Tuesday, September 04, 2001

Orchard Road

It was about 8.30am on Sunday. I was on bus no. 7, on my way to meet some of my team mates at Orchard Emerald. From there, we would go down to the Kallang ‘Diamond’ to catch some baseball or softball matches. The matches, organised by SBSA (Singapore Baseball & Softball Association) are played league styled. I received a call on my mobile, saying that ALL of them will be 15 minutes late. Since I was nearing the bus stop outside Lucky Plaza, I reckon that after buying breakfast and Sunday’s copy of The New Paper from 7-11 and then taking a slow walk down to Orchard Emerald, I would still be “early”. I dropped at the bus stop, bought the stuff I wanted and headed down to Orchard Emerald.

As I took my slow walk down, I saw a different side of Orchard Road. It was a different sight when compared from what you would see at other times. Times like peak hours, shopping hours, from 10.30pm to 12mn and from around 9am to 9.30am. Yes, 9am to 9.30am. I would be at Orchard Road around that time when I was still working at Takashimaya. Those would be those days where I had to report for morning or full shift at work. Compared to the 8.30am ‘look’ of Orchard Road, it was different although there was only at least half an hour’s difference. The 8.30am ‘look’ was kinda miserable. Very few people on the streets except for a tourist couple walking in front of me, a few Filipinos were sitting at the stone benches outside Lucky Plaza, only 2 service staff in 7-11 and none of the shops were opening yet. The 9am ‘look’ had more cars passing by, more people on the street especially tourists taking a walk, more Filipinos waiting around at Lucky Plaza and the sound of the metal “gates” sealing the entrances of the shops can be heard lifting up.

Besides the beach or the park, this is a sight of (can I call that) relaxation. It kinda have that “you zai xian zai” feeling, no one doing much or anything at all. Even the few patrol and security guards I saw looked like they were enjoying the peace and quietness of the normally bustling Orchard Road. Also, I dun think there’s really a need to say that they look in need of some “chess time”, right? Hehe…

I know I’m being an idiot here, but if you have the urge to relax at the beach or something, why not wake up even earlier, take a stroll down Orchard Road. It’d be an eye-opener in some kinda sense. Maybe that will be the day when you’ll notice stuff in Orchard Road which would never have caught your eye in the past, like me. Well, in the past, I’ve never noticed that the building that houses Rolex showroom had barricades and notices warning people that this is a private property and sitting on the steps are not allowed. Singaporeans reading this, give it a try, k? I might give it a try again, (only walking at a slower pace and opening up my eyes a bit more) if I’m gonna meet my team mates this coming Sunday.

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