Friday, May 24, 2013

My Queenstown Symposium (26 May 2013)

Dear friends,

I will be participating in the My Queenstown Symposium on Sunday, 26 May, 2.00pm, at the Queenstown Community Centre. I will be making a short presentation of my memories of Queenstown. As you should be aware, Singapore’s first HDB estate has been undergoing drastic transformation these past few years. Many of the iconic places in this lovely little town have disappeared. Although, I have never lived in Queenstown, I have stayed near to it for most of my adult years; and hence have many happy memories of it.

Other speakers at this even include my friends, Lai Chee Kien and Yu-Mei Balasingamchow. For more details (you have to register), please visit their Facebook page here.

For those who have yet to purchase a copy of my book, I have good news. The organisors have kindly given me permission to sell my book at this event. You will be able to get it for only $10 instead of the usual retail price of $18.65. So I look forward to seeing you there. 

Recognize these places?

Thursday, May 09, 2013

Goodbye pedometer, hello Runkeeper

For the past 10 years or so, I have been using a pedometer whenever I go for my brisk walking exercise. A pedometer is a device that you clip to your waistband and it measures the number of steps you take when you walk or jog. Whilst it doesn’t measure the distance I have covered, unless I take the trouble to convert (for me it’s approx 1250 steps per km), it is good enough as a barometer to check my exercise level; and prod me to get off my butt when the end of the month approaches and I am behind target.

But lately, I have decided to ditch my trusty pedometer, which had followed me even when I travel overseas, because I have found a new love …. Runkeeper. This is a really cool app available for Android as well as iPhone. Besides measuring the distance you have traveled in km, it has a number of advantages over the pedometer. It can store your data (and share with your friends on Facebook – which I don’t), measure your speed and even plot your route on Google Maps. Now how cool is that. And it is also free. The pedometer which I have purchased from Mustaffa Centre – so far I have used 3 – costs about $20+. There are other features which I am too lazy to figure out. The above are good enough for me …. for now.

And so it’s Goodbye pedometer, hello Runkeeper.

Haha …. In case you wonder why I took so long to complete the 6.2 km route around the Pandan reservoir; I kept stopping to take photos to share with friends on Facebook.

GMY Book Contest #8 - results

Congratulations to reader, Chew. The correct answer is Jurong Road. My friend James Tann who shared this photo from the 1980s said; “This photo of Jurong West as taken from the Jurong Road roadside at Hong Kah Village. Location should be somewhere near today's Green Haven Halfway House that was beside the old Bulim Cemetery.” 

The sign which I had blurred out actually says; “Bulim Community Centre"

But I am still having trouble pinpointing the exact location because in the 1980s, the PIE had already been constructed; and yet in James’ photo, the HDB blocks looked so near. If this place was indeed near the Green Haven Home, they should be much further away. Anyway, I hope readers can throw some light.
From 1981 street directory
Actually, I have blogged about this area before here. In the old days, when we travelled to Safti via Green Bus 175 or 174 to Nantah, we would pass through this stretch of Jurong Rd. However, we were usually too tired or sleeping to note the surroundings. As I mentioned in the earlier article, we also did a lot of topo training in this part of Spore which we called Hong Kah.

Here are a few more photos of Jurong Rd between Bukit Batok Road and Green Haven taken in April 2007.

PS – Chew, pls email your address to me so I can send you a copy of my book.

Saturday, May 04, 2013

GMY Book Contest #8

First to identify this place gets a free copy of my book Good Morning Yesterday.

Photo credit: James Tann
But no prize for identifying the street in this 1960s photo from Tim Light.