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The second day of a holiday can be less exciting than the first. You’re a bit more tired, and if you walked around the whole day like we did on day one, you have massive blisters (or at least very sore feet) and you don’t feel like doing much (I had blisters on the balls of my feet that were the size of my big toe. Owie.). 

Many people still think of Singapore as a good shopping destination, but it’s not vastly cheaper than Australia anymore (also thanks, internet!), and we learned a long time ago that even thinking about clothes in Asia as larger Western women is just an exercise in defeat. Mum’s not interested in looking at tech stuff and neither of us cares about luxury goods. So we decided not to bother with the malls.

Without any real plan (and after a false start when we caught a cab to Clarke Quay and then realised that nothing really opens there until the afternoon and it’s all restaurants and bars anyway) we decided to catch the SIA hop-on hop-off bus, which does a loop around the major tourist areas. It was a good way to get an overview of the city, and to be able to go “oh yeah, I remember that place!” Mum marvelled that she had ever been able to drive around, or cope with the heat when we lived there.

ah, nostalgia

Street art in Little India

Not much of old Singapore left these days, just shophouses here and there

We did get off the bus at Little India, but mum was starting to feel unwell, so we didn’t explore. We had been keen to go to a good hawker centre for food but settled for a noisy basement food court for reasonable chicken rice. And of course, going where the locals go it is vastly cheaper than any tourist-aimed version of the same dish (about AU$3.80 for a satisfying serve of chicken, rice, vegies, soup).

Back at the hotel, while mum rested and repacked, I wandered across the road to the duty free shop just for a look. More cosmetics and luxury goods. I tried on a $400 pair of Prada glasses that I had pinned on Pinterest a while ago, and managed to get a snap before the saleswoman zoomed over. It was so weird, this three storey glossy shop, divided into mini boutiques for each brand and with no one in them except a multitude of well-groomed staff.

Then it was time for the parental changeover. Mum and I had delicious xiao long bao and noodles at the airport, then she headed off to Manchester and dad flew in from KL. We were all going to have a coffee together but dad’s plane was delayed, so it really was a bit of a tag team effort. So good to spend time with each parent, though the flavour of the holiday was very different with each one.