Friday, June 28, 2013

Kampong mentality needed

We are just back from a family vacation to Penang. It was a great 3 days of playing in the pool and the beach although by today, it wasn't so much that we the parents needed a break from the kids (although we did!), it was that they needed a break from each other.

Anyway, we went with my parents and the last time we travelled with them, the twins were 1 and we went to Bintan.

I'm not sure how much I am  going to blog about this trip since it was only 3 days long. But one thing that kept coming back to me was the fact that JED have been spoilt silly by creature comforts in Singapore.

Things they could not deal with.

1. The general non air-conditioned side of Penang which was everything aside from our hotel room. Even the restaurant was non air-conditioned. Evan took to asking whenever we announced we were going some where "Is it air-conditioned?". The answer "no" was always met with a sigh and slouched, defeated shoulders and sometimes a whine from Jordan.

The only way to get round the heat, strip the boys' tops

2. Dirty, wet toilets. I can't blame them but I don't remember being so fussy when I was that young. But then again, when I was that young, I suppose all toilets were wet and dirty and that was the default state of bathroom affairs. Evan would not go to the toilet till we got back to the hotel. Jordan would insist we leave where ever we were to go somewhere cleaner with a toilet she could use. Or she would threaten to pee, ironically, in the drain!

3. Insects; flies, bees and cockroaches. They were all over the place. Flies weren't discerning; they bugged us at breakfast at the hotel as well as on the road and at the hawker centre. Because we had told JED that they couldn't eat anything when a fly landed on it, they took it seriously and declared half their food inedible because a fly landed on the rim of the plate/ glass/ bowl. Muffin would freak out if he tried to swat a fly and the fly refused to budge; he didn't buy 'the fly was probably dead' explanation at all.

We went to a fruit farm where there were not only flies, there were bees. Evan was beside himself trying to swat flies and run away from bees at the same time. They only sat still because we told them running around would make them hotter than they already were and the only way to prevent the bees from coming round was to finish their mango juice.

4. Sand everywhere. This was more Muffin. The twins are way past having issues with sand but poor Muffin hates sand stuck to the soles of his feet. Because we are going away at the end of the year again to somewhere with lots and lots of sand, we saw Penang as an initiation of sorts. Unceremoniously, despite the whining and crying and begging to be carried, we plonked him in the middle of the beach. To get off the sand, he had to trek 20 m back to the hotel. It didn't stop him from futilely dusting sand off all his skin surfaces.

Another act of futility; trying to return the sand to the sea, in an effort to lessen the offending grains of sand stuck to his feet, legs, arms and face.
Hopefully, the next time we take them somewhere less developed than Singapore, there will be fewer complaints and wig outs with more coping mechanism at hand!

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  1. First world bugbears indeed! I think I have become very spoilt myself. When eating out with the kids in Sgp, I tend to favour aircon outlets that have high chairs...

  2. L Lee,
    You're right. We perpetuate it quite a bit of the time, in the name of hygiene and we 'bubble' them as a result! Do also wrong. Don't do, also wrong. :)