My sis Mimi had told me late last year that she and Brady planned to take our parents to a week long trip to Singapore in January of 2020. Being that Mimi’s birthday fell on that week, I decided that I would show up in Singapore unannounced, as a birthday surprise to her. Our family has always been big on surprises, but we’ve slowed down on that front ever since Brady was born.
I began secretly scheming my surprise with my brother in law, who became my spy to keep me in the loop of how Mimi’s travel plan would unfold. When he confirmed the dates for me, I immediately booked my flight that would take me from Taipei straight to Singapore, arriving the the day prior to Mimi, Brady, and my parents’ arrival.
Well, as it turned out, Mimi decided to change her dates after I booked my ticket, because she had found a better flight deal for the following week. My brother in law advised me to come clean with my plans since I had already booked my ticket. Ugh, why has it become so much harder to do surprises for my sis these days??
I revealed my plans to Mimi and she couldn’t stop laughing.
“Oops, sorry to ruin all your plans, but I love you for the thought!”
We shared a good laugh about the failure of my surprise, and then she proceeded in keeping the original itinerary. We decided that we’d shift the surprise to be for Brady and my parents instead, so neither of us said a word about my joining of the trip.
After my week in Taipei, I flew directly to Singapore with Vivian and stayed my first night with her. We arrived in the evening and immediately scooped up her hubby and headed to a nearby Hawker Center–the open air food stall complexes that Singapore is well known for.
Sadly, at midnight, I got a call from Mimi reporting that Brady had a high fever and they would not be able to fly to Singapore the next morning as planned. I was, ofcourse, utterly devastated, but there was nothing I could do other than to pray for Brady’s speedy recovery in hopes that they could still fly out one day later.
The next morning, I rose early to play with Vivian and Kenny’s daughter Charlotte, then had a quick sushi lunch with them before I taxied over to the airport to pick my parents up.
My sis had already revealed to my mom that I would meet them in Singapore (as otherwise they’d insist to cancel the trip altogether since they would have no idea how to navigate around Singapore on their own) so I was only able to surprise my dad. At least that was successful, lol! He was truly shocked to see me at the airport. 🙂
The Changi Airport in Singapore is world renown for so many things that earned its reputation as the world’s best airport, but on top of that long list is the 130 ft tall Rain Vortex, making it the tallest indoor waterfall of the world. Designed and engineered by the same company that created the Fountains of Bellagio in Las Vegas, this rain vortex sends rain-harvested, recirculated water seven stories down from the room in a circular shape. After I met up with my parents, I immediately brought them over to see the Rain Vortex in person, which definitely did not disappoint. It was an incredible and majestic sight the minute you walk towards the lush, 4 story tiered garden, and you will find yourself completely awe-inspired by the whole indoor forest which boasts more than 900 trees and palms and more than 100,000 shrubs sourced from around the world!
After admiring the waterfall and forest for a little while, we had lunch in one of the many, many restaurants in the adjacent multi-level shopping mall that’s full of glitz and glam kind of shops like all the big brand names you’d expect to find in Singapore– Chanel, Gucci, etc.
Following lunch, we settled into our 2 bedroom service apartment at the Somerset Clarke Quay before venturing to Maxwell Hawker Center in search for the popular Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice! The line looked short when we arrived, but we still ended up waiting like 40 minutes! I had eaten it before on my previous trips to Singapore and quite liked it, but my dad was unimpressed after the wait, lol.
We decided to walk off our dinner by heading to Chinatown and strolling through the night market there. It was fun, but pretty crowded. My mom and I found a fresh durian stand and couldn’t resist sharing one together! 🙂
The next morning, after a yummy breakfast of kaya toast and coffee, I took my parents to the iconic Marina Bay Sands. We walked along the waterfront promenade, found some relief from the heat in the air conditioned mall, and attempted to check out the casino but were rejected when they asked for our passport, which we had left back at the apartment.
We had lunch at the expansive food court inside the mall, which kind of overwhelmed me with the amount of choices that were available! After that, we strolled around some more and I took a ton of pictures for my parents.
In the mid afternoon, we made our way up to the 57th floor of Marina Bay Sands, where we caught a glimpse of the tallest rooftop infinity pool in the world, and then settled comfortably at a table inside Spago Bar & Lounge for drinks.
The view from up there was absolutely astounding, which is why people pay USD $30+ for one glass of wine and USD $20 for a beer.
Unbeknownst to my parents, Mimi had texted me early in the morning to let me know that Brady’s fever had gone away and they would be taking a morning flight to Singapore, arriving in the late afternoon. Since our previous attempts to surprise one another had all pretty much failed for this trip, we decided we would do one last attempt for her and Brady to surprise our parents upon arrival. So, after our drinks at Spago, I suggested we head back to the apartment for my dad’s daily afternoon nap.
Here’s a video of me surprising Brady when he arrived (he had no idea I would be in Singapore) and then a video of Brady surprising my parents. 🙂
Yay, we finally pulled through with ONE surprise! LOL!
Will share our subsequent days in Singapore in Part 2…