At the crossroads of Mackenzie Road and Selegie. This was a few weeks after Deepavali but the decorations are still up
I haven’t been running lately, so as a compromise, I’ve taken to walking a lot. I live fairly central from town, and most of the places I go to are roughly three kilometers from home, so after a night/day out gallivanting, I would walk home. It’s my compromise for not being so assiduous with the running regimen. These pictures were taken around a week or so ago. I was always on Orchard Road, watching films during the German Film Festival (…incidentally, why are serious films called “films” and Hollywood blockbusters “movies”? Ever think of that? It’s the same bugbear I get when in a library or bookstore, fiction is divided between “bestsellers” and “literature” — aren’t all of them literature? Anyway…) and I was walking home and it occurred to me to just take pictures. So here they are. I don’t know if it’s because I was just in a reflective and pensive mood when I shot them, but there’s a loneliness to the images that particularly resonated. Or maybe that’s just my take on them. So let’s begin…
START: Most of the films shown for the German Film Festival were shown here, at The Cathay, which is the oldest cinema in Singapore…. Well, the facade is part of the oldest cinema. Notice how it’s very Art Deco. It’s now a mall and a cineplex. I like that the authorities kept the facade. I like the sign too. It’s connected to The Hunger Games: Catching Fire movie, but I can’t feeling that the irony is a bit delicious, in the context of Singapore.
Walk a few meters, and we come to Uncle Ice Cream Sandwich vendor. There was a crowd when I was walking towards him, so I waited for a few minutes for them to disperse. Ice cream sandwich vendors are practically the only ambulant vendors in Singapore these days who sell food, the rest are in hawker centers. The building in the background is the Rendezvous Hotel.
The facade of the imposing Singapore School of the Arts. It’s envisioned to be like the School of Performing Arts in New York from the movie, Fame.
POMO — it’s a mall. I actually haven’t gone in here. If I get curious enough I may go in one day…
Across from POMO is the Selegie Arts Centre, which I also haven’t investigated…yet. There’s a 24-hour cafe on its premises, though. So If my insomnia strikes, I know where to hang out with a book.
Late night sidewalk shopping, anyone?
Or maybe something to eat?
What’s a walk on the “wild side” without a little neon? While I was taking this picture, there was a white woman clutching a bouquet of roses leaning on the wall on the left, but she left when I started snapping. I wanted to take a picture of her, but I didn’t want to intrude; I have not mastered the art of asking complete strangers for a picture. I have a friend who could do it — just go up to a random stranger to request if she could take their photo because she loved what they were wearing or what they looked like. I think it’s a skill.
Colorful saris on display
One of the oldest movie theaters in Singapore, Rex Cinemas opened in 1946, but shut down in 1983. It was acquired by Shaw Theatres and was restored. It shows the latest Tamil and Hindi movies. This is practically in my backyard already.
Cater-corrnered from Rex Cinemas is Sole Pomodoro, an Italian pizza-pasta trattoria in Little India. Makes sense, yes? Mackenzie Road has a few interesting dining and hangout places that I like. This is one of them.
The two photos above are from the newly opened Madame Pattiserie Bistro and Bar. There’s another outlet on Boat Quay so I was pleasantly surprised when I chanced upon the new-ish (it’s been around a few months) outlet on Mackenzie. I haven’t gone to check out the food yet, but I bought a small loaf of banana cake that night. It was the perfect dessert to end the night with!
320 Below Nitro Ice Cream Cafe — Too bad I already bought the banana cake or else I would have definitely tried the ice cream here, which is made using liquid nitrogen.
Owl’s Brew. This interesting little bar is tucked away on Mackenzie Road just before it intersects with Bukit Timah Road. It’s an odd place for a bar because it’s far away from the madness of Little India, which would have drawn in more crowds. But I like that it’s sort of a neighborhood haunt. It’s a beer and ciders place that’s only a few blocks from my place. Perfect!
From Mackenzie, I turn left to go up Bukit Timah Road. Here’s an ubiquitous sign in Singapore. Sometimes I think this is Singapore’s motto — especially when work is especially grueling at the office. Of course, I say this half-seriously. I realize how lucky I am; I don’t have to actually do manual labor to keep body and soul together, like these guys…
Almost home — photos of the neighborhood and the neighborhood playground. I like walking through the playground, even when the lights are off in the later part of the night. It’s a peaceful place… Though sometimes I couldn’t help wondering what I’d do if I chance upon a little kid on the merry-go-round at night, like what happens sometimes in horror and ghost stories… FINISH.
My route: 2.46 kilometers. Not bad for a night’s walk.