Read the 1st blog of this series here: http://combatlifestyle.com/2013/04/day-1-in-singapore-for-one-fc
Fight Week in Singapore for One FC: Tuesday.. and we had plans to head to Marina Bay Sands.. My being sick had definitely kept me from keeping current on my photos and writing. It left me torn.. Do I go to the most insane pool ever on this once in a life time chance, or do I stay home and work? YOLO or Carpe Diem, or whatever modern day version of the saying you want to shout, I was at Marina Bay, tower 1 at 10:48am, a few minutes late but there nonetheless. Heath’s friend came out to give our small group passes before we whisked away to the roof top oasis.
One side of the massive hotel faces out to the shipping channel that many often forget is the lifeblood of this crazy city/state/country. The other side, the zero edge side of the pool over looks the Bay and all of Singapore and off into neighboring countries in the distance. It’s a unique viewpoint to be from if you really step back and think about it. We found chairs to relax in which lasted about 15 minutes before being way too hot and the cool water (in spite of the children) invited us in. I said to Heath, “You just have to not think about whats really in the water, and think that the view and chance to be here outweighs any other thoughts of anything else.”
We spent maybe an hour enjoying the sun and the view; it wasn’t long before the clouds started rolling in and it was overcast. We took a walk down to the opposite end of the roof where the hotel’s rooftop nightclub, Ku De ta’ was located as well as the observation deck that looks like a boat extending off the end of the building. I took photos, video, instgrammed, tweeted, FB’d, vine apped, and more. I made sure it was known that I had been there!
We grabbed lunch in the hotel’s mall before I took off to Heath’s to pack my stuff and move it to the fight hotel. I was going to try and make it back to Evolve to shoot the pro practice by 230 but try as I might- even packed up my bags and took them to the gym with me, I missed it and had to jump back into a cab and continue to the hotel. All checked it, I looked at the inviting bed and drifted away to sleep.
9pm was the last practice at Evolve and even though I had a tough time getting out of bed, I somehow managed and showed up right as the night session was warming up. Chatri Sityodtong was there for this one, overseeing his fighters as a proud king oversees his pride of lions. This was the final practice for the fighters on this weekend’s ONE FC card. This session included other guys than just the fighters although they did keep off to the side to themselves for the remainder of the night.
After practice was over, Heath and I walked a few blocks away to a famous food area called Lau Pa Sat. I took photos of the very non-asian architecture of the structure as we walked through it completely and out the back where at the yakitori style meats were being grilled out back. We picked a spot from one of 20, and while being seated were still trying to be hustled to eat from the other spots. Anywhere you go out here- things are presented in “sets” instead of “combos” as we know in the states. Once we picked our set, 10 beef, 10 chicken, 6 shrimp skewers for $24.00 the others finally left us alone. We enjoyed the delicious meal and then I made my way back to the hotel by cab to call it a night.
Wednesday I had no set plans other than to try and shoot fighters. Today was their day of photoshoots and interviews so Heath met me at the hotel for the breakfast buffett (my favorite) and then headed to the second floor where the fighters were quietly suffering through the necessities of fight week; the photos, videos, medicals, and anything else. I I hung around and took a few photos, spotted Jens Pulver and made plans to wander Singapore w/ he and his crew before before escaping to my room to get some work done.
About two hours later, I was off into the concrete jungle with the Pulver clan, Abel Pulver in the lead dragging our group to Little India on the train for some sight seeing as well as shopping. Jens was quiet as most fighters are this point in the week during their cut. Any weight he may have had left to cut was surely lost while walking around the humid streets of Singapore. The next few hours we checked out temples of various denominations before ending our tour inside the mother of all stores, Mustafa.
I found out about Mustafa the last time I came out to Singapore. This massive store/mall or whatever you want to call it is home to literally almost anything you could possibly need. And I mean anything! Want a economy size pack of every product that tiger balm has ever made? they have it. A special flavored cashew you’ve been meaning to try? A pair of flip flops, a hula hoops, some souvenirs to take home, some odd ointment only your grandma knew about? It’s there. And I don’t care how many times you wander the aisles of this place, you still can’t help but be amazed by it. I caught Jens on one of the many cookie aisles getting lost in a can of chocolate covered potato chips. He was tired though, and it was time to head back to the hotel.
Once back to the hotel, the went to their room and I went in search of food. I walked out the door of the hotel and was not impressed by the food available across the street in the shopping center adjacent to the hotel so I walked in the direction of china town. It took me through what seemed to be Korea town filled with BBQ restaurants that didn’t open till at least 5pm. On the very edge of Chinatown, I came to one of the many food courts of sorts this city seemed to offer and this is where I grabbed a couple plates of roast pork and rice as well as some fresh pineapple juice. This seemed to be enough to get me through the night, and I headed back to my room to bury myself in work.
Thursday weigh in day!! I had breakfast and then got a little time to get out on the town with the One FC Commentators, Jason Chambers and Steve Dawson.
We headed out to check out a few of the local gyms including Evolve MMA Which I had spent quite a lot of time at, Ritual SG which is an HIIT gym. Nadia Daeng who worked for OneFC previously was working there and it was fun to see her.
Then we continued on to Fight G which was a small 3rd story gym that has an outdoor covered roof top area to it. It was the no nonesense type of gym you probably won’t find your grandma working out at. I love some of the buildings I spotted off the roof from there; of course I snapped a few photos.
We were quite hot from all the walking around in the Singapore humidity so decided to make our way over to Boat Quay to find some refreshment. We stubled upon Juggernaut Fight Gym there by accident but we decided there were too many stairs and we were too hot to add that to our visitation list. The requirements for us at this point were: indoors, with Air Con, and a wifi connection. We found both and had a quick drink to cool off before heading back to the fight hotel to relax. And for me to get work done of course!
I think I stayed in my room the rest of the afternoon which tell you the truth I had been doing quite a bit that week. I thnk the cold I caught last week in Thailand killed my energy level and I seemed to have eaten something earlier this week that just wasn’t agreeing with me so I wasn’t feeling 100%. The rythym of work, sleep, seemed to sooth so I have kept to the room as much as possible.
I went to leave the hotel around 6:30 pm to wait in the taxi queue to head to the weigh ins which were being held at The Cathay, a large mall on Orchard Rd. I happened upon some of the One FC Staff and was stuff into a cab with none other than the One FC ring girls.. No complaints, not sure how it happened, I quickly made friends with the two. Something about being female with a camera makes a huge difference I think. Of course I had to get a photo of me with them for my instagram..
There was a large crowd already gathered when we arrived by 7pm. The girls took off to change and I started to set up camp in the media area. Little did I know how crowded it was going to get there momentarily. I already felt bad for the small children waiting at the ropes who I knew would be blocked by the media taking photos. The weigh ins started at 8pm and each fighter successfully stepped to the scale and weighed in and faced off. Most faceoffs went pretty quietly but Victor Cui did step in to block Arnaut Lepont and Eddie Ng from getting too close. Aoki seemed impatient to face off with Boku and followed him to the scale to watch his opponent weigh in. Following the weigh ins, all the fighters stayed to sign autographs for the fans waiting.
Some of the guys from Tiger Muay Thai had made the trip out to Singapore as they had a guy fighting on the card Friday night. I managed to find them as the chaos after the weigh ins ensued and we escaped in a cab to nearby Clarke Quay for a nice quiet dinner. I had never been to Clarke Quay before and was enthralled by it’s night time hustle and lights; lots of retsaurants and nightlife but we grabbed a casual chinese meal before calling it a night. Wow. Can’t believe I haven’t been dragged out to party once thus far this week!