Monday, October 12, 2009

Little India on a Sunday night was lighted up with festive Deepavali lights. The crowds that congregated on the narrow streets off Serangoon Road were the usual foreign workers enjoying their well-earned day of rest. I have never been to Little India on a Sunday night and walking from the carpark that was a few streets away from Serangoon Road, I felt like I was entering into a sea of humanity.

Ordinarily, I would steer clear of places that are crowded but yesterday was an extraordinary day and I found myself in a place where the women I came across could be counted on the fingers of both hands two times at the most. Other than the colourful lights swaying above the streets, the Indian tidbits on sale, a musical event happening below a huge white tent, Little India at that time did not make me feel like it was any different from any other Sunday that I imagine would be like.

Foreign workers were sitting or standing around, on the move, quequing up to remit money home, quequing up to withdraw money from the ATM, buying groceries and making calls on their handphones. I was pleasantly surprised that I was able to walk through all that crowd and traffic with ease. I think people did not push their way through and somehow all that time of being crammed into a small area every Sunday have given them a familiarity with every curb and corner and they knew how to weave their way efficiently around traffic and other people without making them feel intimidated in any way.

This post is for the foreign workers who build our roads, our houses, our flyovers and make our city a beautiful one. To these hardworking people, I am thankful for their labour and I wish them a Very Happy Deepavali!

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