death by paper cut

{December 12, 2008}   Melaka

on monday’s public holiday the geek and i along with some friends did a day trip to melaka.

it took only 2 hours 45 minutes to drive up to melaka from 2nd link, in torrential rain and a mid way break. however, it took twice the time (without a break) to get back in the evening because firstly, it was a public holiday, secondly, it was a public holiday that people would use to do festive visiting (hari raya haji) and thirdly, people would stop down to a halt on a 110km/h highway to look at car accidents in the opposite direction.

in any case, we were quite prepared for a traffic jam on the way home, and i for one was fully contented just sitting next to the geek.

it rained almost the entire time on our way there and back. but since the itinerary was mostly centred on eating and window shopping in the malls, the rain wasn’t a big deterrence. especially since we didn’t queue at the stalls with the long patient queues.

we had the infamous famosa chicken rice balls at jonker street. the balls have become smaller than i last had them more than  a decade ago. i also didn’t remember the chicken rice ball stalls with such long queues or with such celebrity status.

i was hoping have been able to walk around the touristy/historical area to get some photos and write up for teaching material (secondary 1 history syallabus), but we couldn’t because of the rain and time constrain. in any case, i have my 2005 melaka trip to fall back on for that.

there are now two malls in melaka town, one of which took over the open area where the pasar malam stalls clusterd, which was – at an even older point in time – a smelly bullock cart circuit.

the airconditioned mall can no doubt shelther more shops in all weather conditions, but something is lost at the same time. there used to be a lot more pasar malan stalls, only a fraction of them were accomodated in the malls. and the shops in its place now are homogeneous chains and branches of mnc, even the prices are internationally controlled.

the scarity is land and immediate economical generation is often quoted as the reason why progress and heritage cannot coexist in singapore. so i’m not sure why a country that has vast spaces and a state that has recently attained the status of World Heritage Site of UNESCO has trouble keeping the balance.


Simple and sad answer: money.

Hmmm… it’s snowing on your blog!

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