Mon Aug II
The final hours. Mrs P was in fine form e.g. late as usual + Dr Scott couldn’t find the house. Not a great start. Then high winds and rain ment we set off 1/2 an hr late. Service on SQ slow. Singapore very hot – quite a change. Hotel Not bad.
My lifelong fear of being late comes to the fore here. Dorothy Parkes was cut from entirely different cloth and, of course, the fact that was had no car of our own meant that we were always in the hands of generous friends, even if their timekeeping drove me bats from an early age.
‘SQ’, for the uninitiated is Singapore Airlines. Everyone else in the family thought they were wonderful. I, sitting in my usual travel position of ‘on my own, as far from the rest of my family as possible’, thought differently and this was entirely due to the fact that I was, I am sure, the last person on the entire plane to be given their dinner. These things matter and I am reminded of this every time some publicist mentions how great their customer service is.
The hotel had the wonderful name of ‘President Merlin’. It isn’t there anymore, but Lisa and Kevin made up a wonderful ‘Pres-i-dent Mer-lin, Ho-tel’ chant which they repeated for months after. My main memories of our stay there are the rooms seeming rather small and warm, the time that Gran snatched Lisa’s cutlery away before dinner in what seemed even to me as a gross over-reaction to her being annoying, and the time that she (i.e. Lisa) walked through the automatic doors to the hotel foyer and stopped too soon, causing them to shut on her head.
I had forgotten another event from this day until my siblings reminded me of it. At Auckland airport, at some point, we were all standing near some escalators. Absent-mindedly I leaned against one of them and the handrail of the ascending escalator carried me upwards, to much hilarity from all below.