The Singapore JetStar Jetsaver Light Challenge

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You're about to read one of the longest post I've ever written in a long long time. I know it can be draggy but I assure you, it's a fun filled process You will see a side of me and my partner-in-crime you've never seen before.
We take travel camwhoring to the next level, like totally...

For you, the readers and for your eyes only. Enjoy!

When you're in Rome, do like the Romans do.

Someone once told me that to get beneath the skin of a country, its people and culture, you have to live in it. There's no shortcut to getting to know a place in depth unless you spend enough time in it.

In my list of the 5 things I would like to do in Singapore and how we plan to max out our RM140 (70 per person) budget, we listed down the most economical way to travel, eating cheap but good food, shopping and sightseeing. The list may not sound too appealing but the real joy was actually the tasks execution. Little did I realize that we were not only playing tourist on that trip but we were, in a way, living like the locals.

Sit tight and allow me to slowly reveal our trip.

Saturday, 18th July

We were supposed to meet the JetStar team in the airport at 7 in the morning for a short briefing. As I was about to depart from my house I received a sms from Zeek. Not really the kind of sms I was hoping to read...

Ok, briefing in 10 minutes and he just woke up. I texted back to ask if he was kidding. Turned out, I was the one running late I figured he just like to FHL up sometimes

We were given an allowance of RM140 (yes, in ringgit not SGD) to exchange and a copy of our booking confirmation number. After checking in, we had no choice but to exchange SGD currency in the airport. It turned out to be lesser than we originally thought, it's never a good deal to exchange in airport. We're down to $56 to spend.

It's alright, nothing can take away the mounting excitement. If any, it challenged us even more to plan our spending.

At 930am, we were officially flying off to Singapore! We were too excited we couldn't stop talking all the way. In fact, I think we must have been the only people who were talking in the flight

We touched down in Singapore exactly an hour later. There was no hurry for someone will be there to pick us up to the hotel.

Yes I know, our attire was completely mismatching. I asked Zeek, why the hell do you wear jeans when you're gonna be running under the hot sun in a hot place? Now this is the time he is supposed to say...... FML.

At the exit, there was a man holding up a sign for us.

Doing a headcount of everybody. A brief look at the fellow competitors. *looking at them with fierce piercing eyes*

This was the hotel shuttle.

Hey Singapore! what's in store for us today?

The journey to the hotel was around 20 mins. Not too bad, Grand Mecure Roxy is a 4 star business hotel. Not bad for a sponsored free trip

Being such a kiasu team, the first thing we did after dropping off our bags was to...

plan how to get to places....


Instead, we hit the elevator button and headed towards the hotel's 4th floor for a taste of Singapore Sling!

The bar facing the hotel's pool

Happy campers!

No no, this is not because we're alcoholic because we're sooooo *cough* NOT *cough* but we figured we needed something refreshing after a long day of traveling, oh gosh that was the fakest, lamest excuse ever but you can trust me when I tell you it was the best Singapore Sling I've tried thus far! I could have had seconds but not really a good time to get drunk.

That was the first taste of Singapore! So far so good

Asking for directions from the hotel's concierge on how to get to the nearest MRT station

Next, we looked for a place to eat to fuel up for the rest of the journey. Call it fate or coincidence, we were actually staying just a street away from the place where I last had Katong laksa during my last trip to Singapore. And we went back to exactly the same stall I patron-ed too!

Katong laksa with Lor Han Kor, yummy! Anyone who eats with me will always get extra cockles.

$10 for two

After lunch, we decided to do some sightseeing and pay a visit to the Changi Chapel and Museum since we were in the area. Boarded bus 966 from the hotel to Eunos MRT for a buck.

And got on the almost packed MRT to get to Tanah Merah.

where we had to get on another bus again to get to the place. I had no idea the journey was going to take so long to get there @_@ This place had better be worth it!

No, not this!

But this

It was interesting how the place came to be called Changi. Thanks to the fellow foreigners who could not pronounce the word "Chengal", a type of wood used to make furniture.

The place was separated into the museum, the chapel, the prison cell and there was a cafe outside where you can take a break after the tour.

The outdoor chapel, it looked nicer in real than in the picture.

Then, we toured the museum for free, being really cheap by pretending to stand close to a group of tourist and listen to the history of Japanese occupation in Singapore by the tourguide for no fees. And the museum smelt of...... manggo lassi... mind you, it wasn't fragrant but sour. This is what you get when a large bunch of sweaty big guys lingered in the room for too long

Next to the museum was the Changi prison cell.

What's it like in there?

Sad, emo and depressing...

Ok, it was supposed to be that way, we thought it was the perfect spot to take emo shots so we did! You're probably going to curse me if I put up all the pictures we took in there

It was getting late and we still have far places to go before making it back in time for dinner. Before we made another long trip back out to "civilization" we decided to do a Star jump pose in front of the sign.

*please.... don't laugh....*

Ladies & gentlemen, this is my perfect Star shot, successfully taken on first attempt. I'm born to do this! hahaha

Perfect or not?!

Since we were already way out of town, we decided to drop by Changi Village market, located 10 mins away from Changi Chapel, quoted as one of the oldest market in Singapore. It was a combination of a food court and market.

Interesting sign!

A little further down the street is Changi Coastal Park.

Near the entrance of the park is a jetty where people board ferry to Pulau Ubin.

We took a short stroll around the park, just observing the activities by the locals. It is no doubt a popular campsite, jogging/cycling track, fishing site, canoeing or even simply a place to lie on the grass to sleep. Why don't we have more parks like this in Penang?

It would have been a perfect place to spend the afternoon but time was merciless so we made a move on to the city.

We brought the adventure forward to the city, where our first main goal was to hunt for....

SNACK! Old Charng Kee, the trusted delicious tea snack to soothe the hunger pangs.

If I ever have a food talkshow, I'll call it Tham Ciak! haha (erm I think it means Glutton in Hokkien)

After a brief tea break at the side walk of a busy street, we continued walking.

And look what we spotted! Another KOMTAR lookalike building!

We walked past the Supreme Court and there were people in cosplay costumes

Could not resist the temptation to take a picture! Ok, we're really damn thick skinned. We were clueless of what anime characters they're supposed to be but what the heck, it's cool! Now this shot I bet none of the other teams have!

Oh look! Red ants alert!!!

From my camera

From his camera, you tell me how to compete like that!

Our tired, aching feet made it to the oh-so-famous Merlion. We figured this is a Must-See, Must-Be place for every tourist who comes to Singapore. The place was like crowded... hardly an empty spot to take a picture without having to stop the incoming traffic. Oh yes, we stopped crowds.

Zeek said to do THE pose. Drinking the water from the Merlion. Been there, done that, CHECKED.

One normal picture of the team.

And we took the challenge to do the unpredictable. We decided to do a Star jump in front of the hundreds and hundreds of tourists. We didn't stop crowds but we definitely turned some heads with our funny antics. We found a patient cameraman who's kind enough to take a few shots of us doing the jump.

Getting ready, get set and....

GO! Oh crap, I'm too slow -_-

Another take, also FAILED! My hand blocked his face :S Too excited wtf

A few more tries and yet we could not get a satisfying Star jump so we called it a quit

And decided to go back to the hotel for a short rest and refreshing shower. Gosh we were bumped. Our feet were tired, painful and aching. Can't blame me for taking off my flipflops to massage my feet while waiting for the train, can you?

Singapore MRT stations have very nice murals and this is one of them!

We spent a BOMB only on the transportation and we're left with this much ($19.8 to be exact), to survive for the rest of the night and another couple of hours tomorrow

Since the mission to spend within the budget of RM140 failed, we decided to both chip in $10 each for the night and splurge on dinner.

The pick for the night is CHOMP CHOMP, where it's quoted famous for it's Satay BeeHoon, Chicken Wings and Hokkien Mee.

The place was packed and smelt of food. I regretted washing my hair the moment I stepped into the food court as I was instantly drenched with the smell of smoke and food @_@

Getting ready to dig in!

The Satay BeeHoon was just average, basically it's just beehoon topped with satay sauce with prawns and meat.

Grilled stingray was also average, they used cincalok as the sauce to dip but I prefer the Malaysian version's better.

The muttonballs were good and so was the soup

Hokkien Mee, although it's actually the Hokkien Char version in Penang was also surprisingly tasty and a little different than Hokkien Char in Penang. Got pork lard summore! Thumbs up!

And I finally got to try the sweet version of black sauce Char Koay Kak! Yummy! Should have asked for extra black sauce, extra burnt version cause it was sooo good! I called it 'surprise with every bite' because I never knew what I put into my mouth for it was so dark It could be a piece of egg or rice cake or chye por (preserved vegetable bits) or prawn

We lived up to the reputation of being called gluttons. 5 dishes for 2 person and this was all that's left.

Really, this is not the time to be regretting when you've just downed a good amount of yummylicious food! Diet can wait, since I seem to be forever doing that anyway

At this point, we're down to $4, of which we ended spending on a cab

After the sinful indulgence in CHOMP CHOMP, night life in Singapore is awaiting us. Nothing beats the experience than to soak in the local music scene in Singapore. We decided to go Timbre. Little did we know there are 3 Timbres in Singapore -_-

We were directed to the one in Boat Quay.

But it wasn't too appealing so we decided to move on to the one in Armenian Street. We had to queue for about 20 minutes or so before settling ourselves next to the bar. It must be one of the most popular hot spots in Singapore for night entertainment.

We did not regret the decision to go there that night. Good Fellas (the name of the band) was amazing as usual and put on a great show.

Company was great! Zeek's cousin joined us for a bit (drinks were on him *woot*)

Zeek had this. Kids, do not attempt this. The blogger will not be responsible for your liver malfunction.

I swear I only had a Vodka Redbull

Lucky for us, we had a free ride back for the night. Don't want to imagine how much it'll cost us to go back by cab after midnight considering the distance of the place we stayed in and Timbre.

And my, did we crash well that night.... Too much walking, too much sweating, too much fun...

Sunday 19th July

The next morning brought us to Chinatown after breakfast.

I guess we were a tad too early. The shops were only opening.

We paid a visit to the Chinatown Heritage Centre, Zeek die die also must go so I accompany lor but we were only halfway inside the shop for we're too cheap to pay for a tour, not enough budget mm-kaaaayyy~

So we did a little window shopping...

And we realized that the whole Singapore experience is not complete without a little shopping. So we bought ourselves some souvenirs.

Zeek got some pretty interesting postcards for himself for $3 (2 pieces) and the cheapo me.... went for something more useful at that moment. A $1 fan to fan myself because it's so freaking hot!

What? Cheap and practical what!

I just hope people won't mistaken me for a "pat ku" from mainland -_-

We still had some time to kill and we found a perfect spot to rest and relax. Here are some creative special things you can do in the little garden of Chinatown, next to the MRT entrance brought to you specially by ZeekNotGeek and Willyyilly.

*oh gosh this is so embrassing but we're very determined*

You can do it the old way, play Tai Chi (a fan will complete the whole look)

Meditating, with the comforting noise from the traffic down below and voices of old uncles gossiping at the side

Play a bit of kungfu (see so healthy and no one gives a damn)

Or, you can practice doing the Starjump for the competition

and then laugh about it when it failed kau kau hahahha

Ok, next camwhore site. We're so determined to win that we not only embarrassed ourselves in front of hundreds of tourist in Merlion and Esplanade but we'll also go the distance by camwhoring at the side of the street.

The jump, not perfect...

Then we had a few more styles...

The "dangdut" style

The "Wonder Woman" style

The "Chinese Opera" style

It's amazing we had wonderful photographers that will actually tolerate our nonsense -_-

Ok, enough fooling around, time to get chill out...

Say HURRAY for the funky good time here!

We hopped off the MRT at Cityhall for a sinful indulgence in Ministry of Food

I don't have to tell you how awesome the dessert was...

You can even pour "gula melaka" (as I call it) onto your ice cream mm-kaaayy~!

After we've done sinning, we decided to call it a day and head back to hotel. We've had so much fun laughing and taking pictures in that few hours we were there. Suddenly all that mattered was not the end results but the process of doing it because we want to. Well of course, we'd still want to win but nothing mattered more than to actually "enjoy" doing it rather than doing for the sake of it.

After much deliberation, we've decided on our best Star jump, based on our synchronization. The picture quality may not be the best but our hands and legs coordination was so synchronized and our facial expressions were full.

Here it is, our Starjump of the trip!

*click to enlarge*

Taken at the beach in Changi Coastal Park, it's memorable to us because one old kind uncle took the effort and actually had the patience to learn to use the camera and shoot it for us. And he managed to capture us on the perfect sync. Kudos to him, a blessing to us.

It's also memorable for us because the beach was an accidental "stumble" and we happened to like it a lot. It'll be so good if we are able to go back there again and take the time to do everything we want without having to rush.

It was indeed a trip to remember. Camwhoring has never been this extreme before. I'm glad for the most outgoing friend, ZeekNotGeek for making this trip with me.

So to summarize it all, we've done more than 5 things in Spore. Sure we blew the budget and actually had to top up maybe like another $40 but it was money well spent

1) Start the journey with a sweet taste of Singapore, the Singapore sling! - CHECKED

2) Travel it all.... buses, MRT, taxis, walking... we've done it! - CHECKED

3) Eat good food, both hawker and restaurant - CHECKED

4) Sightseeing, historical landmark of WWII and Spore famous Merlion, EsplanAde, Chinatown (can't cover the rest due to time factor) - CHECKED

5) A taste of Singapore's nightlife with live band, live music, in one of the hottest spot - CHECKED!

6) Shopping, it wasn't much but it's still shopping! - CHECKED!

7) Meeting acquaintances/friends/family member in Singapore, 7 out of 10 Malaysians know someone in Singapore - CHECKED

8) Take more than enough pictures we can count, decent ones and silly ones we can look back and laugh - CHECKED

9) Most importantly, HAD FUN - CHECKED

We were this close to double the list.

I guess the next thing to do is to squat with the Filipino workers on their Sunday day out in one of the hotspots on Orchard street hahaha

Here's the breakdown summary of our expenses.

Public transport : ~ $21
Food : ~ $40
Shopping : ~ $4 (haha my pathetic fan and Zeek's postcard )

So technically, we were a little over budget *wink* but what the heck, we had a lot of fun!

And last but not least, thank you JetStar for making this possible for us

And to credit all of you for your patience reading till the end, I shall now show you the most ridiculous picture of me of the whole entire trip.

It is called....

The Chinese BEYONCE

With this shot, my reputation is officially doomed

No it's not a wig, it's my real hair. Lesson learnt, don't try to jump with your hair loose, you might just end up looking like a lioness.

So, got chance to win or not?!

P/S: At the end of this entry, I realized that it had been 4 hours since I started. The crazy things I'd do for my blog....

P/P/S: Another hour to fine tune everything so that's like 5.
lonlee2 says:
Very entertaining! Looked like fun!!
Posted on: Jan 28, 2012
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