Yup. you read correctly!
And Worth. Every. Penny!
Why, you ask would we spend that much on an ice cream sandwich??? Well it's a bit of a story.
We had a purposefully planned 8 hour layover in Singapore on our way to Bali, Indonesia and our #1 goal during this layover was a to locate and consume a traditional Singaporean ice cream sandwich. The kids had seen an episode of The Amazing Race a long time ago where the racers had to sell these unique treats as part of their race day. Totally intrigued by a sandwich (complete with bread) made of ice cream, that kids were certain they wanted to go there and try one. So, as we have been traveling, they have continued to desire to stop in Singapore for a very specific street vendor confection.
So, upon arriving in Singapore with this one goal on our minds we discover it is POURING DOWN rain!!!! We went as far as we could by train and then Paul went out into it to get us a taxi We stayed under cover aways back from the street out of the rain.
Cute side note: Paul left the intersection and went down the street where we could not see him (we didn't know he had seen an awning to get under while still trying to flag down a taxi). Alia, comments matter-of-factly, "It's ok, Daddy will always come back for us." I love that simple trust.
Back to the story...we meant to search for a street vendor selling these sandwiches. As if the rain wasn't enough of a complication, we learned that Sunday afternoons are a low time for percentage of street vendors out selling their wares.
However, for us this just meant a bigger challenge. We were serious about not boarding our plane out of the city until we had ice cream in our bellies! And we we're going to settle for any ice cream other than an ice cream sandwich made with white bread.
We stopped for lunch and the kids started complaining of being chilly. This is Singapore, and all the guides remind readers it's going to be hot, VERY hot in Singapore... however they never talked about it being overcast, ~65 degrees and all of us being wet from rain.
What were we thinking getting ice cream for our kids when they were cold?
The evidence pointing toward our success was looking bleak after we had eaten lunch, ridden 3 trains and taken 2 taxis...and still no sign of a ice cream street vendor! We decided to just walk Orchard Road, the main street of the shopping district, as that is where the highest number of pedestrians persisted in spite of the torrential precipitation. We walked for a while inside a mall to get out of the rain and emerged at the street once again. Ah-ha! Paul spied a red umbrella down near the street. We were elated! However, as we got closer we noticed that his cart was all covered up (maybe because of the rain we thought). Paul ran down to him and asked is he would sell us some ice cream sandwiches. No, he would not because it was raining. Paul came back and we discussed the situation. We decided I would go and try again and take 2 kids with me, maybe the sight of them would soften his resolve. Nope, he seemed very certain he would sell no ice cream while it was still raining.
Disappointed, but not deterred from our goal, we pressed on down the street as Paul thought he saw more red umbrellas a block or so down (we weren't sure as there were MANY umbrellas that day!). We popped into another mall and back out again further down. Sure enough, another solitary red vendor umbrella! This time, he was open and ready! The kids were overjoyed!
The bread was pink and yellow swirl and the ice cream flavors: purple yam (already tried this in the Philippines and love it), raspberry ripple, choco chip, corn (tried this for the first time and found it surprisingly yummy), peppermint, blueberry, chocolate, mocha, and the ever present Durian (tried it in the Philippines--no thanks!!!)! The vendor cuts a slab of ice cream off a block of the desired flavor and pops it in a folded piece of swirl bread. SUPER TASTY! Better than any of us expected! You can choose to have your ice cream in the sandwich bread, between wafers that are flat but similar to cones in taste and texture, or scooped into a regular cone.
We planned to do this for months.
We added a stop in Singapore at $400 for the 6 of us.
But the cost of the Singapore Ice Cream Sandwiches?
We found an indoor play yard for the kids to run and climb for a while and then decided to go back and get one more sandwich before we flew out! Why not? It was the only reason we were in Singapore. The rain had ended by then and there was a line down the street to the corner from our singleton vendor! Guess it pays to stay out in the rain!
It cost us $400 extra for the 6 of us to stopover in Singapore rather than fly straight to Bali...and we bought 11 sandwiches. for a grand total of $411. Either those ice cream sandwiches are REALLY expensive or see the cost of the experience of being in Singapore and the kids getting to accomplish a goal they had been wanting to attain for a long time and realize those sandwiches were priceless.
See the video here
Next stop, Bali!