Friday, 28 February 2014

Saying goodby to the King: King Albert...

King Albert Park (Complex) along Bukit Timah Road.
Le Roi est mort! Vive le Roi!
Holbein on
Stillman and Birn Delta Hardbound
The News
When I first heard the news that King Albert Park complex was going to be demolished, my first thought was, “Again? They’ve said for the umpteenth time since I don’t know when…”

Then someone else mentioned that it’s real this time. The mall is going away for some other development. Having some extra time because I got out from work earlier the other day, I thought I’d record the building for posterity: something to remember the place by.

The Meeting
I got acquainted with that place during my national service days (my camp was in the vicinity). There were occasions when I’d visit the mall, my camp buddies would order their junk and process foods while I just grabbed a coke (I was never a fan of fast or processed foods). Inside the McD’s then, when you look up the ceiling, you’d notice a model train sitting on rails that span the ceiling. It had already stopped running then. Rumours were (from my lecturer in college) that the train used to move and greet diners overhead while they ate. I never saw it move.

The Second Time Around
When I started working and found my weekend interest in baking, especially in experimenting with scones recipes. I discovered the Cold Storage supermarket at that particular mall was about the only one that sold real Devonshire cream (aka clotted cream) which is “accompaniment de rigueur” for scones.

The End (but not quite...)
When my scone-obsession phased off to other recipes, so did my visits to the mall. Being a working class person, it’s hard to sustain a distant-relationship with an entity inconveniently located and within a high-end, high ‘SES’ neighbourhood. So the ties unbound and the relationship died a natural death.

The Rebound
I sat at a corner of the busy junction, at an island of pedestrian crossing and traffic lights. The fast moving traffic and the sound of their engines, the occasional military vehicles zooming past the place and relived the memories, my memories of the place. And for that period of collected moments while I was there, I was THERE, again.

P.S. I hope I did the place justice with this sketch... for my memories.

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