Sunday, 20 September 2015
|Nonya kueh -- a first attempt by the chief chef at Ms Qua's Kitchen -- and a great success.|
In the vicinity was the Daily Book Store (you remember, of course). It was along a row of old shophouses at 6th Mile. The market at 6th Mile had really great food. We always counted the attap-jis in the ice kacang. But my favourite was the slightly greenish brown grass jelly served with ice cubes in a small china bowl.
We didn't watch too many movies at the Zenith, more at Kok Wah I think. But anyway, the theatre (with a zinc roof) was more or less a landmark. And if you were taking the bus to Changi, using the old Tampines Road, you won't miss it.
Back to Ms Qua's Kitchen. It is an embodiment of the good old times. Even the telephone number remained almost the same (except that you need to add a number in front, or by now, two numbers). An old classmate once observed that if he couldn't trace any of us, he would just need to dial Ms Qua's Kitchen.
Although Ms Qua's Kitchen serves great dishes -- and memories -- you won't find it listed in the yellow pages. So, it is a privilege and an honour to be invited to Ms Qua's Kitchen for lunch and tea. If you get an invitation to Ms Qua Kitchen's it would be a sin to reject.
Tuesday, 15 September 2015
This was The Assassin (which won the Best Director Award at Cannes). It was not all that bad. Yinniang (Shu Qi) was the Angel of Death -- moving effortlessly as the wind, tall and grim. Quiet as air too -- I read that she had just 10 lines in the entire movie. She was trained from young (by a nun) to kill -- equiped with the best of skills for this function. But Yinniang has a soft heart and did not complete what she was tasked to do.
What's the takeaway for me in this movie? That you may possess the best skills in the world, but they aren't of any use if they don't result in anything meaningful (for you). At the end of the movie, Yinniang managed to find good use for her martial arts -- more for preventing deaths than to kill.
One of the best scenes in the movie was in black and white -- when death was seen through the eyes of a dying man as he was shot by an arrow and fell from his horse -- the sky through a tangled mess of twigs, leaves and branches -- and the great rustling of leaves as the wind blows through them. At the moment of death, the senses are sharpened. And then, darkness. (Okay, this is just my interpretation and may not be the director's intent.)
Here's the written story (which is still very complicated to me) http://www.theworldofchinese.com/2013/09/tales-of-the-marvelous-part-3-nie-yinniang/
Monday, 7 September 2015
You'll see some interesting flowers, cuckoo birds and one or two timid black squirrels -- and the occasional cyclist emerging from one of the side paths like the one below.
After about half an hour's walk and a climb up a gentle slope, you will reach a wooden platform with shelters.
And this very helpful map.
Here's the entry to Bukit Brown (I think) from Jalan Mashhor which branches off from Gymkhana Ave which branches off from Mt Pleasant Road. There's nary a soul here, so again, I did not enter. Well, that "mysterious" lane I wanted to explore (http://bitspiece.blogspot.sg/2015/09/another-path.html) was Lorong Halwa off Kheam Hock Road, which leads to the gates of Bukit Brown. However I understand that there's construction there now and the gates are closed. So I thought I would explore Jalan Mashhor instead which I hear, may lead to the hill. I am always rather slow on the uptake or rather, take-up. Countless tours to Bukit Brown have been conducted in the last few years, and I have not signed up for any yet.
The long and winding road that is Jalan Mashhor leading to the shell of the MRT station (that would be the Bukit Brown station when the line is completed).
Further up this road towards Thomson Road is the Masjid Omar Salmah built in 1973. Built kampung style, it can accommodate about 300 worshippers.
Watch an aerial video (by Ads Vantage) of the Omar Salmah mosque that is along this road: http://www.videothatsells.com/work/masjid-omar-salmah-aerial-video
As the the Singapore Polo Club is nearby, I was hoping to see horses poke their noses over the fence and say hrrmph. But I guess the weather was too hot!
Mr Pleasant Road is indeed very pleasant and you see many rambling black and white bungalows along its curvy length. Many of these are managed by Ascott of CapitaLand.
The road is rather popular for motorists taking a short cut (or a pleasant drive) to Thomson Road. Entering from Whitley Road, you will see on your right, Onraet Road. Since it has three "no entry" signs, you had better not go in.
Next to Onraet Road, is another narrow path, which may perhaps be the old Wong Chin Yoke Road which had disappeared from the maps today (left, reproduced from a 1963 street directory). MediaCorp when it was TCS, had used this rather eery place for a few location shoots, including a car explosion scene in the 90s.
Tuesday, 1 September 2015
Splendid houses along this area. Huge compounds, long driveways. Lots of greenery. Kudos to your eyesight if you can read the name of the road on the signpost. But perhaps you can. Must remember that not everyone got presbyopia like myself :)