Right now, I’m feeling somewhat blue so I decided to read my previous journals. One of them was about my first overseas trip way back 2010. Maybe it’s time to share my first overseas adventure.
During that time, I was teaching in the university for 10 years already and I know that my life will continue just the way it is. My life have fallen into a rut – I’ll go to class, deliver my lessons, go home and during the weekends enjoy my ministry. There were times when I’m always looking forward to those two-week semestral breaks so I can change my environment and visit places in the Philippines with my cousins – these trips are those enjoyable times when I can break free from my routine.
It was the month of September, three months before I turned thirty – a life-changing event happened. One of my cousins invited me to accompany him to Singapore to fetch his daughter after she finishes her on-the-job training. I was really excited. Maybe because, I already told myself that I will have no chance of going outside the Philippines. That’s why I’m really grateful for this opportunity.
Here’s a detailed record of my first international trip:
5:00AM Boarded a Victory Liner bus bound to Caloocan.
10:00AM Arrived at Dau Station, where we ate brunch at Jollibee and rented a van going to Diosdado Macapagal International Airport (DMIA), checked-in our luggage and paid the following fees: Terminal and Security fee =600php and the Travel Tax=1,620php. Went to the immigration for verification of identity docs and stayed at the Departure lounge.
12:50PM Boarded our flight – we used Tiger Airways.
5:00PM Arrived at the Changi Budget Terminal, Singapore, boarded a taxi and checked-in at Regin Hotel, unpacked our things and explored the vicinity. At the back of our hotel is the Geylang district. I have seen a lot of shops and roadside eateries or hawker food stalls.
We decided to try 3 big bowls of spicy noodles as our dinner which amounted to 8SGD. Then we went back to our hotel to rest.
Boarded a bus and used the EZ link card for the first time, we have to fetch my niece and her things at 95 Student Hostels where she stayed during the months of her training at Coffee Club. Then in the afternoon we went to Mustafa to change our Php bills to SGD and bought some souvenirs.
Then we roamed the streets of Singapore. Explored Plaza Singapura and had our lunch at Just Acia. Our lunch was served with unlimited ice cream, coffee and soda.
Next, we visited Orchard Plaza and Orchard Central. There I experienced going up a very high escalator. Somehow, I got really nervous and my palms started perspiring – that’s when I realized that I also have fear of heights.
At past 4:00 in the afternoon, we boarded the tourist bus to see Marina Bay Sands Hotel where we bought tickets so we can go up the Sands Sky Park – a view deck shaped like a luxury ship where you can see the view overlooking the city.
We had fun looking at the view, had a lot of photos taken. As the sky becomes dark, the city transformed into a city of lights. It was an amazing sight to behold. As we explored the sky park, we also saw the infinity pool.
Upon leaving Marina Bay Sands, we passed through the Double helix bridge and visited the Youth Olympic park.
Afterwards, we boarded the train, then bus #64 and bought fruits at the wet market near our hotel. We were really exhausted since we were walking most of the time to see and appreciate different sights so we took a much needed rest.
Photos (c) of Te Leah.