STEP right up, ladies and gentlemen, step right up. Feast your eyes on this magnificent creature. It's bigger than the Singapore Flyer, it's faster than a Formula One race car, it's the first-of-its-kind original Singapore Flyer, nay, integrated resort on wings - the Singapore Airlines A380 jumbo jet.
That's right, folks, it's just rolled off fresh from the factory in Toulouse and ready for its maiden flight to Sydney on Oct 25 - yes, that flight which was put up for auction with first-class seats going for as much as $100,000.
We know now just what the guy who paid a hundred grand is going to get - literally breakfast in bed in the 'beyond first class' private cabin with its double bed and sliding doors. Of course, it does make you wonder just how SIA is going to price that cabin once it starts its commercial flights.
Like, is the cabin for one person or two? If it's for one person, does that mean the second person gets to fly for free? Or if not, does it mean that only couples can book these cabins?
What about if you're a high-flying CEO flying first class for work (without a partner) and you want that cabin because of the bed? Do you have to share the cabin with a fellow passenger who is also flying solo? Will you be forced to share your bed with a stranger? Who gets to choose which side of the bed he gets to sleep on? And what if one wants to watch TV while the other wants to sleep?
And yes, we certainly agree it would be most lovely for super-wealthy honeymooners, especially given the privacy of the doors. The next question would be: Is sex allowed in these cabins? Are you allowed to sleep naked?
Wouldn't it be rather embarrassing if you were in the throes of passion and the stewardess woke you up for the breakfast service?
And if it can be proved that a baby was conceived on one of these flights, would the child get to fly for free for its entire life? Oh, and by the way, does it come with an attached bathroom?
Now, of course, I can hear certain rumblings among many of you, along the lines of "Waddaya mean only Changi and Sydney airport can take the A380 at the moment? I don't wanna go to Sydney. What's the point of going to Sydney when what I really want is more capacity to Europe so I can actually get a seat?"
Well, okay, there's still a bit of a wait before you can fly some place other than Sydney (and really, for a seven-hour flight those double beds are so wasted).
Still, we're proposing to the management that maybe for those who want to experience the A380 first-hand, it could offer paid tours of the plane when it's not in service.
Of course, some precautions would have to be taken to ensure that visitors don't filch the toiletries or bedsheets or try to prise the TV screens off their stands. The tour prices would also naturally be tiered - that is, with different prices to view economy class and first class. For a bit more, you could get access to all classes, with a 10- minute nap on the double bed thrown in. We won't be surprised if, after these tours, we'll start reading home design trend stories about how people are re-doing their bedrooms to look like first-class cabins.
Whatever it is, the new A380 has got to be the coolest thing to hit Singapore for a long time. Now, all we have to do is make sure no stowaway tries to hide in its nose wheel . .
Top photo: AP