An Oasis Of Calm

Even in the midst of major upheaval, my favorite hotel in the world cocooned us in its nearly transparent embrace. You’d never know the traffic howled outside on Bras Basah Road, the construction whirring behind scaffolding on the hotel itself—and the chaos we felt in our lives—as we checked into the Raffles in Singapore last summer.

A special time for us, five years since first meeting, and so much water under the bridge it felt right to celebrate where we had been before, oceans away. This time I traveled there across the Indian Ocean, completing my first around-the-world journey, a circumnavigation in segments, spaced out in years.

I would soon wrap myself in the the quiet of the room that evening we arrived, but first I needed to escape to the veranda with a Tiger beer to watch the rain fall. The next morning we’d walk in the botanical garden while the sun rose, with the bird songs rising up around us. A good night’s sleep, a bedtime story, a place to feel like home, even though we’d flown through nearly as many time zones as there are hours on the clock.

I imagined staying a month or two, writing a novel, perhaps spending my waning days conjuring stories from the air. Someday.

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