The next day, after celebrating CVCC’s 1st Anniversary and receiving my ordination and new appointment, we left for Bintan Lagoon Resort for our family vacation. Yes, a whole week together!
Serene had done an awesome job, packing for seven children. Everything was ready the night before, save for a few last items in the morning. Loaded with bags and kids, our two cars headed for Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal. Traffic was very smooth and weather was great. We reached there in good time, checked in, cleared immigration and even had a few moments to take some photos before boarding. The children were all excited and looking forward to this break. The ferry left on time too and we arrived in Bintan within an hour, cleared Bintan immigration and before we knew it, we had arrived at our holiday destination! Praise God for journey mercies!!!
After lunch, we checked into Cempaka Villa 50, unpacked and got ready for a week of fun in the sun! And that was the pattern over the next days as we explored the pools, the beach, the restaurants and the leisure centre … swimming, sliding, soaking, splashing, sandcastle building, jumping waves, snookering, carrom-ing and even Wii-gaming where the older kids tried their hand at bowling, tennis, golf and baseball.
It was nice break for all of us – although with seven children, it was really not much of a break 🙂 Serene had her hands full with Anna Joy; and I was physically stretched being with the other children. We had to keep extra vigilance at the beach and pool to make sure all the children were safe in the water. We had a little scare at the pool when our 2 yr-old tripped in the pool and went under. Serene was nursing the baby a distance away, and could only watch helplessly. I was over at the opposite end of the pool, sliding with the others. Thankfully, Aaron (who was closest to her) reacted promptly and pulled Deborah out of the water. At the beach, as Ruth and Deborah went to fill their buckets, a big wave came in and rocked their balance. Ruth tottered as the strong current pushed her along and Deborah cried out for help. Thank God both regained balance and composure rather quickly, otherwise, it would have posed a big challenge for me if I had to jump in.
On the final night, we decided to give ourselves a treat … BBQ at the Villa!!! And what a treat it was … sirloin steaks, minute steaks, lamb chops, chicken drumsticks, prawns, squids, salad and fresh fruits … YUM! What a nice way to wrap up our family vacation.
The next day, Saturday, we checked out and began our journey back home. The young ones were tired out and the waiting didn’t help at all. To add to that, the ferry had a faulty engine and that delayed the arrival time by 40mins – not fun at all 😦 When we finally reached Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal, we rushed to get our bags and drove off quickly for dinner – a simple meal at Bishan Kopitiam, then off home to bed.
This has been our longest vacation as a family, 2-7 Nov, Monday to Saturday. Truly, we thank God for providing for everything. Even as we thought about having a holiday, a brother emailed me, saying he’d like to contribute something. Over the weeks, others blessed us financially. Before we left for Bintan, our holiday had already been fully paid for – praise the Lord!!! We were able to enjoy ourselves and not worry about how we were going to afford this or that! What a joy and privilege! Our God takes care of everything 🙂