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Saturday 21st August - Singapore
By Claire
Monday, 23rd August 2004 04:34

The hostel provided breakfast for us: eggs (scrambled or boiled); toast with jam or peanut butter; fruit and salad. I was impressed. We headed into town and walked past Raffles (only two days to go!) and checked the dress code for the restaurants, then we hit the shopping malls. I think we managed about two hundred and seven malls today, it was exhausting. But we were searching mainly for a non-Lonely Planet guidebook and some shoes for going out to dinner. Every bookshop stocked every LP book possible and it was begining to look bad. We had a brief moment of hope when a shop stocked all the Rough Guides except the one we wanted, but we had no luck. We made the tough decision to by the LP guide after all. And Mikey bought some shirts, I found some shoes and we even bought some chocolates to eat after lunch.

Laden with an impressive array of smart-looking shopping bags we found a Chinese cafe in one of the shopping centres and sat down for a while to eat. I ordered Sechuan beef noodles and, typically, with my first meal with chopsticks in a foreign country, they gave me soup. But I managed alright in the end. Made a bit of a mess though. The portions were huge, and we were too full to finish the weird deep-fried and boiled cakes that we had for pudding.

Our shopping completed, we tried out the MRT (Mass Rapid Transport) underground system. A friendly customer service guy explained that buying a travel card would be better, and he showed us how to use it. He also told me that the weird curly language that was on every sign along with English, Chinese and Malay was Tamil, which is cool. Very pretty script.

We took the MRT to a cable car station near the harbour and took a round trip over Sentosa island and onto Mount Faber. It's the third-highest hill in the country at 300 feet tall. We walked around the hill in the heat for a while, trying to find a nice panoramic view of the country, but there were too many trees in the way. We decided to try out the night safari near the zoo later tonight and to drop all our shopping back at the hostel first, but once back in the hostel, at about 7pm, neither of us wanted to go out again. We watched some Olympic table-tennis on televsion cos a Singaporean girl was trying to win the country's first medal for forty-four years and that was about it. A very tiring day.

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