Tea, tennis, crocodiles and dragon kilns….

We are settling into our school schedule here. Sports, music lessons, playing with friends and a little homework. It’s feeling normal again which feels good. The kids all seem happy with their teachers and are settling in nicely for the year. Next week we have their virtual open houses. Sad to not be able to meet their teachers in person, but this will do for now.

Last Thursday I had a super busy afternoon/evening. First I went to high tea at the Raffles hotel. It was so fancy, fun and delicious. When you arrive out front, they open your door for you. The tea room is in a beautiful space just off the main lobby. The hotel was recently restored and is so lovely. I signed up for the tea through the AWA. I knew one of the women before I went, but it was so lovely to meet the other 3. Also so amazing that they take the time to schedule reservations in our groups of 5 (max people allowed together in public in SG).

Next stop was the kickoff for my tennis team season. I am determined to improve my doubles match play so I tried out for WITS (women in tennis Singapore). I ended up matched with a lovely team that is mostly Swedish women. I am a soaring Swede! Our sister team is the smashing Swedes. Right after my tea, the team had organized to meet up in groups of 5 at one restaurant for drinks and another for dinner. It was great spending time off the court getting to know my teammates and getting to meet some of the members of our sister team. I have to believe our team has the most fun in all of WITS!

Friday I was exhausted and actually a little hung over from socializing more in one day than in the past 8 months. In the morning my friend Angie and I went for a walk around the botanical garden. She also introduced me to a lovely baker that makes amazing sourdough, then we got caught in a monsoon level rainstorm walking home. A landscaper in the park took pity on us and picked us up in his golf cart (even though he’s not supposed to, I hope he didn’t get in trouble!). Angie and I were so wet, we were wringing out our shirts and masks. We made a puddle in the bus on the way home. We just laughed the whole time. That night, Ryan, the kids and I went back to plank pizza in Dempsey for dinner. Definitely a favorite!

Saturday was filled with sports and then Ryan and I escaped for our weekly date night. This weekend we checked out Heart of Darkness which is a brewery out of HCM in Vietnam. The beer and atmosphere was excellent. The food was average, but we are picky after so much delicious food here…

Sunday we tried to motivate to go to Sungei Buloh wetland reserve. After much grumbling, we finally got there around 10am. Sungei Buloh is one of the last remaining mangrove marshlands in Singapore. It’s also the last place to see the saltwater crocodiles that used to be everywhere here. There are 2 sides to the reserve. The more Instagram worthy side was super crowded. But, the side with all the wildlife was fine. We saw 2 crocodiles and a bunch of HUGE monitor lizards (one eating a fish, yuck). The reserve is just about as far north as you can get in Singapore. Malaysia was so close….

For your monitor lizard watching pleasure

Finally, on Monday, 2 friends and I trekked back up north to visit the last remaining “dragon kiln” pottery center in Singapore. The kiln is called a dragon kiln because of its shape and how the smoke comes out of it. It was huge! It ran all the way up a hill. They only fire it 2-3 times a year, so we will have to come back to see that. While they only make some of their products in the kiln, they had a huge variety of pottery that was hand printed. After wandering around, getting lost and enjoying all the beautiful pottery, I came home with a small bowl made in the dragon kiln and a HUGE umbrella holder painted in perenakan style. I love my umbrella holder so much. I will definitely trek back up there for more purchases and to see the kiln in action!

Phew, I’m tired just writing about it! Next weekend we’re trying out a “daycation” so we’ll see how that goes…

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