Monday, May 30, 2016

Singapore: In the dark

We travelled down to Singapore on Saturday for an extended weekend.  For the 1st time we stayed in the Bugis area, which was a very good base for exploring nearby neighbourhoods.  And for pricey Singapore,  a great deal at the Ibis Bencoolen

We walked into Little India, a mere 10 minute stroll from the hotel.  Lots of shops and vibrant colours and smells (as much as you get in Singapore)  The Mustafa centre was a new place for us.  24 hour shopping with everything under the sun – from groceries to jewellery and everything in between.

In the evening I had booked us in for a meal, which I gave no details to Andrew about – in case he had any pre-conceptions about.  on the day I explained where we were going so it wouldn’t be too much of a shock for him.  We dined at Nox – Dine in the Dark   This is a dining experience exactly as it says in the restaurant name – in the dark. 

We arrived at the restaurant and were given a briefing about what to expect.  The meal is served in a 100% dark room, there would be three courses with four small dishes in each course.  Our waiter for the evening, was blind.  So hands on the shoulders of the person in front of you, Andrew and I were lead into the dark, and up the stairs to our table.  We were seated and told to keep our wine glasses beside our water glasses – so the waiter knew were things were when he served each course.  We fumbled our way around the table checking where things were.  The 1st challenge was filling our water glasses, meanwhile we could hear the sounds of other diners on the other side of the room, but truly you could not see a thing.  There were three tiny red lights from the smoke detectors, but otherwise 100% black.  Sometime I just closed my eyes because it made no difference whether they were open or not.

And then the appetizers were delivered.  We had been advised to eat the bowls in the prescribed order 1-2-3-4.  Of course Andrew had not listened to that instructions and went 1-3-4-2 which made it hard when I was saying “is this pork” and he is saying “no I have beans”  It was a disconcerting experience not to have the visual stimulants to tell you what your were eating.  A little bit of Andrew’s meal might have ended up on his shirt, and maybe some water also went the same way.  But at the end of three courses we came out remarkably unscathed.  Our waiter led us back out of the room and down the stairs where lights were gently in.  Back in the reception area we were taken through the 12 small dishes we had eaten.  It was surprising how many we had no idea what we ate, while other were quick obvious.  The food was delicious and the experience fantastic- highly recommended

On Monday we took the MRT out to the Southern Ridges walkway and spent 3 hours in the heat – but it was very worthwhile.  We walked on raised canopies above the “Hort Park”, down through the Hort Park, over the Henderson waves and past the cable car to Sentosa Island on Mt Faber. Hort Park was opened in 2006 using land returned to the State from nearby  unused naval shipyards.  It has been turned into a research areas with prototype glasshouses, themed gardens and lots of places for people to see and learn more about gardening.  If we hadn't been in the middle of a 10km hike with rising temperatures and beating sun, we would have explored it more.


Note the amount of perspiration on the red t-shirt of Mr Andrew.  He was exceedingly disappointed when we went to the nearby Vivocity mall for lunch there was no alcohol served.  And we had the worst Char kway teow known to man for lunch – we both left more than 50% uneaten


It wasn’t Andrew’s day when it came to alcohol.  For dinner we returned to Little Arabia (near our Dine in the Dark restaurant) and chose Beruiti Grill.  The food was very good, but it was traditional and didn't serve alcohol.  as we wandered home there was plenty of night-life and people enjoying themselves.

On Tuesday before our afternoon flights back to Laos, we walked around Fort Canning Park.  The spice garden was interesting and the message at the reservoir was clear – no matter what language you spoke.

















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