Actually you know I don’t know why I call it The Great Escape as basically we’re tunnelling out of Singapore only to put a big U-turn in the tunnel to try and come back every 30 sodding days.
Yes my friends Singapore has started to do that to us AGAIN. We now have to exit Mary AND Baby Jude now every 30 days. Very frustrating and ultimately very expensive for us as a family. We still await MP appeal No3, and we still have all the stuff going on in Philippines which just seems to be taking for ever.
Any way to the point of this. Yep we have to exit again to get our 30 days extension.
So let’s have some fun doing it and off we jolly well go to Bintan, and a new place for us Nirwana Resort – actually part of Nirwana Gardens complex. And very nice it was too. I will be doing some separate food blog stuff for the food experiences and all that, so shall keep this on to exactly that – the family (funny for those that don’t know I now write a recipe column for a magazine here and have also been asked now to do restaurant reviews – ha ha – they call me a food author – classic).
Couple of slight issues with Nirwana that I gave not experienced before when staying in Bintan (maybe though because we have 5 of us when travelling though now and therefore bigger room), was that we rocked up on the usual 1110 ferry, which lands at 1110 local time due to hour difference. We get to the hotel circa midday to be told room is not ready until 1500. So what do we do for 3 hours with no suitcase yet, a baby, 2 kids, buggy, back pack, baby bag and Amy’s wheelie??? Hmmmm. So not a brilliant start to the experience of a new venue. But they did get us in at 1400 eventually – to a lovely family room, on ground floor, 2 seconds from beach/pool/massage etc. NICE!!!
It was also p*ssing down when we got there, We have had no rain for 3 months, we go away for like 2 days and BOOM the heavens open – “well that is just typical isn’t it…”
But we still had fun, we liked the resort, we had some brilliant food, and some laughs – and hey we got back in to Singapore and we got another 30 days grace for Mary and Baby Jude. Not ideal but better than nothing in my book!!!
Some more on our wee trip for you to hopefully enjoy.
As I said we arrived to pouring rain and no room – OK off to lunch we went, bags in tow. A nice little affair, mixed bag of Indonesia and Western. Not bad. Back up to reception to sit and wait it out, both the weather and getting a room. Getting a little twitchy when at 1400 we had a room.
Off we jolly well trot to unpack, and now get changed as the sun started to peak through. To the beach says I. Ollie notices a ‘watch out for tar on the beach’ sign, and yep there was loads of it, small slicks crashing up to the beach, a bit whiffy too and specks of it all over the sand. So not much swimming in the sea done, but the gang still had fun.
Still beautiful curving beaches of powdery coral based sand. Ollie and Amy rand ahead to allow me to show you that. It was indeed very beautiful.
180 degree spin, and I spot this real cool palm tree, literally growing out at 40 degrees, beautiful against the now blue sky back-drop.
Far away is the place we stayed at last time we forayed to Bintan – Banyan Tree Resort. That place was priceless as in bloody good but also same as in expensive. Looks lovely from here.
Ollie makes sand balls – very boyish.
Amy drawers out hopscotch ‘pitches’ – very girlish.
And she’s off.
Hopscotch, cross-stitch, miss-match – hey whatever it is called she had fun fun fun.
Mary and Jude now enter the photos.
My wee-man’s first trip oversees and literally it was as we came by ferry.
He had great sea legs, better than his Mum.
It seems he is a natural traveller and actually only got grumpy when we ‘stopped’.
He sure is an ‘eyes wide open’ child – absorbing any and everything going on.
See he couldn’t even look at the camera when I asked him, I think he was looking at Ollie and Amy.
The view now down the beach. My bigger gang now all on the beach for the first time together overseas. Gonna need a mini bus soon to cart us all around.
My turn, my turn.
Yeah yeah alright – I can here what you are saying…
He’s 45 and wearing shorts that a teenager should be wearing. He is a father after all, a father of three in fact. Goodness me he should show some respect to his age and act accordingly.
Nah – sod that!!!
Me and Baby Jude – beach time with Daddy. He is awake I promise!!!
Amy now decides she wants to do Bunjy – wow brave little thing.
Sorry Ollie I have to…
Ollie also wanted to do it. BUT, can you guess?
Yep he is too “big” to do it now.
Basically they had no harness that would fit round his tummy – ha ha ha!!!
We did have a giggle – but he stormed off. Sorry matey!!!
She really got the hang of this.
But every now and then soared a little too high.
“Stop, stop I want to stop…”
“OK let’s do it again…”
She had a ball.
Wow that is high.
We tried to get her doing back-flips, but for time No1 that was a no no.
Fair enough Amy – well done for what you did hun.
“Is it a bird?”
“Is it a plane?”
“No it’s SuperAmy…”
I am really not 100% though if she was enjoying herself…
What do you think?
Yep I agree.
Jude watched on intently as his sister bounced all over the place.
Can you hear me Jude…
Blink if you can…
move an eyebrow…
OK, and “Oooooohhhh” will do mate!!!
Phew was worried there for a minute.
Then it was trampoline time for Ollie and Amy.
Both off the ground.
Amy looks like some Indian Guru, levitating thanks to Ollie’s bouncing.
Off to the pool to cool.
Washing feet with petrol to get off the tar.
Few drinks poolside with the kids, including one of the best Bloody Mary’s ever.
Great food that night at the Japanese restaurant 2 minutes walk from our gaff – Rin – but more of that on food blog.
A nice early night – refreshed.
Oh shit moment in the morning though – the day we are to sail back home.
BOOM goes a storm.
I spot a beautiful occurrence outside on the roof of our balcony though as the storm starts to pass.
I was outside and noticed loads of poo piling up in the corner.
Either Ollie got lost in the middle of the night and could not find the loo or something has a nest.
Phew it was the latter.
A House Martin family had set up above our balcony door.
So I set the camera to sports mode and snapped away showing some of the best below.
A little nest with I think 2 or 3 babies in it.
Mum would swoop around with Dad chasing flies and insects, the whoosh in to the balcony to cough up what they had caught (literally) and would rest there for 1 or 2 seconds to feed a few mouths, then dive back out for the every continuing hunt for more food.
Humbling to watch.
Even more humbling because I am about 4 feet away wearing a bright orange t-shirt.
Clearly I had to keep very still.
Look at this – Mum is feeding baby.
I showed Amy, and she said:
“But Mum doesn’t stick her head down Jude’s throat when she’s feeding him…?”
(I’m joking, I’m joking)
I love the one below.
She has dispatched the load and flap she’s off.
A mother back in flight and baby in the nest with insect in beak.
Remember that orange t-shirt?
I moved once and straight away she spun and looked straight at me one time when she landed.
Sorry Mum, you’re chicks are safe with me.
Blimey reminds me of my youth – I used to say that to all the Mum’s…
Our last lunch.
Jude seriously having a whale of a time.
Squealing and giggling – but why???
Yep the other two were going bananas for him.
Sorry Ollie I only got one of Amy – remember he got tired from laughing so much.
Well done you two – you sure know how to make Baby Jude the smiler he is.
Luxury on the way home.
And this was it on a brand new ferry.
It was like a flipping lounge – LOVED it.
So so cool, nice and relaxing ahead of the panic that may lay ahead.
Nice look Ollie!!!
Jude clearly has his sea legs firmly sorted.
He loves a trip on a boat this one.
Well Jude get used to it pal.
Because mate until we do indeed get things sorted, we’ll be doing a trip every sodding 30 days.
The Great Escape Part V – a release coming to your screens and a theatre near you soon.
Watch this space readers!!!