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The Grand Asia & Australia Voyage, part 26

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The Grand Asia & Australia Voyage - Holland America Amsterdam, September 19-November 23, 2008

Text by Snookums, Pictures by Filbert

Part Twenty-six

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October 22 (Wednesday, Day 36, Singapore - Continued)

We left off the story in Singapore's Chinatown, where we had just had lunch, and were continuing on.

We left lunch and after walking about 1-1/2 blocks, we ran into Yvan and Alice, our Canadian tablemates. It is a very small world. They also hadnít seen anyone from the ship in their wanderings and thought it was strange. We told them how to take the subway back to the ship and continued walking around.

We just can't get away from those mad Canadians!

More after the jump . . . We headed for the subway station and met up with them again and helped them buy tickets. There was another couple from the ship, too, needing help so since we were the experts on the Singapore subway, we helped them, too. The Singapore subway is pretty easy but there is a $1 deposit on each subway ticket. So, after we got back to the subway stop by the ship, we showed everyone how to get the $1s back.

There were still 2 hours left before we had to be on the ship so Gary, Filbert and Snookums walked to the Singapore Cable Car for a 30-minute roundtrip ride to Sentosa Island and back. The cable car tramway went right over the Amsterdam and dock and it was neat to see the ship from above. We also saw the Merlion statue from the air. The Merlion is the symbol of Singapore and it is Ĺ mermaid and Ĺ lion. When the cable car ride was over Filbert returned to the ship while Snookums and Gary wrote postcards and found a post office to mail them. (Snookums had bought the stamps earlier in the day from an automated postage machine that seemed to be everywhere. Hong Kong had these, too. The US needs to get more of them and put them in places other than the post offices.)

Views from the cable car (5 pics):

The cable car viewed from our stateroom

When Filbert was back onboard, he watched the longshoremen unload the 11 containers. When they were done, he saw a case of Heineken, along with what appeared to be some seafood, being moved FROM the ship to the longshoremen. He assumed that was their tip for the day.

A little bonus at the end of the day

Both of us were tired and sore from the dayís activities and we enjoyed a nice long soak in the hot tub prior to getting ready for dinner. The six of us had a new table for dinner. Everyone but Snookums was hot at the old table for eight people and there was a smaller table in a place with more air circulation so the six of us decided to move. Snookums wore a sweater and the others didnít sweat so it was a good decision to move.

October 23 (Thursday, Day 37, Crossing the equator) -

We crossed the equator into the Southern Hemisphere at 7 AM. A lifeboat drill was scheduled for 10 AM but at 9:45 it was cancelled due to inclement weather so at 10 AM a safety announcement was read over the shipís PA system instead. We were very happy that the lifeboat drill was replaced by the safety announcement.

Filbert went to the 11 AM lecture by the female Australian anthropologist. He said it was a good lecture about how the Aboriginal people view the world.

Snookums spent the day on the verandah reading books and Filbert spent the day inside continuing working on the journal and photos. He went to the Explorations Cafť and managed to get four posts uploaded to medary.com. He has eleven more still to post to get medary.com current. (Oops, two more behind, as of today, making it thirteen to go . . . it's a moving target!)

Pounding out blog posts

Tonight was formal night and Gary and Charlotte called to say they wouldnít be at dinner. That left just Yvan, Alice and us which made for a fast dinner. Snookums thought that there would be gifts waiting in our room since it seemed like formal nights were gift nights, but there were none. She called Yvan, though, to make sure they didnít get anything and they didnít. So, that theory of hers was wrong.

Next: A visitor on the veranda, and--we're dead in the water!!!