After what could only be described as a seven hour thirty minute dream flight on the upper deck of Singapore Airlines new A-380 we arrived Changi Airport somewhere around 11pm. Surprisingly none the worse for wear. Magic happens when you combine the already highly regarded Singapore airlines staff with the worlds first flying city, but be warned, do this once and you'll be spoiled for life.
Newbies to Singapore we passed through customs with the speed only afforded parents towing three beautiful daughters and were greeted by Semi, our jolly (if dentally challenged) Cheuffeur. Stepping through the doors the humidity literally takes your breath away. In the four steps from the door to kerb I would swear that I dropped at least two kilos.
The Intercontinental Hotel surpassed our expectations from the moment we arrived. Singapore itself is beautiful in a Cairns, Whitsundays kind of way and is possibly the cleanest city in the world. Of course we then made it our mission to find at least one piece of graffiti. No, no luck there. Cigarette butts? As if. The shopping options are overwhelming however with Suntek City holding pride of place. We (yeah
right! the girls thanks) managed to restrain ourselves for our return trip. We did the night safari tour at the zoo, which despite the moans of overtired kids was great though its amazing how darkness, poetic licence and a guide with imagination can make even the stillest of rocks become an African Rhino!
The morning following the safari we decided to venture into Little India to explore all things gold! Two taxi's were called from the hotel and Kerry and the twins hopped in one and Jess and I in the other. The day got dramatically worse from that point on! Kerry's taxi dropped them at the street market and mine at the mega shopping market (mufassa). After spending 20 minutes wondering where the hell they had gone, I moved into sheer panic mode! Jess and I did laps of the shopping centre, went to the security office to have them paged, and jumped in a cab to another taxi stop. My panic turned to terror when the security officers face just dropped when he realised where Kerry and the girls were probably dropped off!
I assured Jess, that Mum is smart enough to realise
that the safest option would be to return to the hotel. It was in that moment that I realised I should probably do the same thing! We jumped into what was probably the slowest taxi in the world and arrived back at the hotel. Arriving at the room we were confronted by still no Kerry but a note reading “AT THE POOL”!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” (yes there really were that many exclamation marks). I arrived at the pool to see the girls swimming happily and Kerry sitting nearby (not so happily). Apparently Kerry's adventure became pretty damn frightening, when she found herself surronded by a dozen Idian men. The phrase "how much for the little girls" is somewhat comedic on TV when tinged with a John Cleese accent, not so much so when stranded on a street corner with them stroking the precious ones golden curls.
The twelve hour flight
We booked an overnight flight from Singapore to Rome (12.40mins) departing at 1.00am based on the logic that we would all sleep through, wake in Rome fresh and ready to go and save on a night accom (big selling point).
After an hour the kids were snoring (having made beds
out of the emtpy seats). Kerry and I attempted to sleep, but this proved difficult sitting upright and being kicked repeatedly by sleeping kids! Twelve hours forty we arived in Rome looking something akin to the zombies in the Michael Jackson thriller clip. BUT, we were in Rome and in true Italian style we were greated by Marco our Zegna wearing hair jelled, Mercedes driving..................TAXI DRIVER. Yep, you read right. Two piece suit, silk tie, black leather overcoated TAXI DRIVER!. He took the bags, offered guided comments on the way and even offered to let us use his phone to contact Guido our land lord (yes, I said Guido).
What can I say. We love this City. It oozes class, culture and indescribable charm that catches you before you know you've been caught and Don't get me started on the coffee. Micheal, I now know why you only drink esspresso!
Anyway, must go, I can hear the bells from the Basilica and that means its time for coffee down on the street.
Singapore was founded as a British trading colony in 1819. It joined the Malaysian Federation in 1963 but separated two years later and became independent. It subsequently became one of the world's most prosperous countries with strong international ...more info