Tuesday, June 3, 2014

A Walk Around My Neighborhood in Singapore

If you keep up with my stories, you know I am a very adventurous kitty who sneaks out of my parents condo and takes adventures all around Singapore. I normally slip undetected on to a double decker bus, hide under a seat upstairs, and then jump off somewhere new, and explore.

Recently I have come to realize I don't always have to go far from my home to see the beauty of this "Red Dot" city/state. I have been taking a 3.5 mile (5.6 kilometer) walk through my neighborhood and have come across some gorgeous landscapes, flowers, and some pretty interesting critters.    

As I pass through a quiet street I come across some lazy pets. I ask them if they want to come along on my adventure but they both say it is too hot and they would rather snooze.

My favorite section of the stroll is going along the path at Sungei Ulu Pandan Canal. People walk, run, and bicycle along the canal enjoying nature at it's best. There are plenty of rest areas along the way for the weary. I enjoy stopping to watch the numerous monitor lizards swimming along the banks looking for fish to eat.

Overhead the MRT passes as well as road traffic.

The most interesting overpass is the remains of an abandoned railroad track.

Runoff water all over Singapore goes through an amazingly designed drainage system. The system around this area spills into the canal through channels that are pleasing to the eye.

As I head home I pass trough a small park, some construction that I messed up, past a street sweeper, and some more potted plants.

I sure live in a beautiful place!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Singapore Community Gardens

The Singapore National Parks Board has a wonderful gardening program described on their web site www.nparks.gov.sg . It provides support for 600 gardening clubs throughout the nation. I found one called Ayer Rajah Zone "1" RC Gardening Club on one of my excursions.

A neighborhood cat named Jake met me at the gate and showed me all around his big garden. He says it is his garden but he doesn't do any work. He says he has a staff of people that do all the hard labor.

The garden is huge and very well organized. It is fenced in and there are stepping stones laid out that separate the different fruits, vegetables and flowers being grown. Jake's staff does a wonderful job weeding and keeping the place well organized and clean.

An odd sight is the plastic bags tied loosely over some of the young fruit to keep bugs away.

 There is a potting shed to store equipment and to start off fragile young plantings. Jake likes to hang out there and sleep in the shade.

 I enjoyed my visit immensely but it was time to go. Before I left, Jake asked me which part of the

garden I like best. Since I am not a big fruit eater, I told him the flowers were my favorites.

I Tried Goat Milk!

Have you ever had fresh goat milk? I tried it and it was great! I guess I need to explain...
There is a goat farm in Singapore called Hay Dairies www.haydairies.com.sg out at the Kranji Countryside www.kranjicountryside.com . I was wandering around the other farms out there when I came across the Hay Dairies unique billy goat sign.

 I walked around the fenced area and noticed how clean everything was. There must have been 300 goats but it didn't stink.

I then walked up to a viewing stand and was amazed to see a group of about ten goats being calmly led up a ramp to the milking area. As each goat stood at it's appointed stall eating some food, a man gingerly lowered a bar over their necks so as not to hurt them. This bar held the goats in place so several men could clean the goats and then hook up hydraulically operated milking machines to each animal. I guess the goats are very used to the process because they all stood still as the pumping machine was turned on. The process took about 10-15 minutes and then the animals were led off to allow another group of ten to go through the same process.

As I walked around there were a few signs explaining a lot about the goat business (Yes, even though I am a cat, I can read quite well!) A very nice gentleman spotted me and asked me if I would like to try some fresh goat milk. I can't speak but rubbed up to him indicating I would love to try some. You see, my parents won't let me drink milk. Since they were not around I figured I should try some.
The nice man opened a little bottle that had been chilled and poured it into a bowl for me to try. Wow, was that good stuff! It is smooth, creamy, and sweet tasting.

Unfortunately, the gentleman had to get back to his work. The whole time I was there, there were cars driving up with people who wanted to buy some milk. One guy had a truck marked Goat Cheese. I guess he must get the milk from here and take it to be processed somewhere else.

I hated to leave but I had to get on down the road to my next stop...a Koi fish farm. I wonder if they were going to let me eat a Koi or two?

I Walked Across Singapore!

There used to be a north/south bound railroad in Singapore that stretched 26 kilometers from Kepple Bay to Woodlands. Most of the tracks have been removed but a path has been preserved and is now called the Green Corridor or the Greenway. There is a lot of internet info on the wonderful web site www.thegreencorridor.org

As you know, I am known as Singapore Kitty and I regularly sneak out of my parents condo to explore the "Red Dot." Early one morning I jumped off a bus in the Kepple Bay Area at a fenced in, beautiful building that had four huge, marvelous statues in front of it. At one time this had been the main train station. The four statues depict commerce, agriculture, industry, and transportation. I walked around the building and saw the original boarding deck where I could imagine lots of people once started their journey across Singapore and on into Malaysia. As there is no longer an active train, there was nothing for me to sneak on to and ride so I just started walking along the trackless path to see where it would lead me.

As I walked along the path I ran into a few joggers, walkers, and bikers but not many. It was mostly a peaceful nature stroll lined with lots of greenery and wildlife. I spotted some small snakes, monitor lizards, monkeys, birds (my favorite was a bright blue King Fisher), butterflies and colorful dragon flies.

After a while I came up to the abandoned Bukit Timah station. It was fenced in to keep people out but the old sign was still up. There was also some track in place that had not been removed.    

Next stop was a cast iron bridge which crossed  Bukit Timah-Dunearn Road. Some track remains here as well.

I was starting to get tired and all four of my paws were really hurting, but I was determined to make it all the way to the end of the path. As I continued on I passed a couple of canals and bridges.

Suddenly I saw a huge grey building on my right. I recognized it as the Woodlands immigration building. I had accidentally gone through it several months ago on another of my adventures. I knew I had to be getting close to the end of the path.

Sure enough, in front of me were huge no trespassing signs and further ahead I could see the remains of the last train station on the Singapore side before arriving in Malaysia.

What a great day I had and what an accomplishment! I'll bet I am the only cat to walk across Singapore! When I finally got home I was exhausted, thirsty and starving.  I think my parents knew something was up since they had to fill my water and food bowls up twice that night!