Les Petits Contes

About life's little observations, which matter. About hilarious situations, which illuminate. About stories which offer immense possibilities, open endings, different interpretations and perspectives.

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Location: Singapore

A nature lover; sun-worshipper, manic book-collector, dessert-devourer and a magnet for hazards

Thursday, April 15, 2004

As Holland Village Wakes Up

To those of you who have flexi time and free time in between your day's schedules, guard it jealously, and treasure it.

This morning I had the rare occasion of being at Holland Village at 9 am – a time I would normally be at the office. (I had to deposit a cheque – the previous one bounced - I had forgotten to sign it again – it was my umpteenth time:-)

In the bright sunshine and quiet streets, I saw an ah soh pushing along with her trolley of groceries. I saw very few shops open for business, amongst those still asleep - Coffee Bean, the kopi tiam, Delifrance. And a (presumably) service staff sitting on the steps outside a restaurant - probably waiting to open it. What a different tranquil sense I felt – so different from the hustle and bustle Holland V that I know during my hurried lunchtime errands.

I saw an old man sitting at one of the coffee shops reading papers and having his kaya toast and kopi-o. There was an ang moh having her leisurely bagel at Coffee Bean.

These are probably very common scenes and you may wonder why I am waxing lyrical. But oh how I wish I could join them!

Oh just for an unhurried cup of coffee, and a decent breakfast where I can taste and savour, not chomp and gulp and rush to work.

Sitting at sidewalk cafes and watching the world go by sounds like everyone's dream of Parisian vacations. But you don't need to fly so far, or do it in the romantic evenings. Mornings are best, when things are still fresh, and when you get to see the world naked and un-ready - the tables and chairs of eateries stacked up disused, the shutters still closed at Watson’s, the sweepers tidying up the streets....

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