Loving Life

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Respite from the city ..Pulau Ubin

This was one of the rare weekends where we had absolutely nothing planned - no trips back to KL, no theatre plays, no movies, no appointments, no errands...my hyper-self felt that something was amiss :p.

Never one to let a weekend go without something planned, I managed to convince Jin to wake up early and head to Pulau Ubin (little island - 10 minutes bumboat ride from S'pore) for a cycling expedition. To catch the bumboats, you need to get to Changi Village and as every true blue Sporean will tell you - what's a visit to Changi without having the famous nasi lemak at the food centre. There are like 5 stalls next to each other selling nasi lemak but only one stall has a 30 minute queue. Sad to say, today was no different so I decided to skip the famous store and went to one with no customers thinking the competitors should be of minimum standard to survive.....to my dismay I soon found out the 30 minute queues are there for a reason - the nasi lemak was pretty ordinary (sigh!). Jin's chicken cutlet wanton noodle was good though and lived up to the 'die die must try' makansutra billing.

After a quick breakfast, we jumped onto the bumboats which by the way, does not take off unless they have 12 passengers..thankfully, we did not have to wait long! It's $2 a ride per pax and moves at a slighty faster than snail speed..hand powered canoes would be the equivalent of snails in this sense ;)

Upon arrival, we did a quick check of the island map to get our bearings and then went to one of the many bicycle shops to rent our bikes for the day ($7 each). The weather was thankfully cloudy so the heat was manageable. The nice sea breeze helped as well. Halfway through, Jin started complaining that his bike seat was too hard and conveniently took over my bike (which had a wide, cushiony seat) as he said I have enough body cushion! grrr..MEN!

It's nice to leisurely cycle around Ubin - one does get the feeling that you are no longer in Singapore...its laidback and rustic and the nature is relatively unspoilt..some parts make you feel like a true explorer :p

July is also durian month and we saw local/wild durians for sale at $10 a kilo...which seemed a bit expensive to us. So as I was cycling pass one durian tree, I decided that it would be nice to try and get durians for free ;). The fruits were still on the branches which were really high up but I figured that if we shook the tree hard enough...tada! the fruits would fall..after 5 minutes of persuasion and lots of coaxing, Jin finally relented to my request of ramming one of the bikes hard into the tree :D

He did just that and guess what? nothing, nada zip! The tree did not even move..not a single leaf even fell :p...he shot me the exasperated "i told you this would not work" look and after I stopped laughing, we started to get on our bikes to head back..and then the shocker! Bcos of the impact against the super solid tree trunk, my bike chain had dislodged itself ..opps :p

So Jin had to come back and got his hands all dirty trying to fix the chain..the good news is he managed to..the bad news was that he gave me more dirty looks..:p

We stopped for a much awaited drink of Thai coconut water..very refreshing after all the heat! Then I saw another cyclist carrying durians he had managed to find and decided that I would not give up and would continue looking out for durians to fall from trees. Just around the bend from the drinks stall, I saw one tree with lots of fruits...and as I was stopping my bike to get off and search the area, one of the local villagers rode by - I casually asked him if there were any durians and he said that they only fall at night :(..but he came over and offered me one from his bike basket! You should have seen Jin's eyes widening at the uncle's generiousity..and my meano husband then said - "see, there are easier ways for a bimbo to get her durian"- grrr..MEN!

We left just after noon as the cloudy skies looked more like rainy clouds. It was a lovely Saturday morning outing where one gets away from the madness of the city and work to the simple life of ruralness, butterflies and monitor lizards.

And the durian, yum..the BEST I have eaten in ages..it had 6 seeds and tasted of the bitter version. Definitely was the perfect ending for our Saturday adventure :).


Blogger Lynda Ng said...

Sounds like fun!!!! Where did you eat the durian?? Did it stink up your condo????? So cool that you got free durian...good job asking...:)

12:24 AM  
Blogger cindee said...

man, the durian 1st stunk up my bag, then my car, then my kitchen :p...yeah, it never hurts to ask..and of course smile :D..heehee

7:00 AM  
Anonymous charm. said...

harros!! went there a couple of months ago, and took Paddy on his first ferry ride!! heh. talk soon!!

5:47 PM  

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