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…
Paper lanterns in the courtyard of Anggun Boutique Hotel, in Kuala Lumpur, where B and I stayed October 2012. Anggun is a small boutique hotel just a street away from Jalan Alor, KL’s vibrant hawker street
Looking through my photographs one time, I noticed that I tended to take a lot of photos of windows, lamps, light, etc… aside of course, from the usual food, drink and scenery shots. I’ve never deleted the photos because, well, they’re part of the journey and I figured I could use them somehow one day… In Remembrance of Things Past, Proust gets transported back to a memory just on the taste of a madeleine. And so it is with these pictures. One look and they take me back to when I was there, living the moment.
When I first moved to my current house, I didn’t quite understand the impressed exclamations of friends and acquaintances alike when they found out I lived in a black-and-white. For me, the house was charming and quaint, but I never really realized the historical significance of the structure itself until much later, and how a lot of people wanted to live in one but can’t. I also didn’t realize how lucky I am in my neighborhood. Singapore is such a big modern city, filled with impressive buidings and tall condominiums, not to mention the vast public housing estates that I have come to realize that living in an actual house, with a yard and an actual neighborhood much like the ones I grew up in has become a rarity here. So I thought I’d record what’s around the neighborhood and post it here, for, er, posterity’s sake.
Around a month or so back, thinking that I should jumpstart my writing — not writing for work, but writing for myself — I told myself I’d attend more lectures and writing seminars just to get into the swing of things.
So, as it turns out the Singapore Writers Festival was happening last week of October so I thought I’d check it out. The festival was holding a Microfiction competition, wherein participants would write a short 500-word fiction story in under three hours, using some words provided by the organizers. Now, as a writer, I know that to write a compelling short story required tremendous skill and talent, but I thought I’d see if I can do it anyway. So I joined the contest. The competition happened two weekends ago and my entry is posted in the microfiction website. You can read my story here. I have no illusions about winning the competition, but I really just joined because I wanted to see if I could do it. And as I expected, writing a short story that short is insanely hard. The results for the competition will be announced on November 4.
The title of the piece, is of course, “Insomnia.” It’s so me, right? 😉