The Expat Tourist Guide Part 2: 2 weeks, 3 Brits! 

  1. I look like a sumo wrestler.
  2. My liver probably needs examining.
  3. I am exhausted.

But my god, what a blast! It’s been amazing having my sister and Humph here. We have been tourists, the apartment has been lively, my Yorkshires have been on tap (thanks Humph!) and thank god there was a vet in the house when Chai got sick!

It won’t be of any surprise being a real foodie fueled by Singapore’s established street food culture and food utopia, that I took the guys to sample some of my favourite foodporn delights. Did you know, that in 2015, even named Singapore the number one best street food city in the world…now that’s a bit amazeballs.

There have been so many places we have been that I have selected my top 5 favourite must-eat/must-visit places:

1. Sin Hoi Sai

A cool, laid back local gaff on the East Coast. It’s always heaving with both locals and expats so I will always gravitate to places like this, there has to be something attracting people here right? And man, there is. Friendly aunties and uncles (albeit very direct!), wallet-friendly dishes whipped up on demand with the opportunity to wash it all down with Tiger beer. Oh and not to mention it’s open until 5am….perfect on the way home from a night out and I have the munchies!

Sin Hoi Sai: 187 East Coast Road, Singapore, 428893

2. Satay Street, Lau Pa Sat

Lau Pa Sat is an open air food court, locally named a Hawker Centre which houses stalls from every cuisine you can think of! It’s proudly situated in the middle of the CBD at 18 Raffles Quay. It was originally a wet market in the 19th century and was designed by none other than a Brit! And then revamped by a Scotsman – how cool! It’s immensely popular, you can get tasty filling meals for under $10 so no wonder you see people hotfooting through as they grab their gourmet delights. What I love about Lau Pa Sat is that at 7pm daily, Boon Tat Street which runs alongside, is closed off, plastic tables and chairs fill the road and a line of BBQs are fired up. Aunties swarm the area with offerings of Tiger beer, Uncles appear every few minutes hoping to sell tissues as satay can be a messy affair! One tip: don’t eat for a while beforehand and be prepared for a real food baby!

3. Jumbo Seafood Gallery

I haven’t been here for 5 years and daaaam I enjoyed it! Jumbo prides itself on fresh seafood and their main rockstar is Singapore Chilli Crab. So undoubtedly, that was on the menu along with the sweet buns you get to dip in the sweet chili sauce, combined it’s luscious. This is however, another messy affair, gloves and bibs are provided when you pick up your tools to get shell cracking!

Singapore Chill Crab: Jumbo Seafood Gallery, The Riverwalk, Singapore, 058416

Of course, we didn’t just eat…

4. What a RIOT!

I’m not sure where to start with this. I laughed so hard I had to take my inhaler…twice! This was a Saturday night to remember.

Imagine full on cabaret, pretty amazing outfits, extravagant hilarious performers and 3 sets of eyelashes – this is drag queens at their best. 9 friends surrounded the stage in a packed Shanghai Dolly, drinks were flowing whilst the stage lit up with side-splitting raunchiness and took us by storm. Time to get involved, keep an open mind and don’t look like you’re not impressed as they will come to greet you personally, as poor Humph found out (sorry but that was one of the inhaler moments!). If you want a slapstick hysterical night, make sure you book tickets! Meet your host Becca D’Bus feat. Amy Tatiana, Mona Kee Kee, Noristar, The Vajayjays and my fave Vyla Virus!

5. The Exchange, Asia Square

IT’S QUIZ NIGHT! Now you would think this would be more subdued. Wrong. This is a works quiz night with all of our friends and colleagues. What started out as a simple laugh quickly turned into mega competition and ended up being an early hour finish on Boat Quay…that’s just how we roll!

If you’re looking for a decent Quiz Night, go no further. Considering our company took up pretty much the whole space, the staff (a big shout out to Mark!) made the organisation super smooth. Rock up, sit down and they take care of the rest. It’s held every fortnight on a Tuesday, with no entry fee so get yourselves down there and brush up on your general knowledge!

Sharing some of the experiences with you from these 2 weeks is making me smile, reminisce and laugh but sneaking in is a little sadness. My sister and Humph left for the UK last night. One of the hardest things about having visitors is when they leave. We haven’t had much sister time of late so it’s been lovely, introducing them to my Singapore life, where I like to eat, drink and introducing them to my friends. We have laughed and cried but it’s been epic.

In my previous article I shared some tips on preparing for your visitors arrival, now it’s how to prepare for when they leave!

  1. Appreciation – the day they leave is always the worst, it kind of hits home that they are leaving, you are used to them being around. Appreciate that your visitors may also feel a little down. In our case, my sister realized how far away I really am in terms of miles but it has brought us closer with the promise to speak much more often. I bet she so regrets that soon! 🙂
  2. Pamper time – it’s a busy time when you have visitors, especially if they are staying with you, you worry, you want them to have everything they need and want them to have a great time. As the host, working all day and being out pretty much every night can take its toll. Once they leave and normality resumes, it’s important to recharge. What I have found is that doing something relaxing really helps, and instead of waking up feeling lost (like me this morning!), treat yourself and look forward to something, whether it be a naughty breakfast or a massage (in my case today my friend is cooking a roast! Happy days!) and remember the great times you have just shared together.
  3. Emotions – it’s okay to cry when they leave! I always do. Every single time. Be mindful of the fact this may creep up on you, especially when the taxi arrives to take them to the airport. That’s when I tend to freak a little and cling on to them like an adult leech. The way I deal with it is to remember we have just created some amazing memories (I’ll never forget Humph’s addiction to 7-11!) and I think we will be talking and laughing about some of these experiences for years to come.

The Expat Tourist Guide Part 2: Signing out x

In order to prepare for my next visitor in 15 days; my best friend since I was 15 (I told you I had many visitors!)…

  1. I am on another diet.
  2. I am giving my liver a break.
  3. I am sleeping for a month.

N x

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