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Monday, February 3, 2014

Black and White Houses

This year is different than any other year that went before. This year, Petunia decided to look inwards and focus on taking care of herself - physically and emotionally. I really didn't think it would be that difficult to take time to smell the roses... and sleep a lot so that my body can heal. With a bit of practice (and some discipline... and following the endocrinologist's advice to achieve psychological detachment... and consciously planning at least 2 hours a day out in the sunshine, amongst the green), I think I am getting better at it.

In the beginning, it felt funny to NOT go about my day like a coiled spring, eager to get things done... and done perfectly. I couldn't shake off the feeling that I was a lazy bum... too lazy to even blog (which I love to do). After a bit, with a bit of nagging from The Daughter and The Husband (who hated to see me collapse from exhaustion) I decided to embrace my lazy bum-ness.

It has helped a good deal. My energy levels are slowly coming back. 

As part of my daily routine, I take the bike out for a spin, exploring my neighbourhood. There is so much beauty in Sembawang. This morning, I went to explore the Black and White houses near Sembawang Beach. It did me a great deal of good just to wander about the peaceful and serene surroundings. The birds REALLY sang this morning. It was almost a cacophony. A squirrel scampered up and looked expectantly at me. I think it expected to be fed something.

Tomorrow I will bring some nuts over to feed it.

Black and white houses copied a feature of traditional Malay kampong houses, built on stilts. Instead of stilts, the houses sit on an elevation of brick pillars. In the days when Singapore flooded regularly, such a feature prevented water damage. Apparently, the design was also a safeguard against wild animals who hunted at night. People slept with the windows open (since there was no air-conditioning) and they didn't want predators climbing in through the window.

The houses hide behind fences of green. These days, there aren't any large predators roaming our jungles. These tenants have furnished the area below the house with outdoor furniture, plants and a barbecue pit. It's really la dolce vita!

The houses come in many sizes. Here is a largish one with an outhouse, which I am guessing used to be the kitchen. The larger houses have spacious lawns that undulate gently over the terrain.

Tucked at the back of many houses, there are swimming pools. Gee... for once I wish I were filthy rich and could afford to stay in such houses.


Sharon said...

So happy for you Dr Pet! You can do it!

Petunia Lee said...

Yup! Mommy Sharon... I can do it!

Malar said...

You're such an amazing person! ;)

Celine said...

Enjoy the 2 hours a day in the sunshine!