Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Night Rider

Tonight, I went on a bike ride that spanned from the centre of the island to the west and back to the central region again.  I took pics along the way and if you will let me take you by the hand and lead you through the streets, I'll show you something about the history of this lovely tropical island.

First stop on my bike was:

This is the church that gained notoriety for organising a group to take over AWARE, a women's organisation, last year.  The church is known for its strong anti-gay stand.  I looked for the banner that says "GAY BUT NOT HAPPY?  CALL US AT...."  but it was nowhere to be seen.  My children spotted it years ago when we happened to drive past the church but it must have been taken down.  After the take-over of AWARE's exco, the church group was ignominiously ousted when Singapore's women showed solidarity in repulsing the group and passing a vote of no-confidence against the new exco which was shamefully removed.  Even though the Senior Pastor, Derek Hong urged the church members to give their support to the take-over group and many of the women joined AWARE as members in order to be able to vote for the new exco, they were nonetheless trounced.  It attracted so much national attention that Singapore's Deputy Prime Minister voiced his disapproval of the group and cautioned that religion and politics had to be kept separate.  See this link.   Thank God that the Singapore public and the Singapore Government are levelheaded.

That church is in the west.  Next stop is

On Saturday nights up to the early hours of the morning, this place is crawling with party-goers.  There are many dance clubs, pubs and restaurants here.  But it was a bit dead when I was there.  Look at the street itself

This is Robertson Walk.  You can barely make out the name.

I've never really noticed this delightful temple just opposite Robertson Walk

Next stop is the heart of Singapore: Orchard Road.  Someone once told me that Orchard Road was the Oxford Street of Singapore.  Always on the side of the underdog, I corrected him: Oxford Street, I stressed, was the Orchard Road of London.

There's Wheelock Place, to my left is ION.      [Time stamp: 12:32am]

You can see how dead Orchard Road was and it was just a little after midnight.  That's CK Tang.  Notice how deserted Orchard Road was.

And here is the busiest junction in Singapore, where Scotts Road meets Orchard Road.  You can hardly spot a single car.  This was the last photo I took and the time stamp says it was 12:33am and it was almost completely deserted.  Well, I suppose I was wrong.  Orchard Road is the Oxford Street of Singapore and not the other way round.  One just has to be truthful.

Total distance: 17.76km

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