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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Market Street Carpark Building

This used to be a familiar sight along Cecil Street. There are only 2 buildings of this nature in town where the dominant usage is car parking and not retail. The other building is the Golden Shoe Carpark building which ironically is on Market Street itself. 

The Market Street Carpark building was build in 1964 which made it the oldest carpark building in Singapore. This is a picture of it taken just after it was built.
Picture from the National Archive

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Tampines Eco Green 2

During my recent temporary lay off from running, with time to kill while waiting to recover, been going around taking pictures. This trip, the Princess and me, went over to Tampines Eco Green. So far I have only ran there never really walk around in it and look at the  flora and fauna. And it was my loss. There are so many beautiful creature of nature! 

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Barrier Free?

The HDB said that a $22m programme to make most HDB estate barrier free will be completed by end of the year. Kudos to that but is it really so? Providing the physical feature is one thing but did HDB or whoever came up with the design think through the whole process?

Let looks at this example. The following picture is a picture of a typical overhead bridge that was built in the late seventies and eighties. To go up the bridge, one has to climb up the flight of staircase which means most elderly will balk at the gigantic steps to be taken and wheelchair and handicapped will not be able to cross.

Photo taken from 
So the new generation of bridges that came along features ramp. Great right? Unfortunately no. Take a look at the next picture. It feature a long ramp approximately 30 metres. And that is just one portion of it. There is another ramp next to it. Some bridges like the one across the PIE to Bedok Reservoir has 4 ramps on each side. Now which elderly person will want to walk almost 200 metres just to get to the top of the bridge? And wheelchair friendly? Yes but only if someone is pushing it. Otherwise, I don't see how any wheelchair bound person will be able to push himself/herself up all those inclines!

Then we have these nice sheltered walkways connecting the various HDB blocks to amenities and public transport. But somebody forget to tell these cyclists that this is not a bicycle parking bay. Just look at the number of bicycles chained to the railing! How is any elderly persons or handicapped person who need to hold on to the railings going to walk through that tangle of bicycles! The HDB and town council should seriously clamp down on these illegal parking otherwise it defeats the purpose of having all these barrier free features.

Last but not least, the authorities also decided to level the curb to make it easier for those in wheel chairs to move around. But did anybody tell this freaking selfish  motorist that it is not meant for his personal parking space! By parking his car on the pavement, made easy by the removal of the curb, he is forcing pedestrians to walk on the road! 

Barrier free by end of the year? I doubt.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Teo Heng Teochew Porridge

My absolute favourite Teochew Porridge. But unfortunately, one that I can only get to eat once in a while because like all typical Teochew porridge, it's is quite pricey. There are 2 stalls, one at Hong Lim Complex and another at Amoy Street.

Amoy Street
Hong Lim. Signboard changed after the upgrading of the hawker centre

Friday, November 18, 2011

Flower Dome and World Orchid Show

Had an opportunity to visit the Flower Dome at the new Gardens by the Bay at Marina South. The Gardens is still under construction and only the Flower Dome is open for a preview in conjunction with the World Orchid Show.

Getting to the Flower Dome is via a pedestrian bridge from the Marina Bay Sands. And what a walk! There was a nice view of the Singapore Flyer and the open grounds of the Gardens.

The view of the Singapore Flyer from Marina Bay Sands
The view of the Gardens by the Bay
 The Flower Dome was a wonder! It is a giant glasshouse with humidity and temperature control and walking inside was like walking in a temperate country. There were all sorts of plants including bottle trees from Australia, thousand year old olive trees from the Mediterranean and lots and lots of cactus from all over.
The spacious interior of the Flower Dome
After the nice walk outside, we headed indoor to the World Orchid Show. This is a biggie show, held for the first time in Singapore.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Belacan Fish and German Pork Knuckle

I have been going to Bedok North Blk 85 for the longest time. But when I go there, it is usually for the minced meat noodles, chicken wing and satay and seldom anything else. Until one day a friend told me about a stall there that sells pork knuckle.

One evening, while there, and after ordering the usual, I suddenly remembered the recommendation and went looking for it. The good thing was I found the stall but unfortunately having already order the usual stuff and it being supper, figured my stomach had no more place for the pork knuckle. But the next best thing was  that I discovered that they were selling this:

Ok I know the picture doesn't look too appetitising but this was a belacan fish! The last time I had eaten it was when my dear beloved MIL, God bless her soul, cooked it! M absolutely loves it and maybe it reminds us of her mum so I bought one and it was absolutely the best. Fried to perfection, with just the right amount of belacan neatly placed into the fish, it was comfort food at its best! At $3.50 per fish, it was practically a steal considering that nobody seems to be selling it anymore!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Bintan Agro Beach Resort

Over the long weekend, found myself at the Bintan Agro Beach Resort. I thought it was part of the Bintan  group of Resorts but unfortunately or fortunately, it was not. Why?

Night view of the main lobby and a wee little swimming pool
It wasn't really much of a resort. The website looks good but look can be deceiving as we found out too late. Firstly, it was small. Too small for my liking. I had brought along my running gear intending to do a nice round around the resort but the only runnable route was a 800 metres stretch of pavement. 

The signboard seems to suggest a whole lot of facilities but most of them are the name of the blocks of rooms.

The accommodation was rather basic and looks run down. There were only 2 restaurants serving rather mediocre food! In fact, for the time we were there, we had the typical buffet lunch and dinner that back in Sg we normally cater during family gatherings. So after dinner on Sunday evening, a group of us took a cab and went to Tanjung Pinang for seafood!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Swatow Seafood Restaurant

After watching Buffet Buffet 2 on Channel 8, decided that since I was going to Toa Payoh, to check out the dim sum buffet at Swatow Seafood Restaurant. That despite the rather negative review on Hungrygowhere.

We were early and didn't qualify for the high tea buffet which starts at 3pm. But since we were there and we reckoned we can't eat that much, we went in anyway. The place is old style in design but aesthetically it was rather modern. There were waitress pushing the traditional dim sum trolleys and service was fairly decent despite the reviews on Hungrygowhere. Maybe it is because it was not the dim sum buffet time and the crowd was not that big.

We started off with several trays of unusual looking steam dim sum.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Admiralty Park

Have not been to this part of Singapore before and really didn't know what to expect. So to find out, the only thing is to make my way there first. Was surprised at the beautiful carved out trail there. A bit short only about 2km but it was fantastic. A nice place to run and a nice place to look at nature.

Was not there to run (this was during my rehab period) just walking around taking pictures. The Princess took the SLR and I ended up with the compact. Still, took a few rather nice photos.

A stream running through the park
A skink and there were plenty of them there