I know it’s only the third week of the new year – but I bet you guys are already suffering all sorts of wanderlust, aren’t you? (I know I am).
we traveled to yogyakarta late last year, taking drives out to candi (which translates to temple) burobudur and candi prambanan, a javanese buddhist and hindu temple respectively. both very popular tourist attractions in their own right, they make a majestic picture with their scale and dark-stone facades.
fantastic eating – gratifyingly inexpensive, as well – by the semi-floating market at taling chan. if you had thoughts of eating on a boat while streaming past vendors on their tiny vessels – well, this isn’t it.
here, you plop down on a rather securely fastened floating platform that bobs gently atop the water and wait for your food to be brought to you from the boat-parked kitchen (so to speak). I like this better: great food, no fear of being splattered by dubious river water, and no bulky life-vest constricting the appetite – precisely my jazz.
I pulled the trigger a little too quickly this morning – descriptions now included!
when you get to thailand, a floating market is almost definitely on your list of go-tos. if you’re like us and can’t quite be bothered to get to the typically picturesque markets outside bangkok (the most popular being the damnoen saduak floating market) – two hours early travel and massive crowds to deal with – then this is a great choice. right within the boundaries of the city, a good proper market with more locals than tourists and lots of good food, this place fit right into our schedules and stomachs.
we ate very well here (but that’s for the next post!) – and saw quite a bit about how the locals live, and shop. if you remember the vietnamese market I visited last year, then perhaps you’d notice similarities between the two!
step-in-the-right-direction-but-not-quite-there-yet food fair at the f1 pitstop. I made my way down here on a sweltering sunday afternoon – and while it definitely is encouraging for the local food scene, I think it needs further thought into the sort of food that was on offer.
with a large proportion of asian stores selling dishes already readily available locally – and at inflated prices – and most stores offering carb-heavy specialties, it was difficult to try everything. but at the prices being charged for rather small portions, it’s probably just as well that the dishes were so filling.
after a walk through the flower dome to view tulipmania, we went on to the cloud forest conservatory and were greeted with a tall streaming waterfall, and high humidity amidst cool air air-conditioning.
if you do go, I think you will notice a discernible difference between the two conservatories – the flower dome is a veritable cacophony of color, and the cloud dome a more muted (almost bleak) landscape. the roof garden holds a bit more colour – most of which these photos are of – but it’s pretty cool how they hold to their names.
tulipmania was really a mini garden of imported tulip flowers within the larger garden that was the flower dome conservatory – strips of color delineated by tulip petals, as well as the distinction between buds and blooms. it was a gorgeous display – these flowers very obviously aren’t native to our sweltering, tropical climate, but the wonders of air conditioning and glass-domestruction meant I had the chance to share these beauties with grandma.
warning – this is a photo post. you might like to look away now if you have a fear of colours, are a man, or if the sheer beauty of nature literally takes your breathe away.
I brought my grandma and grandaunt to the conservatories at singapore’s relatively-young gardens by the bay for a look at tulipmania on mother’s day, and we spent a ridiculous amount of time wowing and fawning over the varieties of succulents, cacti and blooms there.
it’s a beautiful place: exotic, luxuriant growth encased in bright natural light (and air-conditioned to boot).
pretty decent american theme-park style offerings at this retroesque diner in universal studios singapore, somewhere along the hollywood strip. this place is just adorable beyond words – the decoration of the place, the little stage outside for apron-donning waitress-pretending performers to dance, the whole thing reminded me of a scene out of my childhood hanna-barbera cartoons. I like kitsch – and I think the whole disney/universal do a great job at transporting this across the world in their perfectly manicured playscapes (probably been watching too much sandra lee).
this is a photo post, so I’ll refrain from disturbing your perusal – suffice to say that I felt like a kid again, going on the battlestar galactica rides, shutting my eyes and praying for sweet life. it’s a glorious place for photos.