Thursday, December 29, 2011

Sentosa walk

There are three ways to enter Sentosa. You can go in by car paying $2 per person in the car and two dollars for the car. You can take the Skytrain from the top floor of Vivocity and pay $3 per person. Lastly, you can walk along the year-old boardwalk linking Vivocity Promenade and Sentosa island and pay $1 per person and the best part is that you can take the skytrain back for free. The last option is the best when the weather is cool and the sun's rays are mild as was the case this morning. We had to pass through the Integrated Resort where the tourists were concentrated in order to reach the jungle trail for our walk. We spent only a dollar each on Sentosa and nothing could compare to the the lush greenery, the fresh air and the absence of crowds along the jungle trail for a mental and physical recharge. Click on the photo to see the slideshow.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas to all!

For the first time in many years I set up a pretty Christmas tree in my house because my son said that when he was small he had always looked forward to seeing our Christmas tree when he came home from school in the evening. I never knew that the tree meant so much to him. So, it was not very difficult to have the tree back again and not very costly either because everything was from Giant.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Lunar eclipse in Singapore

Tonight there is a total lunar eclipse that I happened to see by chance. I took these shots of the moon at around ten o'clock. The next such event will take place in 2014. I am not a fan of astronomy and so I did not check on the eclipse after spending about 20 minutes looking at the moon. It was enough that I was able to witness a portion of this natural phenomenon.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Not in Singapore

I have been away and I have too many things on my hands and in my head. So I have not been around interesting places in Singapore these past weeks other than walking in the parks. But I have been to MALACCA that was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2008. I have known Malacca since I was a child and the place holds special memories for me. See my post on Malacca here>>>>

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Starry, starry night

Have I come back from a dream
or am I dreaming that I have come back
from a dream 
Whatever it may be, do go to this 
excellent exhibition currently on at 
the National Museum called "Dreams & Reality"
if only to see Vincent Van Gogh's 
Starry, starry night painting.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Deepavali - Celebrating the Indian Festival of Lights

Serangoon Road is the lifeblood of Little India. Singapore celebrates Deepavali with this beautiful light-up along Serangoon Road. Click on the photo to see the slideshow of photos taken as our car cruised through the tunnel of mesmerising festive lights. The shots at the beginning were taken along Geylang Road.

Saturday, October 8, 2011


In a corner coffeeshop next to the West Coast Market, behind a Chinese Temple, I chanced upon this small stall selling the biscuits and sweets of my childhood. These are stuff that my relatives from Malaysia would never fail to bring along for us kids when they came to visit us. My aunt especially would pack her trunk full of these goodies each time she took the train from Ipoh to Singapore. I am not really a fan of these things but I did grow up eating them and have not seen these around in such variety for quite a while. So it was a nostalgic encounter with these Chinese-style biscuits that will one day be repackaged and lose their unique qualities forever.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Beauty World cha cha cha

Beauty World is the title of our home-grown musical based on a local play. I watched it years ago and it brought back so many memories of my growing-up years in the area.  Back then, there was a wet market, filthy and much dreaded by me each time my mum took me there. 

I remember the smell of the grimy drains, the puddles of dirty water, how chicken was slaughtered on the spot once chosen by the customer and how the feathers were hand-plucked by women seated on low stools behind the cages packed with  squawking birds. Those were the days when birds had a good reason to be angry.  

I also remember the dried goods store and how money was kept in a tin that was tied to a string and dangled high above our heads and could be pulled down when the stallholder needed to put money in. Those were also the days before Singapore Pools came into the scene to legalise 4D betting and I often wondered why my mother would make trips to the back of the grocery store to pay money for some numbers to be recorded on a small notebook full of scribbles. Little did I realise that the grocer was also a bookie. 

Next to the market were small wooden stalls that was our shopping centre. If you can imagine one of our heartland malls on a smaller scale and project the image of each shop into a 1960s setting, then you will have an idea of what I am talking about. My relatives from Malaysia love Beauty World for its variety and shopping appeal. I remember the cologne 4711 that was so popular with my aunties. Powder compacts, cosmetics, clothes, shoes, handbags, pyjamas and the list goes on. My family moved into this area when I was in secondary school. We moved out for a year or two when I was in Pre-U and then moved back again. Beauty World never left our hearts.

The Beauty World that I remember with fondness disappeared one year, wiped out by a fire and the place where it stood remained a vacant piece of land for many years. Business carried on in modern shopping complexes and the only reminder of its colourful history was the name - Beauty World Plaza, a far cry from what Beauty World had been. Gone were the wet markets, the clogged drains, the compact wooden stalls, and the friendly stallholders in my memory. The colours of life died in that fire. Half of that land is a public carpark now and in 2015 when the MRT station (Beauty World Station) is completed, I reckon that the carpark will be gone and another transformation will take place.  

One day last week I happened to park my car on the seventh floor of the Bukit Timah Shopping Centre and got a bird's eye view of Beauty World area and a glimpse of the massive engineering work that is going on in the construction of our Downtown MRT line. In the background, parallel to the construction of the line are the Chun Tin Road shophouses comprising Malay and Chinese eateries. Behind them are the private housing estates and my mother's house is near the top of the hill. The land where the famous Beauty World stood once upon a time is not shown in the photos and is to the left of the shophouses. I seldom write so much on my blogs. I guess I got carried away reminiscing about a part of my life. Well most people would do the same.

A stitched up photo of the four photos above.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

From Geylang to Kallang and back

Once I said to my son that I would have liked to live during the fifties and the sixties and my son asked why. I really could not pin down any particular reason. Perhaps life would have been simpler as there would be less emphasis on making money and  focus on material signs of success. 

On a Saturday morning, we took a drive to Geylang Road where we took note of a coffee shop known for its superb mee siam and before driving on to the Kallang Riverside Park for a morning stroll.  After taking photos of the surroundings and stalking some migratory birds along the river, we headed back to Geylang for our mee siam lunch. Oh, and I also have to mention the very expensive tea and coffee and scrambled egg breakfast at a refurbished warehouse at the entrance of Kallang Riverside Park.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Comex 2011 - IT and Technology fair at Suntec City

I hate crowds and crowds make me cringe. Yet last Sunday I braved my hatred for crowded places at the Comex fair at Suntec City on Sunday. The strategy was to park at the Millenium Walk carpark and walk over to Suntec City to avoid the parking hassle. After what we went there to get a pair of sony headphones and some photo print papers. While there, I could not resist the  opportunity to check on the price of the Sony Cybershot HX100V that I had purchased a week before.  

The camera was selling at the same price i.e. $799 and so I was at least comforted to know that I did not pay more for my camera. However, the free gifts that came with the  camera purchased at the fair were twice what I had got. In addition to the extra Sony battery, the carrying case and the SD card, customers were given a foldable tripod stand, a digital photo frame and a screen protector for the LCD viewing screen. 

Okay, so I was a little regretful for not waiting before I bought my camera. Well, in life, nothing is perfect. I will have to learn to be more patient next time. Crowds do non flock to IT fairs for nothing obviously. On the other hand, I had one week of fun ahead of the fair and some of the photos I took with the camera like those of the Storkbill Kingfisher in the Singapore Botanic Gardens would not have been possible  had I postponed my purchase. 

Walking from Millenium Walk to Marina Square and onto Suntec City.
These tiles have not been changed for years.
Mild impression of the crowds because I took this photo around dinner time. The sea of humanity inside was much, much denser than what I had captured here.

The bridge linking Marina Square and Suntec City.
The fountain with the dancing lights where we rested.

We could have sat here.
After-dinner shot before leaving Marina Square.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

From Waterloo Street to Parkway Parade - Canon Powershot SX130 IS

This post is for Alice. Click on the photo to access the slideshow showing photos that I took with my faithful Canon Powershot SX 130 IS. I like this camera very much because it is compact, the colours are rich and the 14xzoom (if you have enough practice and a very steady hand) gives you reasonable good shots enabling you to capture shots from a good and safe distance. I like the wide picture format that gives photos a kind of panoramic feel and the only gripe I have with this camera is that it is not very fast in focusing and shooting if you are just using the full-auto and Program modes. Other than that, this camera remains one of the  best point-and-shoot cameras that I have owned to date. It also records video in HD format and is easy to use. Check out the photos - most of which were taken with the zoom feature - here by clicking on the photo.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Sony Cybershot HX100V - my photos

This post is not about any particular place in Singapore. When you click on the photo below, the slideshow will bring you through photos that I have taken with my new camera, the Sony Cybershot HX100V.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Sentosa walk

A lion guards our city and keeps us strong. Our largest Merlion statue on Sentosa is an icon on Sentosa island where the casino and the Integrated Resorts (IR) are located. If you do not wish to gamble or to shop, Sentosa is a great place to walk around in especially when the weather is nice and cool. Click on the photo for the slideshow.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Bright Hill Pujue Ch'an Monastry

Bright Hill Pujue Ch'an Monastery 光明山普觉禅寺 is the largest Buddhist Temple in Singapore. It is a spiritual place and one feels at peace and at ease amongst the beautiful architecture and the greenery surrounding it.