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The drive up North and home sweet home

After we checked out of the hotel.  We drove through patiently through the congested roads in BKK to their shophouse near Rangsit (I think).   They are into wedding cake business and they wanted to bake a cake for the kids to eat.  Wife's cousin promised her niece and nephew last time in Maesai and she will be doing it before we hit the roads in the evening.  Initially we declined but they insisted that they need to bake some cakes for the Poo Yai Ban (Village head) back in Maesai and other relatives too.  So, it's not a big hassle.

The chocolate cake tastes great and we loaded all into the truck and started off towards Nakhon Sawarn at around 7pm.  My Cousin(brother)-in-law drove the 1st leg while I was in the passenger seats.  The rest of the gang, my wife and her cousin plus 5 kids are at the back.  Her cousin have 3 boys so naturally my boys is having a hell of his time playing with them.  He's the 2nd youngest among the 4.  Cousin's youngest son is only 1+ and keeps looking for his father while we were driving.  

We stopped just outside Bangkok to fuel up and get some snacks for the road trip.  It will be a 12hr+ drive up North with breaks in-between.  At around 12am, near midnight, we've reached  Nakhon Sawarn and I took over.  It's my 1st time driving such a truck and on a strange road.  Initially I was a bit reluctant to go fast but after half an hours of getting used to the car.  I steadily increased the speed.  Driving is much more better than doing nothing in the passenger seat as it keeps me awake.  And the arderline rush of driving in the dark on an unknown road keeps me awake too.  I'm not too sure about my cousin-in-law though as he was so used to driving up North, he just went straight into his nap in the passenger seat after I took over.  I just kept driving and was thinking... man.. I need to do this in the day once in my lifetime to get to see Thailand in another way again!  Wife was a bit worried about me driving so she was awake at the back chatting with her poor cousin.  And she kept asking me if I'm tired anot.... :P  Anway, I was suppose to handover to my cousin-in-law at Lampang but I went striaght on to Phayao, giving him back his driver seat over there at around 430am.  We reached home at around 730am.  A bit faster then ususal as I was speeding at around 2 to 4am.. hehe.. Cousin-in-law is a much safer driver though.. Doing 120 at most ...

Need to plan a road trip next time.  Maybe with some friends from SG.

In the pigeon hole and Bangkok stop over

We didn't went out after the watercove park trip. Wify did went out to Tampines mall for a short shopping trip while I let the kids have some fun at the playground downstairs. Girl is a natural climber like my wife. Boy boy just go crazy with the slides. I think this is one area that is pretty cool about Singapore. We do have plenty of cool looking, safe and clean children's playground (especially in my area).  Basically whenever we are not going anywhere and staying in the flat, we would drop by the playground to let the kids stretch their arms and legs.  A flat in Singapore is small and unlike in Thailand, the kids can't shout or jump in the flat.  Well, I used too but that was the time where people are more tolerant and we are still in a kampung(village) style but not the case now.  I think its better this way too as at least I can teach the kids to be considerate of others.  Not making too much of a ruckus...
So it's a lot of cheap entertainment for my kids :P. We finally took a flight back to Bangkok on the 3rd of April. Boy started to become very chatty on the cab we took from the airport to the hotel in Petchuburi. I think it's because of the familiar Thai they are speaking. Boy do understand Chinese but he is just not like his sister, not willing to speak in Chinese. (even with me as he knows I can understand him)
He was so chatty with the cab driver, speaking of his experiences in Singapore and Thailand that wife and I were just laughing away at his illogical response to the cabbie. Girl does not loose out and shared her experiences too. Pretty entertaining for the long ride as the traffic was all jammed up. We managed to check into the hotel at 7pm and its a very family oriented hotel called Centrepoint Petchaburi. I took the executive suite which allows up to 4 adults in a room.
We settled down and since we had some food on the flight, we didn't bother too much about the dinner. I did went out and bought some McD and the kids had some french fires before we called it a day.
Initially, we planned to stay in BKK for 2 night and wanted to take the bus home but it was full. Song Krang was just around the corner so all were heading back for their new year break. Luckily wife's cousin was heading back to Maesai with her husband and kids and they have a big van like truck that could fit all of us. We had to extend one more night at the hotel as they need to settle some business on the 6th April.
We didn't go anywhere in particular in BKK. Wife was happily shopping at Pratunam next door. Kids were having fun at the hotel's play room for children or a dip at the hotel's pool. We did dropped by MBK to buy a bag for my sister the day after.
Finally checked out on the 6th. Wife's cousin picked us up at the hotel lobby and we went to his house to prepare for a roadtrip back to Maesai.

Singapore revisted part 2 - Watercove Park

This is the new waterpark playground at RWS that just opened just this year. My sis needs to work and my mum needs her rest from yesterday :P So, it's just the 4 of us and I have to say. This park is pretty good.
Boy got all psyched up when we reached the entrance and saw all the rides. I think he would have jumped straight into the water if I have not been there to pull him back. It was nightmare trying to control him when both he and girl girl get excited. Wife was not smart enough to change before we go so we have to wait for her. (Try asking a 3 year old to wait to play... :P) Finally she got dressed and we hopped into the river adventure which takes us all around the entire park. We stopped halfway at the wave pool and have fun at the wave pool and big bucket. It's a pity though as most of the rides are for teens and adults so most of the rides the kids can't take part. Wife and girl did try one of the more adventurous one while boy and I have fun at the wave pool.
We then try to snorkel but boy was too young and not allowed... (Bah) . So we just continued with the river adventure and went back to get some money for lunch. Both of them ate alot this round (replenish all the energy spent. We continued to play at the wave pool and the big bucket playground until I have to pry them out of there. Took some effort but managed to do so by promising them to visit the aquarium next door.
Big mistake. The aquarium was great but boy was all psyched up and tired from the watercove park. So he was just running amok in the aquarium and wife and I took more time trying to calm him down rather than enjoying the display. Girl was ok though and she loved the huge Manta ray in the large aquarium. She asked me how come the Manta like not happy like dat... hehehe.. And the jellyfish. She just stared straight into that tank for minutes...
Again, we managed to leave the island at around 5.30pm and we had our slight early dinner at Sushi Tei at Vivo. Then it's all bus ride again on bus 30 double decked bus. They really enjoy the bus rides as we do not have that in Thailand. This round, boy was wide awake and making engine noises when the bus is moving. Again, we managed to get front seats on the bus. I think next round, I don't need to plan anything. Just take our "World Class Transport" can liao...

All photos in this post taken with my new waterproof phone. Sony Xperia Z

Singapore revisted part 1 - Universal Studios Singapore

This is the 3rd time my wife and kids came over. For this round, it's a bit different as the last 2 trip we came during Chinese New Year. Since my girl started her Primary school formally last year in May. We can't come back during CNY 2013 as she is still in school. (No official CNY in Thailand). Her term break started in the 2nd week of March and will end in May. So I took the opportunity to plan this trip just before the water festival (Song Kran) in April. It's free and easy this time but I bought tickets to Universal Studio and the new Adventure Watercove Park. Since the 2 of them really enjoy playing with water.

It's free and easy for the 1st 3 days in Singapore. My sister took a day leave to be with her niece and nephew at home. We went shopping for some new swimsuits at Tampines Mall next day and took them to the Tampines swimming complex the day after to cool off the hot weather in Singapore. My mum and sis also took them shopping at Orchard and my boy was totally in awe with the amount of toys in Takeshimaya. Ended up my sister bought him a bit transformer toy.

On Sunday, I booked a Maxi cab and the whole lot of us visited the Univeral Studio at Resort World Sentosa. As it was a long weekend (Good Friday). It was a bit crowded but still manageable. Some hiccups did occurred though. The Sesame Street ride was down while we were queuing for it halfway and boy boy was a bit disappointed. We then took the car ride, followed by going through the Waterworld Live Action show. The 2 kids were totally enjoying the explosions and stunts that they wanted to watch it again.... O.o. Took me sometime to pull them out of the theatre.

Then we had Lunch at the Far Far away castle. Girl girl really like the castle as it looks very pretty. We then went for the Far Far away 4d movie. Girl got so high from the 3d effects she tried to snatch the bugs and ghost on the screen.. heheh.. Took a break and enjoyed the Madagascar ride. They had watched the cartoon before so they are aware of the characters. Then the merry go round but its a bit short ride compared to those we have in Thailand. Not even a minute... :P

It started to drizzle when we finished the Merry - Go - Round and we tried to go take the Sesame Ride but it was so packed with people that we skipped it totally. The sound stage opposite was next and the last we visited. I was carrying my boy we got splashed by water in the Live Action Sound stage. Boy was a bit poofed around this time so we decided to call it a day as we have the waterpark the next day. We took the monorail back to Vivo and took a double decked bus 30 home. Boy was sound asleep on the bus while girl girl was enjoying the bus ride at the front seat of the double decked bus.

Reached home around 7pm and we had our dinner at a hawker centre near our house.

A long break

This series of journal actually started in March but I have not found the ample time to write it in full details. Most of them are in point forms and finally I have the time to complete and publish them. My long break starts on the 24th of March. I took a flight back to BKK and took the bus home. It will be a rush for me as the whole family, missus and the 2 kids will be flying back to Singapore and stay at my sister's flat for a week.
I reached home in the morning of 25th and wife fetched me from the bus station. Kids were still sleeping while I arrived. Then it's all packing and going through the normal routine of preparing the food for my dog and asking our neighbours to look after our fish :P
We called for a cab to the airport in Chiang Rai this time as it will be almost 2 weeks away from our home and it does not make sense to leave our car at the airport for that long period of time. It will be an internal budget flight from Chiang Rai to Don Meung Bangkok. Followed by an SIA fight at Suvarnabhumi. There was a 2 to go package for SIA and I splurged on the air tickets this round. The flight from Chiang Rai to BKK is a bit uneventful. Boy was a bit restless though and girl girl's ear pain is not as serious as last time. We reached Bangkok in the afternoon and took the free shuttle to the new airport.
The 2 enjoyed the free shuttle to the airport on the big bus. Looking at the tall buildings in Bangkok and the huge amount of cars and traffic plying the roads and expressway. They got into counting the colourful taxis that they saw on the road. By the time we reached Suvarnabhumi  It was around 2pm. We had lunch and managed to check in at aroung 3pm. The flight was scheduled at 6pm so we had a long wait. The 2 started getting restless and I reluctantly took out the Ipad and allowed them to watch some cartoons on it. By the time we boarded the plane. Both of them was so tired that they fell asleep immediately after the plane took off. We had some trouble waking boy up for the in flight meal... :P
Reached home around 11pm.