Bangkok to Singapore, Tuesday 17 July 2001
Rose at 5.00am (Bangkok time, 1 hour behind Singapore) to haggle with taxis and make my way to Don Muang International Airport for my return to Singapore on a Thai 747-400. Spent some time in the departure hall searching all the duty free shops for a single newsagent or somewhere I could purchase a last copy of the Bangkok Post to read during my wait for the 8.40am flight. All I could find was a couple of airmail editions of British tabloids at one shop – not quite what I had in mind.
However when I did finally board the plane, there were free copies of all Bangkok’s newspapers available at the door for the taking, so I ended up reading both the Post and The Nation on board. These both appeared to be quite excellent papers, certainly in comparison to anything I’ve seen in Singapore or Malaysia. The flight was comfortable and uneventful (always the best way for flights!) and we arrived in Singapore after about 2 hours.
Getting a taxi to Stevens Road was a simple affair – the driver even knew the apartments. Straight away I grabbed my air ticket and raced down to Orchard Road to the SIA office to try and change my flight. Frustratingly, all their morning flights to Melbourne are booked out for the next week – all I could do was waitlist for Thursday and hope. I did change my confirmed flight from Friday 27 to Thursday 26, but the prospect of hanging about in Singapore for another week just waiting to get home is not attractive.
The agent was very helpful and understanding, and seemed to suggest that my Thursday waitlist ‘would be OK’, even though they only had first class seats left. Feeling somewhat in limbo, I returned to Stevens Road to pack up my things – I feel I must assume that I’ll be travelling on Thursday and be ready. If it doesn’t come up, I’ll waitlist again for Friday, and so on, so fingers crossed.
I ruthlessly sorted out what I needed to take home, jettisoning non-essential printed matter (I’ve picked up kilos of materials from organisations in Singapore) and some old clothing and underwear that is at the end of its tether. The packing doesn’t look too bad – the rucksack, the big suitcase and the suit pack, plus the laptop and a carry-on bag should do it. Ric came home around six but was again unwell so went straight to bed after basic civilities. Ryan apparently working late, as I hadn’t heard him when I crashed at around 10.30pm.