Sunday, March 4, 2007

The Singapore Black and Whites

After a brisk walk with kind brisk walkers from MacRitchie to Bukit Tima, I got a chance to go sightseeing today. Past Bollywood, still closed for LNY and then on to check out the Black and Whites, colonial era residences near Seletier Resivoir. We'd heard that they were run down and that only about 1/3rd were occupied. What a shock to see beautifully maintained colonial houses guarding impressive trees. If these were western homes in the US near a big city, you could triple the rent and no one would move out. We were impressed by the mangroves at the end of the resivoir and the small fishing community that lived there. All in all, a very large change from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Joel Sholtes a Place to Visit

If you enjoyed the picture of my daughters, you may want to partake of more photographic art by Joel Sholtes see Is passion one path to creativity?

Sungei Buloh and Dedicated NParks People

A couple of days ago we found our way to Sungei Buloh where we were greeted in Singaporean style by Wong Tuan Wah, Ng Sock Ling, How Choon Beng and Robert Teo Chee Hin. The presentation of a master plan, hospitaltiy, guiding and conversations about Estuary Live were stimulating and beyond expectations. As a monitor lizzard ambled through the facility to a pond in the back, we discussed common educational goals and how we might achieve them.

I was amazed to learn that Sungei Buloh hosts 100000 visitors a year. Understanding was reinforced by a walk punctuated with school kids on field trips. We talked about how to maintain access for all while increasing the perception of available space and abilty of individuals to appreciate thier natural heritage and to be one with nature. I was impressed with the sincerity, dedication, enthusiasm and creativity that the people from NParks bring to thier profession.

We punctuated the trip to Sungei Buloh with a night trip to Mandai Mangroves.
Wai, did a great job of capturing the essence. We saw the impact of erosion on the mangroves, sampled their biology and were forced to consider the complexity of natural systems and their responses to mans activities. Mangrove has a new and very personal meaning that is reinforced with each visit.
Thank you Sivasothi, NParks and all involved for a spectacular experience.