Thursday, March 31, 2005

Yiyi's First Trip to Singapore - Day 1

As you all know, we went to Singapore last week. It was Easter holiday in Singapore, so we decided to take the opportunity to drive down to Singapore and visit the Singapore Zoo. VEP (Vehicle Entry Pass) is free of charge on Singapore public holiday.

On Thursday we departed from Mami's hometown in Malacca. We planned our journey around noon as Yiyi normally takes her nap around this hour. If she sleeps in the car, Mami would have some peace and quiet, and I can concentrate on driving. But before we hit the highway, we decided to go by the trunk roads and went to Malacca town. Our destination: our favourite Popiah stall in Malacca town, just in front of Madam King's shopping.

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Each popiah (non-halal) is about 5 inches long and 3 inches in diameter. It has taugeh, egg, bean curd and turnip as fillings. And most important, chunks of pork lard and oil. Sorry, no photo, busy eating mah..hehehe.... Want to know where the stall is? From the one-way road in front of the Tan Kim Hock shop (the famous shop selling local products and snacks, keropok, biscuits, durian cendol etc), go straight (keep to your right) until the traffic light, then make a U-Turn to the next road. Madam Kings is almost towards the end on the right.

And you know, that popiah saved us a few hundred bucks. Why? On the highway, I was having a piece, while driving. It was dripping, the fillings were falling onto my lap. So I slowed down a bit and concentrated on eating my popiah. (Yeah, don't try this OK? I'm a trained professional ;)
And just a couple of kilometers in front, there was a police road block. If I didn't slowed down, I would have joined that Singaporean Harrier who high-beamed me and zoom-passed me at 160km/h.

We reached Tuas Checkpoint (Second Link) at about 6 pm. Just nice. The VEP is free from 5pm to 2am, and on public holidays, Saturdays and Sundays. Not many vehicles were going into Singapore, but the traffic going out of Singapore was horrible. These were Malaysian who is working in Singapore, most of them on motocycles.

Once in Singapore, we headed straight to the Hotel. We stayed at The Gallery Hotel, a hip and trendy hotel by the river side. But I was having problem locating it. My mobile roaming wasn't working and we couldn't call the hotel for direction. Armed with a Singapore map, we drove around Singapore like a headless chicken. An hour later, we managed to identify the road and by following the map, we finally reached the hotel.

We like the room but we didn't like the hotel. The room is beautiful and clean, the decor is fantastic. We got a king sized bed and a baby cot as requested. Yiyi went "Wow! Wow!" non stop, running around excitedly. It was the first time we saw her behaved this way. Me and Mami were laughing seeing her like this.

What we dislike about the hotel was the location. It was a quiet area with no entertainment, no shopping and nothing to see, except the stinking river. And to get to our room, we need to take 3 different lifts just to get to the 5th floor. Breakfast - so so.

At night we drove to Chinatown, about 3 minutes drive from the hotel. There were street pedlers and shops selling chinese stuffs, and chinese food restaurant. And there was a particular street which was closed for traffic and there were food stalls aligning the side, selling rojak, mee, soups, BBQ seafood etc.

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Back at the hotel...

Mami (in the shower) :Papi...What are you doing?

Papi : Oh..Nothing...just admiring the view of Singapore.

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The view from our room.
The lap pool is just next to our room. *wink wink*

To be continued...the trip to the zoo..