Storytellers bring history to heartland at bicentennial roadshow
Life for Mrs Dolly Leow now is very different from when she was a child some 60 years ago.
There were no mobile phones or television sets, not even plastic bags, she said, recalling her mother would carry a basket to the market.
Mrs Leow, 64, is a storyteller at the Singapore Bicentennial Roadshow @ South East, which was launched yesterday at Wisma Geylang Serai. It runs till April 21.
It is the first roadshow in a series of five that aims to bring history to the heartland so it can be more accessible to Singaporeans.
The storytelling sessions are where individuals like Mrs Leow, or members of different communities such as the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) Veterans League, can share stories from their past.
Said Mrs Leow, who is a childcare literacy teacher: "I want to talk about the way we used to live, without all the trappings.
"We kept ourselves entertained. We looked out for the bread man who would balance his goods on his head. We listened for the 'tock-tock-tock' sound that signified the arrival of the wonton mee man."
Of the storytelling sessions, mayor of the South East District, Dr Maliki Osman, said: "We often look at historical exhibitions as just what's being written, but when you hear the stories, we hope to bring back memories for Singaporeans."
Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin, guest of honour at the launch of the roadshow, said the bicentennial year is a good opportunity for Singaporeans to reflect on the past, celebrate the present and think about the future.
"We are from many communities, cultures and religions but we also have this one shared history," Mr Tan said, adding this shared history has "contributed to where we are today".
There is also a specially curated heritage trail where visitors can learn about the history of landmarks in the Geylang Serai area, including the Khadijah Mosque and the former Geylang Serai fire station.
The next stop for the roadshows is the HDB Hub Atrium. After that, the roadshow will go on to Our Tampines Hub, Northpoint City and Lot One.