Click here for the latest at RunEatGossip »

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Draft Master Plan - Our Future Our Home

I really excited about the draft Master Plan by the URA. For one, golf course is no longer untouchable. The gahmen has announced that it is willing now to let the leases for the golf courses expire if the land are needed for other purposes. But what got me more excited is the attention that is being given to "nature" which comes under Recreation.

Here are some highlights of what the public might expect:

1. 2 new nature areas.
I must admit I have no idea where is Jalan Gemala and Pulau Unum & Betting Bronok but if it means new place to explore and run, I am definitely going to track them down, where ever they might be.

2. A more accessible Kranji Marshes
I have not been here before even though I been to Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve many times. Somehow I can't seem to locate this place but hopefully once they make the access easier, I can go there more often. 

3.An extended Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve
Has the new extension been completed? The poster seems to suggest it has. I going there soon. Time to check out the place again!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Langkawi Wildlife Park

Went for a short trip down to Langkawi, Malaysia. Purpose was to see the Princess who is doing her internship there so first stop after check in was her place of work, the Langkawi Wildlife Park

Now coming from a place where there is a world class zoo, a unique Night Safari and a brand new super duper River Safari, the small little Langkawi Wildlife Park pales in comparison. But what it lack in size and the quantity of the animals, it more than made up for it with its super service fully justifying the Certificate of Excellence awarded by Trip Advisor.

We didn't announce our presence as one of their staff's parent. We paid the usual admission fee and strolled in. What hit was most was the sheer small size of the place and the exhibit. Frankly in term of exhibits, there was nothing much. Some birds, mostly parrots, macaws, parakeets and budgie, peacock and some fowls. There were 2 crocodiles, admittedly one of them was super huge, 3 donkeys, some snakes and monkeys and some smaller mammals. Nothing much but what bowled us over was the friendly zoo keeper. They were so friendly and they freely chit chat with the visitors and during feeding time, invited the guests to help with the feeding which is how we ended up with these:

M feeding the peacocks
Mum feeding the Cassowary with tomato
The Kid having a swell time feeding the rabbits
We also got to feed the donkeys and the ostrich and also got to handle the Oriental Whip Snake. The amazing thing was we were handed the snake by a teenager. We found out later he was the boss' son and it being the school holiday, he was there to help out.

But what we found most amusing was the many signs place all over the place. I can imagine that if they can come out with cute fun signs like this, the Management are definitely on the right track to make the place a truly must visit attraction in Langkawi.

We found 2 similar theme things and I thought it be fun to post it here. Can you see what are the 2 similar theme in both pictures?

And this is no photoshop image here. The monkey really has blue balls!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Smokers are selfish and inconsiderate

Smokers, I swear, are the most inconsiderate people in the world. Not only do they choose to pollute our lungs with their second hand smoke but they also choose to pollute the environment. 

Sometime ago, I talked about the disappearing rubbish bin and my tango with the NEA over smoking along the walkway. Eventually, the NEA figured they couldn't beat the smokers and so the bin came back notwithstanding that the walkway should be considered a shelter walkway and hence covered under the new anti-smoking law. But I had by then gave up the fight with the smokers and the NEA.

Then recently one morning, I was astonished to see that the bin had disappeared. But unfortunately, the smokers didn't disappear along with the bin and the cigarette butts and the rest of their accessories like the box and tissues all ended up on the flower bed and the ground.

Some enterprising guy even came up with this little urn to put the cigarette butts but most of them just ended up on the ground.

And this was what I saw this morning when I went to work.

The bin or half of it has made a reappearance along with a whole chunk of junk. I half hope the whole lot will catch fire. That will at least catch the attention of the big wigs at NEA. But fortunately or unfortunately, the trash was soon clear and we are now just back to good old cigarette butts.

I have nothing against smokers personally. Many of them are nice guys but I dare say, almost all of them will think nothing of just flicking that butt on the ground and just walking away. I seen it often enough, fisherman doing it at the jetty, cyclists dumping it when they ride past and office workers like those above tossing them into the flower bed. Are they selfish and inconsiderate? Definitely and I like to see anybody who can argue against that!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Is NS nowadays really that bad?

I was attending this course and somehow the talk turned to NS. One lady started relating her son's story and the lecturer added in with her own son's woes. There were a lot of negativity about it with the main complaint being that their sons were being "victimised" and how bad it was. The lecturer's son even told his mum that NS was National Slavery!

Is NS really that bad? I have been through it more than 30 years ago. My son would have completed his by now had he not signed on. I daresay NS during my time was a zillion time worse than what it is now. After all, I have my son who can keep me in the know about current NS life compared to what we went through 30 years ago.

Those days, we had change parade (now banned). We also had to do star jump (banned), full battle order obstacle (no more), unlimited number of push up (now restricted to 20?) per time. I also understand now the soldiers have to wear arm guard, knee guard when doing field training involving crawling on the ground! My son told me during his BMT, whenever it rain, they have to walk under shelter, and if they are sitting in the field and it gets too hot, the instructors have to move them under shade. And where got such thing as Cat 1 lighting in our days? Recruits no longer have to wash their own plate, do camp area cleaning etc etc and I can go on and on and on.

So what is it that makes it more tough nowadays? If  not the physical part, the mental? Anybody who think the kids have it worse mentally have never met the crazy instructors from the SAF Boys school or the Hokkien spewing instructors where every other word is a reference to some body parts. Try carrying an oil drum (empty no doubt) running to the nearest tree and kissing it! Just like my predecessor before me said NS life during our time was heaven compared to theirs, I think what our kids have now is akin to a holiday camp. Ok maybe boot camp or Outward Bound School.

Nowadays the kids can complain about everything and they got mummy to talk to the PC, OC and even MP whenever they have to do duties, take extra or burn their weekend due to training. My son related to me about one of his BMT mate who cried when he was assigned to do duty on his birthday! My course mate said her son was being victimised and she had to talked to the OC but the bullying got worse after that so she went to see somebody who knew a minister and the bullying ceased after that!

NS has not become tougher. Kids nowadays have become softies. They are so pampered at home and never subject to any punishments or even scolding that they cannot take the rough and tumble life in the military. And with mummy trying to cover their assess whenever something cropped up, I fear for the day when Singapore has to fight a real war. Can we count on these softies or do we have to depend on our pool of Blanga cleaners and Pinoy maids to fight our war?

And oh, please don't tell me NS is a waste of time because Singapore will never have a war. Can anybody dare to say never ever? Try telling that to the Kuwaitis who thought they were good pals with neighbour Iraq until Saddam Hussein decided to steam roll his way into their country!