Friends from 1950s & 60s

The end of Nov 2013


Fri: Happy Birthday to eldest grandson John W, the only one of my grandchildren born in SIN 7yrs ago! Pix with L&M of his first wedding party! when niece PatLynn got married to David.


This Salvatore Ferragamo at Paragon Shopping Centre is ready for the Black Friday Deals! I for one will not stand in line waiting to get into any shop!! Would rather do without.

IMG_0565Lisa comment on FB, ‘Jus passing bystander right aunty Amy Lam? Or it’s ur YOLO moment? Lol’. My answer, just a passer-by and was amazed that people would stand in line to get into the shop! My first thought was that I do not even own anything from this brand until I remembered this, and NO I did not buy it, tkx to Linn 🙂


The halls in Paragon are all ready and decked this year which seem to be leaning on the angelic theme. Am a fan of tiny angels and have a host with the biggest no bigger than 2”/5cm in height. Will get my Christmas village out sometime soon, but first the advent calendar 🙂 🙂


Thank you Hong Sze for lunch at the Tanglin Club. Nice to be updated with our latest happenings and joining the dots! Have known HS for 6 decades. Our parents were good friends and glad that we have managed to continue with our friendship, following the tradition of our parents. Both HS & KK were my first male play-mates who are not in the family. Quite amazing to think that my parents allowed me to slumber at their homes when we were kids 🙂 🙂 🙂


Sat: Peggy hosted a popiah party for 1962 class-mates from CHIJ. Dessert of local cakes and fruits by me! Sitting from left: Lynne who lives in Oxford/UK,  Rebecca, Sylvia, Juliana, Evelyn; standing from left: Janet (Peggy’s sister) me, Peggy, Penny, Shirley, Lydia and Pat. Except for Juliana and Janet, have known the others since 1962. Appreciations to Peggy for a heart-warming cheerful afternoon on this grey rainy day.

Remember; not every rainy day holds within it the promise of any rainbow –

Thanksgiving 2013

28 Nov 2013 – Happy Thanksgiving

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Did not make anything or did anything special this Thanksgiving but considering what has been consumed the past couple of weeks, still need to set the scale at least 10lbs back 🙂
Those who celebrate, hope that the turkey tasted and to those who do not, we still have much to be thankful for. Thankful to each and everyone of you who crossed my path in this life’s journey.
Table setting for the grandchildren from Thanksgiving 2012 when their old house, etc were still in-tact. Thanksgiving 2013, they will have a completely new setting for everything and I am most thankful for that my family is healthy and safe and they have a roof over their heads (pix of their newly acquired SC/USA house). They are always in my heart and thoughts in spite of the oceans in between us!

IMG_0521Tue: Hagley&Hoyle to get a flyer done and to pay a visit to ex co-workers. Have always like the Syam Corners Muslim Food***on the ground floor and took the opportunity to do a lunch (2 different kind of fish and clams). Must be good when it is still there with the lunch-time lines 🙂 🙂

Campers’ Corner to chat with Calvin regarding the talk for the UKc2c which will have to be the early part of 2014

Wed: Tiong Bahru area to do a job and nice to see some familiar buildings from childhood days still standing!


Thu: an exciting start to receive an email from Liz in UK, who used to live on Temenggong Rd in the 1950s and 60s and she remembers our family and the house!

8f0f9d2195600_190x272_b656207882No thanksgiving dinner but the yes to the movies. Took Kiera to see Frozen***roughly based on Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale ‘The Snow Queen’, but this is the Disney version!

When a prophecy traps a kingdom in eternal winter, Princess Anna teams up with Kristoff and his reindeer Sven on an epic journey to find Anna’s sister Elsa, the Snow Queen and put an end to her icy spell… great animated winter effects.

Thanksgiving dinners take eighteen hours to prepare. They are consumed in twelve minutes. Half-times take twelve minutes. This is not coincidence – Erma Bombeck

Ilo Ilo

26 Nov 2013 – Good Local Production 


SIN film Ilo Ilo was named the Best Feature Film at the Golden Horse Awards in Taipei on Saturday, the biggest award of the night. It won a total of four prizes, including Best New Director and Best Original Screenplay for director Anthony Chen and Best Supporting Actress for Yeo Yann Yann.


Ilo Ilo****/爸妈不在家: set in SIN about the relationship between a family of three and their newly arrived Filipino maid, Teresa. The family needs to adapt to the presence of this stranger, which further threatens their already strained relationship in their 3-room HDB flat, 700sq ft size as my apt!

Teresa and Jiale, the young and troublesome boy she cares for, soon form a bond. Their unique connection continues to develop and soon she becomes an unspoken part of the family. But this is 1997 and the Asian Financial Crisis is starting to be felt in all the region…

A must see movie for me not just because it won the awards but because the need to understand and relate to the local scene during my stay here. SIN-made movies do not usually make it to the overseas big screens and will try to catch them here if possible.


The local made movies reflect on the life in SIN. And no do not have a maid but know people who have at least one or two maids but would prefer calling them house-help. Grew up here in 1950s & early 60s with house-help. But they were there to clean and cook, not to look after the children! It was a different era then!!

Iloilo is the name of a province in Philippines where the real Teresita Sajonia is from. She was the nanny for the director’s family, the Chens from 1988-1997. Somehow the Chinese title Father Mother not at Home does not come across as exciting or interesting as Ilo Ilo!


Happy ending for former nanny Teresita Sajonia as she hugs Christopher Chen, the youngest of her three former wards in Singapore, at a  hotel in Iloilo City. Sajonia is the subject of a Cannes’ award-winning film  written/directed by Christopher’s eldest brother, Anthony. Photo courtesy of Selrahco.

All pix on this posting are downloaded from various media.

I’m very happy that they remembered the years we were together and that this was made into a movie. I’m happy that they grew up well – Teresita Sajonia

Tyrwhitt Road

24 Nov 2013 – Chinatown, Suntec City & Beach Road

Thu: finally the painting work completely but could not shut the main door overnight and if I did, the paint could be ruined. Thank goodness the outer gate is in place and can be locked with a pad-lock.

Fri: today Linn & family move into their new house and feeling a bit down that I am unable to help even though she has ensured me that they have plenty of help. All the best and good luck to them towards another new start.


Great to catch up with niece Daisy C for updates of her branch of the family. To Henry, tkx for helping to eat frog-legs congee with raw fish salad dinner at Tiong Shian Porridge Centre 長城粥品****/New Bridge Rd and for helping out with a job. Had a good night sleep until the storm started when the lightning and thunder nearly struck me out of the bed !


Sat: tkx to nephew Clement and Audrey for a BBQ pork, roast duck & pork lunch at Alex’s Eating House***/Beach Rd with dessert at Ji De Chi**/Liang Seah St. Decided to try the YinYang, almond and black sesame paste to discover that am no fan for that mixture! Glad that they were separated as in pix and could carefully eat first the one and then the other. Like almond paste on its own and same with black sesame but some of these fusions do not agree with the taste-bud 🙂

The Black Sesame Cold Cake and Osmanthus Flower Cake were so-so


A stroll to Suntec City to see the revamped version, and quite a change, especially the convention section where I used to help set up various conventions and shows. Another Christmas tree up and Thanksgiving is not even here yet!

Audrey drove us around Lavender MRT area. Usually when in this area, it is for a wake as that is where SIN Casket is located. Tyrwhitt Road has some trendy places where the younger generation gathers.



Chye Seng Huat Hardware, a fashionable coffee joint which is rather unexpected when one passes by the front door! They make their own brew but anyone who knows me also know that coffee is no no for me after 12n. As my bro said, she is hyper as she is, can’t image what she will be like with coffee 🙂 🙂


Further up the road are: the tiramisu hero, menu looks quite good but the eyes are wider than the stomach where there is not even space for another drop of water! Konzepp, with funky stuff, Chinese Druggist Association and with such a name seems an exciting place but was closed 🙂 🙂 🙂

Appreciations to Audrey for introducing these new locations. Enjoy exploring new places and such an eye-opener. Am blessed that these young people include me for their afternoon out.

He who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead; his eyes are closed – Albert Einstein

Climate Changes

21 Nov 2013 – And we are all culprits…


So long for now dear cousins May&Lock and looking forward to our next meeting. It has been a fun and hectic week, but too short and did not get to see as much but got to eat too much 🙂 Changi Airport T1, 2 & 3 are ready for the Christmas but that is still far away in my mind…

While the social calendar is busy for the past month and the next month, the global news have not gone by unaware or unnoticed. The fires in SE Australia, storms in UK and EU, typhoon in the Philippines and resulting in floods and mud-slides killing many. Very sad even though none the family helpers’ family or friends here in SIN are involved!


Disasters like these are considered natural but how long more are we going to keep our heads in the sand and not admit that we are all culprits in contributing to this global warming thus resulting in these disasters? There is no stopping or prevention with the amount of people all living on this one and only planet but how can we help by slowing it down when if we so materialistic and selfish??


We know that climate change is already affecting Earth’s weather in a major way, but we don’t exactly know how bad things are going to get. However, scientists have a pretty good idea of the probabilities of Earth going to hell in the next few decades.


Are we going to wait until it is too late when there will not be any dots to connect???

The  failure of world leaders to act on the critical issue of global warming is often blamed on economic considerations – David  Suzuki

The Gatsby Gala

19 Nov 2013 – Emerald Ball + Happenings


Sat: condolences to Pat & family for the passing of their father (93) and was told that their mother (85) passed away 4 months ago too. Managed to attend the funeral mass at St Teresa’s Church and the last time there was in 1961 where I was a student at St Teresa’s Convent then!



1455941_554537044628102_324397489_nThank you to Carmel&Soon for including me at their table for this annual SIN Ireland fund-raising function held at the St Regis. The theme this year is the Gatsby Gala with the McNally Pipers piping us into a night of glitz & glamour to a tasteful 5 course dinner with champagne, wine, Irish whisky etc. Followed by auctions and ending with dancing.



Sun: thank you to all who were there to support in one way or other, Audrey, Ting, CH, Carmel, Mica, Henry and Sue. It was a fun & educational experience to participate in a SIN heartlands’ Flea Market! — at Marine Crescent Gardens 2013 Flea Market.


Appreciations to Les&Ivy for a fusion dinner at KU DÉ TA*** on the 57th floor of MBS. OK food but usually when one is dinning al fresco on the 57th floor, the weather is important too and we had the sea view. It was a beautiful evening with May&Lock, Patrica and Kierra.



Mon: Gardens by the Bay and another wonderful day in the gardens lunching at the SuperTree by Indo Chine****Good food but the service does need improvement.


Thank you to cousin ChongWah & family for a gathering of 4 generations to an excellent dinner. Started in 1978, Beng Hiang Restaurant****at Amoy St has since established itself as one of the best Hokkien restaurants in SIN. The sucking pig is one of those die die must try! Niece AiLing will have to provide the names of this branch of the family!

Let us learn to show our friendship for a man when he is alive and not after he is dead – Scott Fitzgerald

Always a Pleasure

16 Nov 2013 – to show off SIN good sides!


Mon: why does everything has to happen at the same time? Apt under touch-up paint work, window grills and door gate at workshop and now done. A quick trip to Giant at Vivo City to get a step-ladder and small trolley and was rewarded with a beautiful sunset towards Sentosa and the cable cars.


Tue: annual visit to the temple at Waterloo St with Ivy’s mother and the help of Miela. This time round was just a quick visit and did get the chance to have lunch or shop. The threatening grey rumbling sky was just not the best day to be out.

Wed: more work done to the apt and had to leave the door and windows open due to new paint. Thank goodness the weather is not too bad but would have preferred the AC!


Thu: welcome May&Lock to SIN! Looking forward to showing Lock that his birth country is not what it was since he left in the early 1960s!! And yeah to the Kinetic Rain sculpture which is back in motion at T1 — at Changi Airport.


Tkx to Les&Ivy for delicious dinner at Dempsey Hill’s LongBeach Seafood****

Fri: received news of Pat Chee’s father’s passing.


Tourist guiding May&Lock  by bus to SIN River as they needed to settle their account at UOB. Was not aware that pix were not allowed in the bank. Anyway the lights there are quite amazing and difficult to resist the temptation to not take a pix 🙂


Fullerton Hotel with the new Gallery


SIN River, Raffles Place


Tkx Chesper for bringing back my pair Chaco from the US and tkx Larry for receiving them. Now I can walk in comfort. Bought a new pair when in the US but that was destroyed in the fire! Anyone who has owned a pair of Chaco sandals also know that they are strong, lasting and good for the feet. Have done much of my long distance hiking in them when weather permits.


Lunch at Blanco Court Prawn Mee, Haji Lane, Kampong Glam and Parkview Square with a bottle of wine at Divine Wine Bar. Many of the places mentioned are in past postings.


Appreciations to Les&Ivy for dinner at Boon Tong Kee/River Valley Rd chicken rice***

Pleasure and action make the hours seem short –  Shakespeare

Locals, Permanent Residents…

10 Nov 2013 – And Overseas Guests


Thu: lovely catching up with Carmel for breakfast at Blk 59 Marine Terrace. She is a terrific Irish lassie who has lived in SIN for 20yrs and one of the very few expats who knows how to shop at our local wet market. Way to go Carmel and such a pleasure to know one like her.

SSWF-NasiLemakThe nasi lamak/fragrant rice stall at Blk 59 Marine Terrace, next to the wet market is quite good. This traditional consist of sambal/condiment that has a chili-based sauce, ikan bilis/ anchovies, peanuts and boiled egg. This is the most traditional version. You can find stalls serving them with fried egg, sambal kerang/cockles – local favourite, sambal squids, sambal fish, chicken or chicken/beef rendang, squid fritters or even fried chicken or fish.

IMG_0217Lynne is back from Oxford/GB and thought she would like nasi lamak for lunch. Memories of slumbering at her place in the early 1960s and her parents were always kind and gracious to me. Being from Peranakan origins, had delicious noyan dishes made by Mrs Ong, Lynne’s mother and my Pri 6 teacher.

Great to catch up, tkx for delightful company and will see her a few more times before she takes off in Jan.

Tkx for dropping by Audrey and appreciate the company for a supper of cheese and wine!



Fri: celebrated Beverly’s bday at Blu Jaz Café on Bali Lane. Happy Bday Bev and appreciate for including me among your young international group from Bangladesh, France, Germany and Korea. Tkx Ting for yummy home-made carrot cake (the western kind!). Had to leave early with the third eye staring at our table all night 🙂


Sat: it is not even 1100hrs yet and look at the traffic jam by the bus stop! After last night, had to go down to Arab St area again to do some shopping and to have a bowl of my favourite Blanco Court Prawn Mee*****on Beach Road. Mee=noodles.


Art décor on Bali Lane. Amazing that the Parkview Square (across the road from Bali Lane) have had the luxury of standing without any obstructions for so many years, but alas this will not last. Constructions for a new building beside it are on going at the moment!


Order a bottle of wine at ‘Divine Wine Bar’ for an angelic experience 🙂 🙂 Check out this link:


US college football game with the Florida Gator playing against Vanderbilt Commodores has started as I am wrapping up this post. Not a fan of football but someone posted this beautiful pix and thus could not resist sharing and cheering on the Gators.

Jeff, Linn and May are Gators too. Off to bed now and Go Gators!

The  game of life is a lot like football. You have to tackle your problems, block  your fears, and score your points when you get the opportunity – Lewis Grizzard

Here Today

7 Nov 2013 – Gone Tomorrow

GravityMon: Gravity***on a seemingly routine spacewalk, disaster strikes. The shuttle is destroyed, leaving Stone and Kowalsky completely alone–tethered to nothing but each other and spiraling out into the blackness. The deafening silence tells them they have lost any link to Earth… but the loud effects and music did not convince me of any silence!

Not my taste, even with good ratings and reviews but had time after curtain shopping and it was pouring rain. The other movies were even less tempting!


Dinner with Henry in Chinatown. Chinatown Point has changed since the last visit, now with the Chinatown Public library on the top floor.


Tue: early breakfast at Cassia Crescent, behind Old Airport Rd and to pick up the best homemade bite-size cha-siu bao/Cantonese barbecue-pork-filled bun here in SIN.


Captured these shots while crossing the overhead bridge to the bus stop, this is so like life’s journey… here today gone tomorrow 🙂

Thanks to Nancy for sharing this: http://www, Made me realized that there is still much of the US that needs to be explored 🙂 🙂

vsm-562580c1731fbd65ec557e8bbe7aff2ePink: not been
Amber: visited
Green: lived there

Somebody out there, be creative and do a world map using this idea.

FreeBirdsBelated Bday present to Kiera, Free Birds***and it is about turkeys that try to travel back in time to get turkeys off the menu for Thanksgiving. This movie will certainly NOT get turkey off my Thanksgiving menu! Pizza is not for Thanksgiving 🙂 🙂 🙂

Thanks for dinner at Les&Ivy and hope that the new piano teacher will work out for Kiera.

Like today, like tomorrow. Life goes on and on with you or without you because everyday is just another day, so live it while you can because no one lives forever – Wazim  Shaw

Time to Fall Back

4 Nov 2013 – Daylight Saving Time


Sat: out bright and early to run errands. The huts attracted attention while waiting for the bus by the National Museum. Took a detour to see what they were about? SIN Biennale: Lumbung Ilmu (Granary of Knowledge), is an installation by Indonesian artist Rosid, in which he turned a hut, which was originally used by Indonesian farmers to store harvested rice, as a multi-functional space — a library, prayer room and a gathering point.


img_5396The vertical gardens at SIN Management University/SMU never fail to amaze me. Delightful memories of an International group of exchange students (pix Mar 2012) who are now traveling and working around the world.

Way to go, Ashley, JeanB, Magnus, Natasha, Ryan and Tommy. And do return for a visit soon! But see the world first 🙂


Nice weekend catching up with friends and getting to know a new one. Tkx to KB&Mindy who brought durians and mangosteens, yummy desert after a cheese and veggie platter. To family and friends who will have an extra hour of sleep due to Daylight Saving Time, instead of thinking that the US grandchildren are 12hrs behind, 13hrs will be it until Spring Forward and can look forward to seeing them.

Sunday Times: A woman was arrested by the police after she climbed over the railing at Changi Airport Terminal 1 on the netting below the Kinetic Rain sculpture…

OH NO, my favourite sculpture at the airport, she should be deported!

…the Kinetic Rain display was damaged by the intrusion with some strings on the art sculpture entangled…

Above photo: STOMP


Above 2 pix from 12 Apr 2013 posting.

I’m still a firm believer that we were definitely put here to use our mind and that is what makes us different. And that’s the key. If there is anything that is going to stop mankind from being such a beastly, destructive creature it is reason – Caleb Carr