Sunday, 26 July 2015

People look East

The carpark at the Geylang market
Yesterday we went to the Geylang market. It is one of the few real places left in Singapore. But it is still very overcrowded, although it was market day - Saturday - and therefore it was bound to be crowded. We went there cos i was meeting a cousin later on and it was in the ballpark area - the East.

A very sleepy Oisin
The festivities for Eid were over and everything looked very bare. But i love Geylang. The noise, the smells, the people. Geylang is a whisper of the Singapore that i once knew. It is a Singapore where anything could still happen. Maybe it still does.

The new market - done up in the traditional Malay building style
From just about here, you can smell the place. It first smells of curry powders - particularly coriander. Then the smell changes to fish and dried prawns. The fish and dried prawns smell can be hard to take if you have never smelt it before, but to me, it is the smell of home.

People cycle about - it has a kampung feel about it


My mom and dad crossing at the traffic lights



The FRUIT!!! - more than the food in Singapore, i miss the fruit

Buah Pelasan 

Ghin tucks into chendol
Chendol is shaved ice, with melaka sugar, green agar agar and coconut milk. It is the most wonderfullest dessert drink in the world.

Oisin finally gets his gula merah

I get sup kambing - the spiciest, most stewed up goat soup in the world 

The Geylang market - still holds a magic and wonder for me

Bags and bags of everything

Ma buys the best nangka in the Singapore - the people of
Geylang know their nangkas


It is fruit season and there are mangosteens in store

Marine Parade beach
From a distance the beach looks great. I say this all the time when i blog about Marine Parade beach. I  used to come here almost everyday. I'd cycle here, go for a run, maybe swim, take a shower and sleep in the lifeguard's stand There was no one here in those days. I loved the fact that i could be alone, totally uninterrupted to dream about the horizons beyond the shores of Singapore.

The ships have come in much closer
I have many many good memories of Singapore. Some of my favourite ones were made on this beach. When i think about Singapore, in fact when i think of the good things that sustain me, this memory of cycling to the beach is one of them. One of the quiet, halcyon moments in my life. I knew it was good and i knew that life was good. On this beach.


The beach is not quiet any more. All kinds of things have happened there. When we wee there was a triathalon, and all the hoopla that comes with this sort of thing. The pumping gym music, the loud annoying announcer, the people shouting at people that they can do it, the tents and the seething mass of humanity which presses and smells. I admit i am an introvert. I am. I do not like crowds. I do not strangers trying to piss all over each other. I like either being with close friends, or an intimate situation with strangers, or i like total anonymity. Anything in between makes me nervous and annoyed - well, mildly so. Anyway, i did the sports i did because they afforded me peace and silence Running, and swimming and cycling are the holy trinity. I did do squash and netball, but i have no ball sense and i get very confused about whom i should pass the ball to, which means those sports are a nightmare for me. But these three i did because i love endurance sport, and i also love the silence and tranquility they give me. Running for miles, far from anyone, away from people, into a rainforest, for instance. Running for miles and miles - even if it is around a track - which basically forbids anyone from talking to you. Cycling from one end of the island to the other - most people cannot join in - and GOOD. I don't want anyone to join in, thank you. This is my go to down time.

So when i see these mass events - ugh. People often ask me why i never ran a marathon back in the day - well i said it was boring, but really the truth is that i can't bear crowds.

The beach was a mess. Plastic bottles, my nephew found a colostomy bag, plastic buckets, noodle packets, brooms... you name it, the detritus of humanity, from all four corners of the Earth strewn on the shores of Singapore.

So this i liked
Really nice shower facilities which we could wash off - free and clean and really super practical. I really liked that.

I would have used that everyday if i was at the beach

The hawker centre there
In Singapore you have a mind boggling variety of juices. Here we have sugar cane, lime and honey and watermelon juice. We have these super cheap and we have these all year long.

It was getting super hot at this point in time


I find it hard to believe that it is only 36 deg C


Taking the bus home
My sons do not know how to catch a cab. This is because we either phone for one in Northern Ireland - because of security issues - or we take the bus and train. Or my mom drops us off. So when we stood by the side of the road and nothing arrived after 30 seconds, Oisin went, we have to get a bus. This makes me laugh. I said, look you have to wait a little longer. Another 30 seconds. Nothing is coming, let's get a bus. So we walked from Laguna to Marine Parade, across the ECP....it was boiling hot and i think everyone managed to get mild sunstroke. But we finally got the bus.

In time-honoured tradition i fell asleep on the bus as we meandered back to Ang Mo Kio Ave 3. My sons spent most of that journey messing about.

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