Monday, September 03, 2007

Hit the ground running --

We arrived yesterday morning and had to prepare for my goddaughter's party in the afternoon. We bought her gift when we were in Singapore so I just had to giftwrap it.

We also had to unpack and re-bond with Seth. (Thank God for coffee.)

I bought some really funky clothes for Seth when we were in Singapore and I wanted him to wear one of them to the party so I laundered them when we arrived in Manila last Thursday.

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This outfit is from LIFEbaby -- an amazing shop for children. They had really fun pieces for kids and I wanted to buy everything but I couldn't afford it. >_<

My goddaughter's party was fun. Seth got his first taste of pork bbq (and he loved it!)

* * *

So, Singapore --

Day 1: August 27, Monday

This trip to Singapore was all about shopping. My one purpose there was to refresh my wardrobe because a lot of my pre-pregnancy clothes either don't fit or aren't suited to chasing a 14-month old.

Johann crumbled a little and wanted to do some tourist-y bits like riding the DHL balloon or going to Sentosa or going on the Night Safari -- but I quickly got him back on track.

We arrived in Singapore on August 27. We were able to save a bit of money by taking the MRT to the airport instead of a cab or a shuttle service. When we arrived at the hotel (Peninsula-Excelsior), we were pleased with the service and quickly got ourselves checked-in.

This was where the niggles started -- when we entered the room, my head started pounding. The room didn't smell right. A quick call to the front desk confirmed our suspicions -- we were given a room on the smoking floor. We went down immediately and requested for a different room.

(Note: Always specify in your reservations that you want a non-smoking room.)

They told us that another room on a non-smoking floor would be available at around 3pm. It was only 1215 so we asked to leave our bag with the Concierge and went searching for lunch.

We decided that this was our one splurge meal and we settled into Uma Uma Men -- a Japanese restaurant very near our hotel.

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They had a conveyor-belt sushi system and everything looked good. I ordered their Tar Tar Chicken Don (Chicken with Tartar sauce over rice) and Johann had the spicy ramen.

We got a table beside the conveyor belt and were very impressed with the amenities. They had sesame seeds, spices, pickled radish, etc. I really loved the sesame and I ground a generous amount of it over my meal. (It makes a difference, trust me.)

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We also got a plate from the conveyor because it looked so yummy!

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After lunch, we went to Raffles Shopping Center to visit Comics Mart and ask for WOW Fires of Outlands. They didn't have it yet but were expecting it to arrive within the next few days.

We browsed through the other shops inside Raffles. Many of the stores were having their end-of-season sale so I was very happy to see a lot of items with discounted prices. ^_^

When we returned to our hotel, they had our room ready. Our card key wouldn't work so I had to go back down again. We finally got it open and were dismayed to see two single beds. We couldn't even move the beds closer because there was a desk in the middle that had the switches and whatnot.

After freshening up, we went to Citylink and Suntec and just walked around. There were a lot of new stores and I was happy to see many of our old favorites still operating.

Dinner was a selection of fried stuff from Old Chang Kee. ^_^

Day 2: August 28, Tuesday

Day 2 was Orchard Day. It was also Johann's book buying day so our first stop was Borders. (Johann loves Borders more than Kinokuniya in Ngee An)

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They were having a 3 for 2 promo and I was able to get Nick Hornby's Polysyllabic Spree and Dedication, the latest from the authors of The Nanny Diaries. The freebie we got was Susanna Clarke's The Ladies of Grace Adieu.

After 2 and 1/2 hours of browsing and buying, we left Borders. It was raining so we had didn't really get to go around Orchard. We ended up having lunch at a food court (I forget which one). I had the char siew pork with rice and Johann had Char Kway Teow (fried noodles).

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After lunch, I got a chance to visit Topshop and got a really nice blouse (a bit of a splurge, but it was worth it) and Iora, where I got a majority of my new clothes.

We went to Kinokuniya after that but, by then, we were encumbered by so many books and bags so I really didn't get to do much browsing. I found a bench in a corner and waited for Johann to look through all the Fantasy shelves. I did manage to find Jane Yolen and Adam Stemple's other Rock 'n' Roll Fairy Tale, Troll Bridge.

We left Orchard after that and returned to our hotel. We rested a bit and went to Funan IT Mall, which is just beside our hotel. They have a branch of San Bookshop there so we checked out their titles. I like San and I get a lot of my books from them. It's a very unique store which offers books for sale or rent. You could choose to sell back the books that you've bought from them at a lower price. Used books are sold cheaper and those are the ones I look out for.

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It's also a great place to get older titles at lower prices. ^_^

We saw this in Funan.

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It's a dippin dots-type vending machine. ^_^

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After Funan, we went to Marina Square (which is also nearby) because I wanted to check out the Crocs store. I got a pair of Cleo and Johann got a pair of Crete, which he wore immediately. ^_^

We had dinner at the Marina Square food court. We tried their claypot rice meals.

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It reminded me of dolsot bibimbap, except it wasn't spicy.

After dinner, we crossed back to Suntec and Johann got ice cream from Andersen's.

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We got pistachio, which is Johann's favorite flavor. Andersen's is a bit pricey at $4 a scoop but it is worth it. ^_^

We noticed that a lot of Singaporeans were carrying similar boxes so we followed them. A donut shop had recently opened in the same floor as the Andersen's kiosk and a lot of people were lined up to buy donuts.

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It's apparently a big deal because the shop had to limit purchases to two dozen per person.

* * *

A side note about Andersen's --

On our one free day in Manila, we visited Sebastian's at Podium and tried out their ice cream. I got the Hazelnut Cookies n Cream and Johann tried Dublin Fudge.

It is AMAZING. Johann said that it was even better than Andersen's.

Now, if only I can bring it home to Iloilo.

... Singapore story to be continued.


jymdrn said...

cool! ice cream from a vending machine :b

Tarie said...

I'm loving these Singapore posts. :) I'll go on to read the next one now... And I should check out Sebastian's in Podium...