Otterman speaks... (2003-2007)
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Otterman speaks...

Cycling, macintosh, natural history and life in Singapore - Archives

List of Categories : travel * museum * cycling * Singapore Naturalist * science * kakis * mangroves * movies * mac and the internet * meow * NUS * life in Singapore * lit * world *

Fri 23 Sep 2005

Back from the US

Category : travel

Cats in the coridoor while the fish thaws.

Jetlag?
The NY - SG flight was a very comfortable 18.5 hours because of this plane - Airbus A3400-500 - only 19 in operation as of August 2005. Big difference from the journey to the US despite the break in Seoul that offered. Even had an adaptor for computer work but I was concentrating on adopting SIngapore time and with the help of melatonin, hope to kick the jetlag.

Jetlag has not kicked in, and some suggest it will do so only after two days. Since I was coherent yesterday when I touched down, Antzzz was stood down from the emergency additional feeding duty for the cats (*thanks Antzzz*). I spent the day unpacking, laundry, sorting out notes and the like. Not a sign I had been away remains. And of course, I got reacquainted with the cats.

Google Maps on this blog
KPW met me for dinner last night to ensure I was back to Singapore timing. I was trying to sneak a late afternoon map rather than write up my report but she roused me out of a dream.

She had been reading this blog for several days after I left for US before realising I was actually overseas. Since she had been in Korea recently herself, we exchanged some interesting notes about recycling habits and she confirmed that the cleanliness of Koreans was no myth!

Oh well, the surprising and cryptic maps on the blog that had her confused were mainly for my reference - I had only a week's notice and was scrambling to ensure various projects were on track and holding off meetings that are now threatening to take over my life. The scramble found me overseas without a map, a really unfortunate state to be in!

Most of the hotels prroided wireless for les than US$10/day, so Google Maps turned out to be a life saver!

Once I realised that most US streets are long roads laid out in parallel lines and criss-crossed at right angles, this made walking about really easy. With the built-in compass in my Timex watch, I was able to navigate back to the hotel once with only an approximate idea of the current location. I had to open my iBook in mid-street to refer to the map, but soon after, one of the long, known roads was intercepted and we were back in the the hotel in an hour - the only good after-dinner walk I had in two weeks.

Mangrove field trip
Today, another coherent day, was the montly high-tide sampling trip. Happily for me two Toddycats assisted today, and ensured I got the job done without lapsing into jetlag and falling asleep on the job. Help was desparately needed with the most prolific crab-catcher in Japan.

The two ladies did a good job, and enjoyed themselves. Both are well suited for the field despite their collapsing style of descent from the boardwalk which was really painful to watch! They were cheerful through the falls and even when we encoutered a Mangrove Pit Viper. Laid out on a tree brach to snooze, it opened its eyes suddenly to focus on us, while we approached it at eye level while submerged up to our necks in water! Well the two of them backed away quietly when it was suggested and continued sampling without batting an eyelid.

Eventually we collected, measured, weighed and released 119 tree-climbing crabs.

Posted at 2:35PM UTC by N. Sivasothi | permalink | , .