Singapore

Ice cream man gives out free ice cream on 70th birthday

Ice-cream vendor gives out 1,000 free servings of ice cream on his birthday

How would you celebrate your 70th birthday?

Ice-cream vendor Jimmy Teng marked his special day on Tuesday afternoon by giving his customers free ice cream.

"It's my birthday. My treat," he told customers at his ice cream stand outside Lavender MRT station.

Many customers were surprised. Some insisted that they pay for the ice cream. Others gave him a red packet.

And everyone wished the uncle a happy birthday.

On Monday, Mr Teng, known affectionately by many as Uncle Jimmy, announced on his Facebook page that he would be giving out 700 servings of free ice cream to mark his 70th birthday.

But he prepared 1,000 servings instead, which cost him a few hundred dollars. He managed to give out about 900 servings after six hours.

It was his way of thanking his customers for their support, he told The New Paper.

Mr Teng, who lives with his 40-year-old daughter after his wife died last year, has been selling ice cream near the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) Building in Lavender for the last 12 years.

But this is the first time he has given out free ice cream.

And with every wish of "happy birthday", his smile grew wider and wider.

"I'm so happy," he said in Mandarin. "I wouldn't be this happy if I won the lottery!"

His happiness was shared by many around him, who were appreciative of his generosity.

Mr Ngu Yen Anh Tuan, 20, found out about the free scoops when he passed by Mr Teng's stand on the way to collect his student pass at the ICA Building.

He said: "It's a small gesture, but I'm happy to receive it."

GOOD FRIEND

The "promotion" was just one of Mr Teng's many generous gestures.

Mr Haresh Vishinda, 45, was in a wheelchair in front of Mr Teng's stand, shouting out to passers-by: "Free ice cream!"

Mr Haresh has been Mr Teng's regular customer for five years, and the two have become friends. When Mr Haresh lost one of his legs to diabetes two years ago, Mr Teng lent him money.

"He's supported me in many ways," said Mr Haresh, who is single. "When I'm sad, he'll cheer me up. When I've got a problem, he'll try to solve it. He has a good heart for the less fortunate."

'I'm so happy... I wouldn't be this happy if I won the lottery!'

- Ice-cream vendor Jimmy Teng

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