Go Rishi, it’s your birthday…

…Loose your luggage, its your birthday!

Okay okay, so we’re in Singapore, Anj had lovingly spoilt me and organized this part of the trip all for me! ๐Ÿ™‚

But after our flight over night, with 8 hour stop over, and after the usual couple of donuts, we waltzed down to the luggage area to find our bags missing!

GUTTED!

Would we get them back? Would we have to wear the same clothes for the next 2 months? Would we have to go shopping and buy a whole new wardrobe? What would we wear after a shower!?

After all these questions ran through my mind…we complained and received 80 quid to survive on for the day!

So off we went to Little India where we took a nice walk around and visited an amazing temple. It had incredible statues and carvings throughout, and we even found a poster advertising a talk taking place by Swamiji (Chinmaya Mission)! Small world!


We then trekked back to our hostel, hoping to discover our bags were back! And guess what they were! Shweeeeet!

So in other words we got paid 80 quid for our luggage to be delivered to our hostel! This was especially sweet since our hostel was on a steep hill, so we avoided the climb with our heavy backpacks!

Anywho, after getting ready and a wonderful meal at an italian restaurant, Anjali took me to this amazing bar right on the top of one of the tallest buildings in Singapore!


ย The views were spectacular, especially at night and we were there till 1 to celebrate my birthday (whoop whoop, I’m now 29). Really special place! Being the partay animals we are though (not), we headed off to the Clarke Quay clubs! Was buzzing with people and all in high spirits! Was a special night!

The next day (my birthday), we received a sudden phonecall from Kish! I couldn’t believe it! Kishan and Meera are ENGAGED! Soooo exciting! And an amazing proposal, which I’ll leave for them to tell the story! CONGRATS guys! (Even though Meera, you know Kish will still always be mine…especially when Brian Mcknights on!)

We then visited Orchard Road to roam the malls. This street is jampacked with shopping center after shopping center! Was a load of window shopping for me and Anj though (especially after the amount we spent in Japan) but it was amazing to see how multicultural Singapore is and how safe it feels to walk around!


Finally we taxied (with a guy who quite obviously was a tour guide in his previous life) all the way to Singapore Zoo! This is a MUST see in Singapore! The animals are not behind cages but actually out in front of you! It was like visiting a wildlife safari, but where you kinda knew you were safe! Amazing experience, filled with monkies, snakes, lions, giraffes, kangaroos, birds, elephants and much much more!

 

 

That finished just in time for us to speed back to little india for dosas, start following the world cup cricket final on our mobile phone and get ready to take our flight to Australia!

The worst thing was we actually got on the plane to travel to Australia just after India started their innings and lost there first 2 wickets! 31-2…crazy!

All I could do was sit there wondering! Did India do it? Are they gonna end their 28 year wait? Will Sachin get his hands on the trophy before he retires?

We landed to find they won! And on top of that Man Utd won, Arsenal drew! I literally wanted to jump up and down on the plane, as I waited to get off! I seriously had to restrain myself!

Overall my 29th Birthday was unforgettable! In one day my best mate got engaged, India won the world cup, Man utd extended their lead at the top, and Anjali spoilt me rotten! Thanks Anj for a wonderful day! (P.S. thanks to all those who sent me their birthday wishes too, I’m lucky to have you all!)

Wanna see an elephant with diarrhoea?

You sick sick people! Come on! Can’t believe you guys! Still….don’t worry to satisfy your cravings we took a close up picture of it ๐Ÿ™‚ (ps Kish and Meera this elephant post is dedicated to you guys btw :))

Before we get to that, let me tell you where we are…we’re in Thailand, in Chang Mai, the land of the elephants!

So after arriving through our flashpacker methods (flights)- we decided the best way to start is to go and see ourselves a Muay Thai boxing night!

To give you an idea of the atmosphere at the boxing stadium, there’s a ring in the center of a massive warehouse kinda room with concrete flooring all around, foldable chairs on 4 sides of the ring, and a drinks bar and food stalls surrounding. Bookies are moving around shouting and trying to push people into betting against them, and there’s some crazy clarinet style instrument playing constantly in the background, even while the fights are on. Completely raw and pretty cool!

Me and Anj had reserved our seats and had center view to watch a total of 7 different fights!ย ย As we watched each battle in the run up to the main international fight, it was crazy to see how intensely each of the fighters went at one another…

A few fights stood out though. A junior match involving probably 12 year olds where one got seriously injured is one. People were taking photos, cheering and shouting abuse, but to us, it seemed pretty bad to be making money off two kids brawling in a ring! But that’s competition I guess!

Anyway another special fight was set up for fun, where it is like a royal rumble – 4 fighters in a ring with a referee, but here’s the kicker the 4 fighters were all blindfolded. They all went at each other like mad men, but the funny part, because they couldn’t see each other, the person who got beat on the most was the referee! Lol… Too funny, hmm maybe it’s one of those you had to be there moments!

Finally we arrived to the main event; an international fight with Spain vs Thailand. The Spanish fighter had his massive entourage supporting him in the corner as he entered the ring looking pretty confident.

Now, before each fight starts the fighters do a little warming up and some dance to the music. The Thai fighter did his bit pretty quickly and went into the corner…the bigger Spanish fighter though took literally 10 mins as his entourage cheered him on. He was so cocky, he decided to start showing off with his dance moves and trying to psyche his opponent out!

Finally he finished, the bell rang and the fight began….and yep within a minute the spanish guy was down on the floor, writhing in pain! So funny – A First round knockout! And that ended our night!

The next day was our elephant jungle trek! This involved us taking bamboo rafts down the river, seeing a beautiful waterfall, trekking and the piece de resistance; riding on elephants within the jungle up and down hills.

This part was amazing. We arrived to find 6 elephants waiting for us and one baby elephant. It was sooo cute and would follow you around.

So after our little play time, we got on these sort of thrones which sit on the elephants backs to be taken into the jungle. This is no normal elephant ride. Its hilly and the elephants are inclined to do their own thing, like suddenly stopping to eat random trees or sniff at poop on the floor. We were literally getting thrown all over the shop and holding on tight for dear life…

Then our ‘driver’ asked me if I would like to sit on the head of the elephant, where he was sitting…there was no way I was gonna turn down the opportunity (as none of the other people with us were given this chance), so on I got whilst the man went and sat at the back, on the throne, next to Anjali!

The next 40 mins were insane. I was holding onto the elephant’s head with every muscle in my body and honestly did think I would fall off. Anj I think was scared for me, which is really cute :), but I kept my cool and held on. However, a couple of times, Anj did nearly fall off herself and kicked me in the backside! Thanks Anj! ๐Ÿ™‚

Anyways whilst I was on the head, the elephant in front kept pooping big lumps of mushy poo and farting like a trooper (as Anj says) in my face. Serious case of diarrhoea. I would like to say I turned away and closed my nose, but noooo I took a massive whiff and Anj took a picture…NICE…yep we enjoyed every minute of it!

Afterwards Anjali got the chance to feed the elephants bananas…it was so much fun and we kinda bonded with the big guys…gonna misss them…Then again we have our own pair of Hathis at home ;)!

Finally the last day of our action packed Chang Mai experience involved a Thai cooking class at the Asian Scenic School (Mitan, or as Anj calls him Moogle our very own SE Asia Google guide, convinced us on this one). We went to the food market, learnt about what types of veggies to pick out and the main thing, how to make Thai food like spring rolls from scratch, papaya salad, pad Thai (even though the dish “raad na” sounded interesting), green curry, massaman curry and veggie tom yum soup.

A really enjoyable and tasty experience, though I was a bit slow! Anj on the other hand smashed it; her papaya salad and soup were incredible! Know who’s doing the cooking at home when we get back! ๐Ÿ™‚

Well…what a great end to Chang Mai…next is Phuket and our luxury part of the trip, the Kho Phi Phi islands! On and away with our flash packer trip – yep we taking a flight again! Bring it on!