, Dan, Money, Muffin, Cath, and Sarah all present and accounted for (although Sarah wasn't eating or drinking since she had the Standard Chartered 10K this morning).  The food was stellar as usual, and all those lager towers never stood a chance.  Ah, such a good evening.

We then wandered down to another block (there are 40 blocks in Dempsey Hill) and hit a bar called In Fusion.  This place was a whiskey bar, and it was fantastic save one thing - THEY WOULDN'T SERVE YOU WHISKEY DRINKS.  I asked for 2 different whiskey drinks, and both times they went away smiling and then came back with "I'm sorry, sir - we don't have any of the ingredients for that."  I got a little snarky on the second one

Sammy the Bull (StB):   "It's just whiskey, cucumber, sugar, and lime juice - you don't have ANY of that in a whiskey bar?" 

Non-whiskey Drinking Bar Dude (NwDBD):  "We have no lemon, sir.  Lemon is the most essential ingredient in this drink."

StB:  "But it's not listed as an ingredient IN the drink.  Can't you just make it without the lemon."

NwDBD:  "No, sir.  I am afraid we cannot.  Plus we do not have the other items."

StB:  "So really, even if you HAD lemon juice, you couldn't do it."

NwDBD:  "Yes, sir."

StB:  (looking at menu) "I see 8 other drinks here.  Can you do any of them?"

Big D holding court over the whiskey menu.
NwDBD:  (smiling...OF COURSE) "Perhaps you would like just straight Scotch?  We have shots starting at $30."  (A @#$#ING SHOT FOR $30?  NAH, MATE - I'M GOOD).

For the record - I settled on a beer.

Drinks aside, the atmosphere was AWESOME, as we were outside in this garden setting, and a brother tandem was ROCKIN' the mike for the better part of 90 minutes.  They were fantastic, and I was truly impressed by a) their harmonies and b) their skill on the guitar.  But that was all the warm-up to the highlight of the evening, when they said, "We're gonna do an oldie now.  This is called Country Roads."  Needless to say - Jenny and I were BLASTING it out.  I should also point out that we got plenty of Bon Jovi, John Mayer, and others.  We even got a little "Friends in Low Places" and the chorus to "Sweet Home, Alabama" - QUALITY.  It should be noted that, if the look on her face told the truth, Emma Tullett was in her own personal hell.  I asked the band if they knew any Death Metal, but they weren't quite up on the Megadeath-Panterra-Opeth scene.  Oh well, better luck in 2012.

It was then back to the palace, where we managed 8 hours (that's right, count 'em - EIGHT) of sleep before waking up this morning, booking the Mumbai hotel, getting the girls packed, and then having a late lunch at Wine Connection.  The Bull and Striker settled for a coffee, as today is the start of a SERIOUS AFD run that could extend as far as 8 or 9 days - it could be this week's sign that the Apocalypse is upon us.

The featured activity was a brief walk around Fort Canning Park before heading back to the condo, showering, and then bidding the girls farewell.  The depart in about an hour - and so begins the next great adventure of Jennifer Elaine Tacy Taylor.  I can't WAIT to hear these stories.

The jet setters - India bound.  HAVE A BLAST, GUYS!!!
Muffin and Cath - BE SAFE AND HAVE SOOOOOO MUCH FUN!!!!!!!!  Avoid anything that mentions "ghost chilis" or "naga peppers" - they will most likely be some scheme by BJ Freidinger to burn your esophagus out.  Seriously - I LOVE YOU, MUFFIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  HAVE A BLAST!!!!!!! 

As for working out tonight, the Bull is on the fence and feeling pretty lazy.  I'm thinking it's time for a few CSI's (Season 8 is now in the house courtesy of the lovely and talented Adeline) and maybe a bit of reading before (dare I hope) sacking out early tonight in prep for the week.  That will mean 3 straight days without running, but as I had a good 4 miler on Thursday and got back under an 8 min pace, I think that will be fine.

Okay, that's all the news that's fit to print.  Chat tomorrow!


Sam and (chillin' in Changi airport, about to head to the subcontinent for the adventure of a LIFETIME - for both her and her digestive system...)Jenny (and Catherine)

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