After breakfast our first achievement of the day was walking to City Hall station and get a tourist 3 Day MRT pass and then we entered the world of underground travel in Singapore! My first attempt landed me not really where I wanted to go, so instead we checked out the magical Merlion and his hordes of devoted selfie stick carrying tourists:
We toyed with the idea of walking over to the Singapore Flyer (that giant ferris wheel), but it was already close to noon and mid day heat / sun were not very inviting, plus it is still very hazy (and I do not have much hope that this will change, but who knows) and we postponed this for later, and instead went back to the train and got out at Little India station, which is right at the Tekka market, where we lucked out 2 nights ago, and this time we went straight for the Sup Tulang, which took a while to emerge from somewhere (interestingly we were served, which was very nice). We shared our table with 2 local Indian looking gentlemen who showed us how to get to the succulent bone marrow, which Julius described as ‘a bit icky, but tasty’, while I was glad that there was plenty of tomato, onion and cabbage in the fairly sweet curry sauce. Garlic naan from a neighbor stall was a great side dish.
After more or less washing off the sauce from our hands and faces, we succeeded walking north into little India, discovering that this is a much better source for ‘cheap Chinese crap™’ shopping than Chinatown was. I.e. sunglasses, uniformly priced at 10SG$ there, can be found in little India for 1, 1.90 or 2.90 for the premium models 😉 so, we splurged and got a new pair each. Julius keeps quoting Doc Brown from ‘Back to the Future’ when he puts on his.
We moved on, passing many offers for cheap apparel and plastic-y toys and went straight to Mustafa Centre, a huuuge 24/7 department store which is said to have everything (of course, what I was looking for they did not have), 5 stories of lots of stuff .. we did not spend too much time, just enough to see that this is nothing like Pantip Plaza in BKK (from the description I read, I had thought this would be the case), but still very interesting and I would not mind having such a place in Hanoi. But then Julius’ batteries were really getting low and with the power of subway travel we went back to the hotel for a mid day break.
Having done some research I selected our next food stop, which was Sumo Salad at the 313 Somerset department store. The department stores on Orchard remind me a LOT of Japan and there are actually many of the same Japanese stores around. Way too much shopping and eating .. on occasion you cannot simply cross the street, you are guided under ground where you simply have to pass more and more glitzy and glamorous shops. Anyways, salad first:
Then back on the train and off to Newton station to discover yet another hawker center: Newton Food centre. Lots of stalls again, but lots of the same, this time there was quite some chili and pepper crab on offer (not cheap), but also several stalls had grilled items and so we ended up with BBQ stingray, mutton and pork satay and oteh (grilled fish cake). All very good and pleasant outdoor seating among friendly people.
Now I really wanted to walk some more and we took the train back to Orchard station, got out, started walking west, because Julius suddenly had the idea he wanted to see a Toys’R’Us (and google quickly showed me where) and after spending half an hour there (OMG, new Star Wars toys!) we walked back east, towards our hotel and walked all the way back, with a quick stop to get Julius some frozen yoghurt.