West Virginia Executive Summer 2014 - Page 123

Following a quick trishaw ride, which is similar to a rickshaw ride, through colorful Little India, our guide whisked us through a local fish market where the floor was awash with blood, murky water and fish parts. We walked through rows of live frogs, snakes, turtles and lots of fish. The clouds began to darken, and we made it to the Raffles Singapore hotel just before the sky delivered the seasonal rains. After the rain, you could cut the humidity with a knife. Singapore’s signature dish is chili crabs, something we were anxious to try, so we dined alfresco at Seafood Paradise across from Marina Bay Sands Hotel. Wonder Full, Singapore’s nightly outdoor laser light show, bounced lights, lasers and video just across the bay from our table. Chili crabs, whole stir-fried crabs in a thick tomato and chili-based sauce, arrived with a bib and lots of napkins. Once you dive into the chili sauce to retrieve your crab, you’re committed to making a mess of yourself, and it was worth every stain on my white sundress. Our final day in Singapore held a surprise for Delbert. I booked him the ultimate drive: a 60-minute tour behind the wheel of a Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder on the official F1 circuit, a main highway through downtown Singapore. I left him to his experience of driving on the wrong side of the road from the wrong side of the car while I toured the National Orchid Gardens, 60,000 orchid plants consisting of 400 species and more than 2,000 hybrids. You could not take a bad photo; the colors and sizes were remarkable, some blooms as large as melons. I’ll never forget returning to the offices of Ultimate Drive. Delbert’s face was flush, which I mistook for a sunburn earned while driving around Singapore in the convertible supercar. His words were slow, almost slurred, and nearly inaudible. It seems that he “overcompensated” as he rounded a turn. One of the high curbs rose up to meet the tire, hub cap and front bumper of the Lamborghini. We now have two mortgages. This was our second voyage with Seabourn, and this luxury cruise line gets it right: 400 passengers are pampered 24/7 by more than 335 crew members. They knew our names and our drink preferences within hours of stepping on board. The cultures, landscapes, foods and personalities that stretched over thousands of miles were experienced effortlessly by water. Once the Lamborghini is paid off, we’ll look at Antarctica.  Photography by Ginna Royce In all, a fellow traveler summed up our brief, four-day encounter with India’s best: “It was like entering a large, dark warehouse with just a flashlight.” There was so much more to see. www.wvexecutive.com summer 2014 123