Note: I’ve added some more pictures to the “Indonesia: A Bali Adventure” album. My plan is to create and add pictures to two new albums sometime soon: “Indonesia: Lombok and the Gili Islands” and “Singapore: Three Days.” Keep your eyes peeled, but be patient… I’m heading to Kathmandu in a few hours and can’t promise I’ll be able to post pictures anytime soon!
- Friday, 8 April: Mosied around Padang Bai; got a new book by trading two; relaxed; chatted with English girl at the guesthouse; went to have lunch; Wayan picked me up with his wife and two kids and we drove to Denpasar, stopping at a batik showcase so I could pick up a few things; went to Dwi’s office to pick up her key, then to her apartment, where I relaxed for a bit; Dwi and I stayed in, chatting and relaxing.
- Saturday, 9 April: Went on a few errands with Dwi; met up with her CS friends and checked out two fancy hotel/resort places; Dwi and I went out for seafood on the beach like our first night; then back to her place to pack and head to bed.
- Sunday, 10 April: Up early; got to airport early; flight to Singapore went smoothly, bought two books at Denpasar’s airport (one fiction, one “Top Ten” for Singapore); arrived and followed Couchsurfing hostess’s instructions to her apartment, which took me awhile; met Jo, math tutor and Chinese CS host; went out for late lunch/early dinner, local food (char kway teow, noodles, brown sauce and cockles; and Hokkien mee, noodles, white sauce and seafood mix) which was delicious; then off on my own to explore Orchard Street; met up with Jo and her friend at a sheesha place on Arab Street.
- Monday, 11 April: Very lazy morning, slept in, read book, hunted for tickets to Israel online; eventually went out for lunch with Jo at a Chinatown market place for kaya toast and half-boiled eggs; also had a cheesy raisin bun; then on my own, explored Chinatown for the rest of the afternoon; headed back to Jo’s apartment late and relaxed for the evening; bought KTM-TLV ticket, finally.
- Tuesday, 12 April: Slept in; out to lunch with Jo; explored Singapore riverfront quays and merlion park; took Singapore River cruise; lunch at Clark Quay; wandered around Ft Canning Park for a bit; went to Little India and wandered; used internet cafe for a bit; back to Jo’s around 8pm; out to dinner with Jo, chili crabs!
It’s hard to believe that in five hours, I’ll be flying to Kathmandu. Well, truthfully, I’m flying to Delhi, there to wait four hours and then fly to Kathmandu. My three and a half days in Singapore have been fun and busy and educational. I’ve roamed Chinatown and Little India, taken a bumboat ride on the Singapore River, eaten no end of local foods and visited the National Museum.
I’ve been lucky enough to have an amazing Couchsurfing hostess, Jo, who is friendly and eager and bubbly and intelligent. She is a math teacher and somehow, you know right away upon meeting her that she’s a teacher. She has been generosity itself, accompanying me to all sorts of new culinary delights and giving me pointers on things to do and see and try in Singapore. We’re on a bit of a level: both love to read, both distressed with the state of the world and our inability (thus far) to make a difference, both trying to figure out how to remedy that situation in some small way. Jo is someone I truly hope to bump into again soon, because I know she’ll continue to be an amazing person.
So, what foods have I been trying, you ask? Well, I’ll tell you: chili crabs, laka toast, carrot cake (which is not carrot cake as Americans know it), all manner of Chinese foods, chicken and rice, cockles, and a few other dishes I’m sure I forgot. Truthfully, I’ve stuffed myself these past few days!
And now, in five hours, I head to Kathmandu. Some of the emotions going through me now: nervousness, excitement, fear, thrill. I’ll be met at the airport by a representative of Mountain Monarch, the company I’ll be trekking with, who will take me to my hotel. My friend Jan, a seventy year old woman who has done this trek before, will join me later in the day (her flight arrives several hours after mine). We’ll spend two or three days in Kathmandu before heading off to being our Everest Base Camp trek. I have no idea what distances are involved, but I’m sure that it will be a challenge!
If I don’t post soon, please don’t worry. I’m not sure what the connectivity is like in Kathmandu but I’m sure that the trek will keep me moving enough that I can’t post during it. I’ll be sure to post an update as soon as possible!
Cheers and blog at y’all later!