I’ve been meaning to write this since we came back. Finally got some time today.
It was a good trip. Singapore is a beautiful city. We could totally imagine ourselves living there. Green, very clean, very law-abiding, all systems work like clock-work, loads of Indians and doesn’t somehow seem very foreign. Both of us really, really liked the place. Sadly R’s sister is moving to US next month so most probably we won’t be able to go there again.
It was the first time we were parenting solo and it was great. We are so much more confident and comfortable now. Sure it’s tough, but it’s also fun.
We left early morning on 30th August. Bangalore to Chennai and then Chennai to Singapore. The start wasn’t on a very good note since Anna puked in the taxi 10 minutes into the drive to airport. Puked a lot and kept puking. She was fine once we reached the airport but overall the onward journey was the worst and most difficult part of the trip. Chennai airport is filthy, and the international terminal is worse than the domestic. The loos are wet and stinking, there are no baby care rooms so I had to change Anna’s diaper on those stinking seats, there is only one sad food stall inside and the whole place is just so crappy overall. We had a tough time stopping Anna from touching all the filthiest possible things during the 2 hour stopover. There was a lot of turbulence during the flight to Singapore and she started puking again. Poor thing would sleep, get up and puke and cry and sleep again. The worst part was that after landing we were kept in the plane for 45 minutes extra due to some problem. I will never fly Air India again if I can help it and I will never go via Chennai again. R’s brother-in-law was at the airport to receive us. To further continue our miserable day, Anna started howling the minute we sat in the car and screamed like never before for most of the journey. She was very, very hungry because we hadn’t fed her much due to the all the puking. Thankfully she was happy once we reached their place and things were much better after that.
We didn’t go around a lot because of the heat and because we were scared that Anna was puking because of motion sickness. Among the places we went to were the zoo, Sentosa island, Marina Bay, the Singapore flyer, saw the Merlion, little India. Anna was mostly very well behaved though she ate very less and mostly survived on milk. I discovered just how much she loves water. The apartment complex had lots of water bodies and swimming pools and Anna tried her best to jump into all of them. She had a blast when we actually took her into the toddler pool. She enjoyed it so much that she had to be literally dragged kicking and screaming out of it. Sadly Bangalore weather isn’t very conducive for swimming, but we have resolved to take her as much as we can next year when it’s warm enough.
We mostly traveled by bus and metro – very comfortable and very economical. I was pleasantly surprised when I was offered a seat in the metro each and every time, even when it was very crowded, on account of carrying Anna. I had planned to do loads of shopping but ended up only buying some souvenirs and some stuff for Anna. There was just no time.
Anna became good friends with her Jiya didi. Jiya was fascinated with her and would follow her all around, trying to hold her and carry her. The two had a good time playing with each other and I’m so happy that Anna got a chance to interact with her cousin. R’s sister’s second baby is due in November. The baby will be born in the US and I have no idea when we will get to see it.
Initially we were a bit scared about going to Malaysia since the plan was to drive and we were sure that she would keep puking. But when she didn’t puke even once in Singapore we decided to go ahead. Great decision because Anna was little trooper throughout. She slept all the time in the car and was no trouble at all. Malaysia is a lot like India. Only less populated, cleaner though not as clean as Singapore and with great roads. We didn’t spend much time there. About half a day in Malakka and half a day in Kuala Lumpur. Saw the famous patronus towers. One thing we found very hilarious were the spellings. Malaysian is written in the english script and has a lot of English words with modified spellings. Some examples are teksi, lori, farmasi, teknikal, klinik, sosial. We had a game going on of who could spot the most ridiculously spelled word.
The journey back was ok. Anna didn’t puke and slept quite a lot. We had a longer stopover in Chennai this time and decided to spend the time in the lobby of a hotel nearby. Got fleeced by the prepaid taxi stand guy. 300 for a distance of maybe 5 kms. One more reason to hate Chennai airport. Got stuck in a regular traffic jam in Bangalore once we were back, but we are learning to live with that now (it took me 5o minutes to reach office today. Did I mention that I live about 2.5 kms away?)
The first one week back was a bit tough. Anna was used to me being around 24×7. Plus Mummy was also gone. But it wasn’t as bad as I had expected. She recognized her ‘Didi’ and went to her though she does cry a lot when I leave. That will continue for a long time I think, and I am slowly convincing my heart to not break so badly everyday when I leave her. Plus she fell ill on Thursday. Got a cough for the first time, that too a bad one and high fever. I took off on Friday and took her to the doctor. Thankfully the fever disappeared in a day and the cough is better now. It is so very difficult to make her drink the medicine. She screams and thrashes and tries to to spit it all out. We finally bought a dropper which we can force into her mouth. But sometimes she chokes and just vomits it all out – along with whatever food we had managed to coax into her.
Anna turned 15 months old on Monday. There is so much I want to write about her. Will hopefully get down to it soon.
Some pics of the trip.
Finally got released from jail (the stroller)
I can’t believe there’s so much water!
Rickshaw ride in Malaysia.