After my overnight stop at Butterworth I was up early to stock up for the day on the train. However, things didn’t start too well as the restaurant that the night before had told me that they were open 24 hours a day, was now closed. “Holiday!” explained the guy cleaning the place.
I finally found some breakfast and bought some food and drink supplies, and made my way to the station, ready for the long day ahead. With typical Asian efficiency, there was no sign of the train at 7am, and it finally arrived at around 7.30. It was almost an hour late when we set off at around 8 o’clock.
The time was never made up, and at the end of the day, we were supposed to get in to Singapore at 9.30pm, but were an hour and a half late. By then the local rail link to the airport had stopped, and I had to get a taxi, negotiating in Aussie Dollars, as I had no Singapore currency, and there was nowhere open to change money, and no cashpoint either!
Anyway, I finally made it to Changi airport, and am now sat on the cold floor at midnight, waiting for check-in to open around 5am – another long night ahead!
I have been pretty lucky with the flight to Christmas Island. Because the timing of the migration of the crabs has always been a bit vague, I have held off buying a flight, until dates became a bit firmer. There is only one flight to the island per week, coming in from Kuala Lumpur, and I eventually decided that Saturday 28th November would be the ideal date to fly in.
However, by the time I had made my decision, something had happened with the airline that ran the flights from KL, and a new airline had stepped in to fill the gap on a temporary basis. The new flights are now from Singapore to Christmas Island, and the big advantage is that with Singapore being closer than KL to the island, the flight is now cheaper by $200. It’s still not fantastically cheap, as you really are a bit of a captive audience – it’s the only way to get there from Asia, unless you sail.
The downside is that the new, temporary service ends tomorrow too, so as far as I can tell at the moment, I am on the last flight in from Asia, with no idea when, or even if, the next flight will return to Asia! Oh dear!