Sunday, January 06, 2013

What I did on Sunday

It's been a rather long day.  I went to bed early last night and got up early this morning and took a taxi over to the MacRitchie Reservoir to run five kilometres.  I did this about a month ago but missed the start of the run, and the next chance to run it officially isn't until the start of February, but I thought I'd try it today to see how well my training is panning out.

I arrived at MacRitchie Reservoir just after seven. I'd missed the start of another run: the MacRitchie Running Club had set up a tent and a big barrel of Gatorade, and then had all gone off on their Progression Run. I wasn't feeling at all progressive, so I played with a brown and ginger cat that I met by the car park, and then went off on my run. It felt harder than when I ran it a month ago, but I went 4 seconds per kilometre faster than before, and I actually managed to run the whole course, rather than turn around 300 metres earlier than I was meant to, so that's a victory of sorts. It was rather anti-climatic to return to the start and find no crowd of people cheering me, so I stretched my legs and then walked down to the bus stop.

I missed the 166 by about 30 seconds, which was good luck, because it was going in the opposite direction to what I needed, but then after I crossed the road I missed the 166 going in the right direction by about 15 seconds, and had to stand around sweating for another 10 minutes before the next one appeared. At eight in the morning the bus was full, of people going to church and little old men coughing like their lives depended on it (which, if they had TB, was probably the absolute opposite - I'm not sure if that's as prevalent among men of a certain age in Singapore as it was in Hong Kong, and would rather not find out by succumbing to consumption). I got home, had a bit of breakfast and then we went out to the zoo.

Normally we're slipshod and lazy and get to the zoo about lunchtime, when it's hot, crowded, and the animals are all sleepy. We hadn't realised that if you go much earlier, it's more pleasant because it's not so hot, you can see more because there aren't huge crowds, and there's more to see because the animals are rather more active than later in the day.

We saw an ostrich that was very pleased to see us:

We saw a pair of large cats, one of which was a lot pleased to see the other than the other was:

We saw a bird with an almost Mondrian-styled beak:

... and a sloth and some flying foxes squabbling over lunch:
That was almost too much excitement for one day, so we got a taxi back from the zoo to Chinatown, where I purchased some possibly ill-advised smoked cheese, and then went to bed for my mid-afternoon nap.

Sadly, my body had other plans, and after ten minutes I jerked awake, and had to busy myself doing things rather than fall back into blissful slumber. My wife, meanwhile, was dead to the world for an hour. Lucky her. We watched a rather boring MotoGP race from 2012, then went out to dinner with a future colleague of mine. Dinner was at an Italian restaurant that we last visited when we were so drunk we couldn't speak properly but it turned out to be pretty good when we were sober: a dessert of chocolate mousse and pickled pear turned out to be just what I needed, before going home to dry some dishes and put myself into the right frame of mind for Monday morning.

Oh, and I managed to fit in one of my resolutions by shuffling some cards.  I'm showing some signs of improvement, as I hope to demonstrate this week.


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