/bɪ ə gʊd gɜ:l/ n. moniker of she who blogs here [also known as, bie]; adj. personal awesome advice to all female kiddos

meet the fam #thechennies

meet the fam #thechennies

The past Monday was a public hol so we had ZX all to ourselves. Actually, not quite, he had to go back to camp for IPPT in the morning. But after that, we had him the rest of the day. He planned for us to go cycling so I pictured a leisurely ride along East Coast Park with the wind blowing in my hair and us stopping for a picnic of sandwiches and drinks while the girls busied themselves in the sand.

As if.

The husband brought us to Punggol Waterway Park instead and I ended up huffing and puffing until I was red in the face, because this happened:

Before you scream murder at us plonking the baby in the basket, please know that she was pleased as punch to be in pole position - although my heart was in my mouth as I struggled to balance my newfound back AND front load, and Bieny's head (and neck) bopped around precariously.

Here's a breakdown of our route, me on bike with Bieny in baby seat, Bielet on her trike and ZX on his scooter. When Bielet got tired, she would hitch a ride on ZX's scooter. That was the plan, anyway.

Modified from original NParks map
(Source: www.nparks.gov.sg)

-- Part 1: Popeye's to Lorong Halus Wetlands
-- Part 2: Lorong Halus Wetlands to Punggol Road
-- Part 3: Punggol Road to Water & Sand Play Area near Sentul Crescent
-- Part 4: Sentul Crescent to Punggol Central (the in-laws' place)

Now that I see the distance we covered, I find it quite hard to believe my legs could still function the next day. Note: You'll realise the photos increase in scarcity as this post progresses. Please pardon the mother's exhaustion and inadequacy at doubling up as coolie and photog.

{Part 1: Popeye's to Lorong Halus Wetlands}
Once we got onto proper cycling track, Bielet started zooming around on her trike. Well, maybe zoom is stretching it, more like slow mo z-o-o-o-o-o-o-m. Bieny wasn't too happy just sitting in her baby seat - probably because all she could see was (my) ass - so I had to ride around to pacify her. By the time we reached the bridge towards Lorong Halus, Bielet was nowhere in sight.

At the start of our trail: Spot the little trooper!

Don't worry, the police vehicle was just waiting for the pedestrians and cyclists to thin out before driving onto the bridge. You can see Bielet on her tricycle and ZX walking next to her, right?

ZX gave up scooting and just walked. Lol.

We later realised that the baby seat wasn't adjusted properly, that's why Bieny is so low down in this picture. She kept patting my bum while I was cycling. Maybe she was trying to tell me to prop her up higher?

Sulky because she didn't have her afternoon nap. She stayed up throughout our 2 hours+ excursion!

{Part 2: Lorong Halus Wetlands to Punggol Road}
At Lorong Halus, we breaked for snacks and while Bieny and I slacked at the pit stop, ZX brought Bielet to tromp around. And disturb a wedding shoot in progress. Tsk.

Bielet giving the exact non-smile smile that has become ZX's signature. Sigh.

On her way to crash the wedding (photoshoot)

Bielet took this paparazzi styled shot! Funny!

Bieny and I stood guard over our vehicles. As you can see, the washi tape project on my bike is still a WIP!

Bieny is like, can we go off already?!?!?!?! Shoooo cute.

Across the bridge, Bielet apparently took a fall (I went ahead with Bieny already) and she thought for a moment before declaring she was tired and done with triking. So ZX hiked her trike onto his backpack and they scooted off. I didn't get a chance to take a shot of them two because they were too quick for me. Bah.

There is still quite a lot of construction going on so there are no pitstops for snacks or drinks (unless you bring your own). And it will be quite peaceful and scenic in future, I suppose, like ten years down the road.

{Part 3: Punggol Road to Water & Sand Play Area near Sentul Crescent}
We stopped for a water parade and Bielet really finished all her water, so we had to turn back sooner rather than later. This changeover was actually a bit before Punggol Road but I can't remember the exact location, so there.

Why I can't remember the precise spot is because, Bielet decided that propping herself against ZX's legs on the scooter was too exhausting too. This princess ah......... So while ZX was stretching out his leg cramp, Bielet got into the baby seat and I shifted Bieny up front. ZX took the opening photo (of this post) when we reached Punggol Road because we were wondering whether to continue on the trail or head home.

3B looking on in different directions. Darn, my limbs look so short here.

Against our better judgement, we pressed on. But Bielet was chuffed because we reached a massive sand play area! She got into the pit and tried to make friends but to no avail (possibly because she had no sand toys but the rest had their own) while ZX took over the bike and cycled further front to explore. Of course, he moved Bieny back to the car seat -- what do you think we are, child abusers?!?! (There were so many passerbys who took a doubletake at the baby in the basket. I hope we didn't get stomped...) I was too zonked to take snaps by this time so please just use your imagination.

{Part 4: Sentul Crescent to Punggol Central (the in-laws' place)}
After dusting off our little sand monster, we resumed our positions - 3B on one bike, ZX on the scooter and started our ardous journey home (in-laws' home). Seeing as ZX is more familiar with the estate, I followed his call to take a shortcut back. What we failed to realise was that the ongoing construction has resulted in really uneven and narrow pathways so it was impossible to cycle steadily (me) or scoot continuously (him).

ZX exploded when I flew over a ramp, instead of slowing down like he did, and the kids landed really hard when my bike returned back to earth. It's not like I was trying to be Superman, but I am hardly Dinah Chan. I have an irrational fear of falling (especially so when I am ferrying my two babies) so I tried to continue instead of stopping or slowing down because it's difficult to regain my balance. Falling and scraping myself is fine, but when it involves the girls: NOT FINE.

But when ZX finally simmered down and realised that I was having the most hardest time (bad grammar intentional), he took over the cycling. And I carried the load of his bag with my bag inside and one trike hanging off, and also pushed the scooter along. Please refer back to my irrational fear of falling and note that I cannot scoot. ZX doesn't understand why I can drive but I can't scoot. I don't know either, manz, but all's well and ends well.

We survived. The girls survived. I survived.

I've run along the waterway a few times but cycling is definitely a funner option with the kids, plus you get to cover more ground. Seeing the waterway in computer rendering then (as part of the NDP rally yonks back, and included in the agedeebee recruitment video) and being able to walk it in person now makes me proud of all my former colleagues who worked on the waterway. YOU GUYS ARE AWESOME!

Of course, as compared to ECP, there aren't any nice, shady picnic spots to chill so my idea of a nice, leisurely outing with the fam pretty much went up in smoke. I was so spent by the end of the day, but it was an adventure. Bring on the next cycling expotition (in Winnie the Pooh's words). Heh.


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