Monday, November 30, 2015

Malay Road Toponyms 8

Jalan Bumbong
     جالن بومبوڠ

Jalan Bumbong is translated from Malay as "Roof Road". Roads within Woodlands Park Estate are named after building fixtures. Flanked by private residential houses, the road first appeared on maps in 1969.

Jalan Chermat
     جالن چيرمت

Jalan Chermat, spelled in the older spelling of cermat is used to describe someone who is careful. Located off Upper Paya Lebar Road, it links to Lorong Liew Lian and is flanked by landed houses.

Jalan Dinding
    جالن دينديڠ

Jalan Dinding is located in Woodlands Park Estate. Dinding is Malay for ceiling. The road first appeared on maps in 1969. The roads within the estate follows a theme of naming after building fixtures.

Jalan Gelegar
    جالن ڬيليڬر

Jalan Gelegar is located in Woodlands Park Estate, first appearing on maps in 1969. Gelegar is described to wooden beams that support the floor of the house, usually meant for kampong houses. The roads within the estate follows a theme of naming after building fixtures.

Jalan Gotong Royong
      جالن ڬوتوڠ رويوڠ

Jalan Gotong Royong is located within Tau Keng Gardens, a private residential estate off Upper Paya Lebar Road. Gotong Royong basically translates to mutual cooperation, to come together and help each other achieve a common goal. The road first appeared on maps in 1963.

Jalan Jendela
    جالن جنديلا

Located within Woodlands Park Estate, Jalan Jendela is flanked by private houses. As with all other roads in the estate, it is named after a building fixture. Jendela is the formal Malay term for "window".

Jalan Kasau
   جالن كاساو

Kasau is described to be a wooden cross on the roof of a house in order to support it. Jalan Kasau is located within Woodlands Park Estate and is flanked by private houses. The roads within the estate follows a theme of naming after building fixtures.

Jalan Kelichap
     جالن كليچڤ

Jalan Kelichap is flanked by 70s era private housing. Located within Tia Ken Gardens, off Upper Paya Lebar Road, the road first appeared in maps in 1969. The estate itself was once known as "Raya Gardens". Kelichap, spelt in its older spelling of "kelicap", is described to be a type of bird known as sunbirds in English.

Jalan Kesoma
     جالن كسوم

Jalan Kesoma is located off Lorong Ong Lye, near Upper Paya Lebar Road. Kesoma, spelt in the older spelling of kesuma is translated to be "flower". The road is flanked by a empty field on one side and private landed housing on the other.

Jalan Korban
    جالن كوربن

Korban is Malay for sacrifice. Flanked by private houses, Jalan Korban is located within Tau Keng Gardens Estate. The road first appeared on maps in 1963.

Jalan Kurnia
    جالن كورنيا

Jalan Kurnia is located within Tau Keng Gardens, a private residential estate off Upper Paya Lebar Road. Kurnia in Malay means to show mercy or compassion. The road first appeared on maps in 1963.

Jalan Lokam
     جالن لوكم

Jalan Lokam first appeared on maps in 1966. The road is located off Upper Paya Lebar Road. "Lokam", in the older spelling of "lekam" means to hold something with your thumb and forefinger.

Jalan Mahir
   جالن ماهير

A minor road within Tau Keng Gardens, Jalan Mahir serves as an address for the private houses there. Mahir in Malay is used to describe someone who is adept and skillful at something. The road first appeared on maps in 1963.

Jalan Rasok
جالن راسوق

As with all roads in Woodlands Park Estate, a private housing estate, the road is named after building fixtures Rasuk, spelled in the older spelling "rasuk" means "beam" or "pillar" in Malay.

Jalan Usaha
   جالن اوسها

Jalan Usaha is located in Tau Keng Gardens, off Upper Paya Lebar Road. Flanked by private houses, the road first appeared on maps in 1963. Usaha means "effort" in Malay.

Lorong Ah Soo
   لوروڠ ه سواو

Lorong Ah Soo is named after Ng Ah Soo, who lived and owned much of the land in the area. He passed away in 1929. Located off Upper Paya Lebar Road, the road today is a major arterial dual carriageway linking to Hougang Avenue 3. At one time, there was also a "Lorong Ah Soo Selatan", just off Lorong Ah Soo.

Lorong How Sun
   لوروڠ هوو سون

Lorong How Sun was officially named sometime in 1958 - 1959. The road was spawned from How Sun Road and How Sun Avenue. These roads are currently flanked by private housing. In Cantonese, "How Sun" means "Young".

Lorong Liew Lian
     لوروڠ ليايو لين

Following a trend to name roads after local fruits in the area, liew lian is the Hokkien corruption of Durian. Previously the site of Kampong Liew Lian, Lorong Liew Lian was named in 1956 and is located off Upper Serangoon Road. The road currently houses private residential houses and condominiums. Liew Lian Vale is also spawned from the road.

Lorong Ong Lye
   لوروڠ اوڠ لياي

Lorong Ong Lye, named in 1956, means "pineapple" in Hokkien. The road is located after Lorong Liew Lian and houses several private houses there. As with Lorong Liew Lian, the road follows a trend of roads after local fruits.

Previous - Malay Road Toponyms 7
Next- Malay Road Toponyms 9

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Throwback Thursday

Computer has been giving a lot of problems these past few weeks. For some reason after upgrading to Windows 10, there has been more problems than there is conveniences for me. It has been a regretful decision for me to have clicked on that prompting "update to Windows 10" button on the screen. But I guess I couldn't be turned back and I do look forward to replacing this laptop real soon.

In the meantime, in light to these computer problems, I have decided to upload some of my photos and memories on the blog as a keepsake as I fear that someday, my future laptops, external hard drives and other back-up storage devices may fail me.

Kindergarten Class Photo

You can really see who is the stubborn one in the photo.
I found this picture while cleaning up my computer and guess what, this was me during kindergarten. As I recalled, I was only sent to K1 and went to primary 1 after that for unknown reasons. The kindergarten I went to was Kindergarten Masjid Hajjah Rahimabi Kebun Limau, a mosque near Kim Keat Road at Balestier.

Old Nokia Cellphones

The phones I used to own.
From left to right, Nokia 1220, Nokia N95, Nokia 5530 XpressMusic, Nokia 205, Nokia N9 and Samsung Galaxy S2.

I was a loyal Nokia fanboy probably till the almost very end before they adopted the Microsoft Mobile OS and ever since then, it went downhill from there. The Nokia N9 was the last Nokia phone I ever owned and I bought it simply because of the name. It was a great phone. The camera was awesome, the MeeGo OS was fluid and the phone is nice to use. But it lacked the apps and other advantages that Android and Apple phones have. After a few months of using, I was already bored with the phone and finally jumped ship into Android by buying the Galaxy S2. The N9 investment was a bad one as I bought it without contract for $800 and sold it off to the Bedok Cash Converters for $90.

As for the other phones, in order to make room, I donated it to the Salvation Army, thanks to my attempt to be a minimalist and owned fewer things.

Secondary School Class Photos

CPA Assignment
Another golden memory found in my computer. This was one of the few keepsakes I have of my secondary school class. I wasn't really close and didn't really mix well with them. I recalled doing this assignment during secondary two during the first month of school in January. Those days, I sported a "rambut jambul" look, typical of the trend of those days. I tried to get as much photos into this one printed page as possible, but for some reason, the edges were cut off and not printed. Ohhh... Sweet memories of my secondary school class!

Former "Rock" Band. Audiopilots/Back to the Disaster

I remembered sometime in secondary 2, I used to be in a "rock band". We started with 4 members, myself, best friend Ashraf, Shahril and Ariff. Me and Shahril go wayy back since East View Primary, but since the band, it was me and Ashraf that became my best friend and still going strong till today.

Anyways, it was motivated in secondary one when Shahril let his intentions to me that he wanted to start a band. It became a reality when in the following year, I started mixing with people out of my class (I was in normal technical, the rest was in normal academic). In our first roles, I was supposed to be a rhythm guitarist, Ashraf the bassist, Ariff the drummer and Shahril the lead guitarist and singer. But we switched when Ariff struggled to read drum chords and myself unable to play the guitar at all. And myself and Ariff switched roles.

Soon, we first covered the song "The Girl that the Bad Guys Want" by Bowling for Soup. Since then we also covered songs from Green Day, Fall Out Boy and other popular and "in" rock bands at that time.

"Back to the Disaster", Prom 2006
Sadly, it didn't last long with Shahril. Me and the rest of the guys had some fall outs with him and he was soon kicked out from the band he formed himself. We then brought in another guy, Farhan Suhaimi. This time the line up consists of Ashraf, the singer and bassist, Farhan Suhaimi the lead guitarist, Ariff the rhythm guitarist and myself the drummer. The band was also renamed to "Back to the Disaster", after the lyrics in "Memory" by Sugarcult.
Military style pose.
Our first performance is probably prom 2006, when we covered "Memory" on stage in front of the graduating class. We were then thinking big, hoping to perform in Baybeats at Esplanade and other gigs. For a short while, I brought in another friend of mine, Syera, as our singer.

Formal shot....
Informal shot.....
But then soon, we had our own internal problems. For some reason, we couldn't agree on what songs we wanted to cover and I was criticized for my song choices and for not learning the other guys song choices. Other commitments and schedule conflicts soon arise and we disbanded soon after and that was like when the guys graduated after like one year from secondary school.

My Last Wendy's Meal

The Wendy's outlet at Lau Pa Sat, February 2015.
I love Wendy's. Ever since they opened sometime in 2010s they opened an outlet here. my favorites are the Spicy Chicken Burger and their specialty, Chili Cheese Fries. But sadly, they didn't last too long and they closed their Century Square outlet early 2015. Nobody suspected anything until another store closed down a few months later. News actually came out that Kopitiam, Wendy's franchiser in Singapore was looking to sell their franchise but to no avail. That wast when rumors started spreading on the internet that Wendy's was closing down in Singapore.
The entrance into the former Wendy's Lau Pa Sat outlet.
So I decided to make a trip to Wendy's for one last time. Sadly. by that time, only two outlets were left, one at Lau Pa Sat and the other at University Town. The menu only consists of Baconators and Fish Burgers at that time as they had already sold off the rest and are not replenishing stock.
The last Wendy's meal I had in Singapore
With a heavy heart, I bought a meal for myself and a takeaway for my fiancee. I was quite surprised that she never ate Wendy's before. After my meal, I thanked the staff and took a photo with them as a keepsake before delivering the food to my fiancee.
With the friendly Wendy's staff

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Old Police Academy

Being an auxiliary police officer with two different companies, I had to go through auxiliary police training twice at Old Police Academy (OPA).

Me and Terence infront of the Old Police Academy sign.

A formal group photo with my squad upon graduation.
Group shot with the other APFs at the former OPA mess.


Police Training School as depicted in 1963 map
OPA on Google Maps. Construction is already on the way.
Police Academy at then Demdam Road, first functioned as the permanent home of what was then known as the Police Depot in 1929. It continued to serve as a police training ground when the Police Depot was renamed the Police Training School in 1945, and during the period from 16 September 1963 to 1965 when Singapore was part of Malaysia and the school was named Sekolah Latihan Polis before reverting to its former name upon Singapore's independence.

In 1969, the Police Training School was elevated to a full academy and took on the name of "Singapore Police Academy" (SPA), when then Minister for Interior and Defence, Lim Kim San officiated the ceremony on 2 August 1969. The Singapore Police Academy functioned as the operation side of police training, while the staff functions came under the Police Training Department, before the two were formally merged as the Training Command (TRACOM) in 1997. The name "Police Academy", however, was retained mainly in reference to the training campus.

Historic Photographs

These are historic photographs of the institution dated since the 60s I found and complied all over the internet. My apologizes if I had posted without permission. Do get in touch with me for credit and removal.
The entrance during pre-independent Singapore. The sign is in Malay for "Singapore Police Training School"
The open field at OPA. Female trainees are depicted exercising in the photo.
60's era policeman shooting at the shooting range
The mosque at OPA. It has since been demolished.
Trainee Barracks at the back of OPA
Trainee Barracks at the back of OPA
Motivating mural on trainee barracks 
Old parade uniforms, looking much closer to the Malaysian Police counterparts.
Police trainees in the barracks.

OCTs at the old mess
At the OPA Dojo Hall.

Old Police Academy Today

On 31 December 2005, all training and school functions were moved to then newly built Home Team Academy. PNS trainees of 121st intake and 42nd OCT batch was the last batch to pass out of Police Academy

OPA is however still used as a training ground by Auxiliary Police Force, SATS, Certis CISCO and AETOS. By 2013, when I was there, AETOS Training Academy and Certis CISCO Academy, Police National Service Department, was still based there. Most of the former barracks are left guttered and empty by that time

My SATS Police squad during training.
The start of our classroom lessons
With the rest of the squad
Meeting a fellow officer and friend
Me and Terence at the old mess.
Camp life.
Heading for lessons

As an officer who once trained on the legendary training grounds there, I was sad that news came out that Old Police Academy was to be redeveloped into an MRT station and high rise condominiums. It would be years before I could have thought to properly document my experience while I was there, but it never really crossed my mind until the blog came to be.

My Complied Findings.

As I can no longer get access to OPA, given that I have no business there as I'm no longer a trainee and also many of the roads and access have been closed off to facilitate with the demolishing and construction of the area, I had to compile photos rather than going there myself to take fresh ones.

After digging through my computer and hard disks once more, and going through Facebook and Google for priceless pictures, I complied all my photographs and poured out all my knowledge into this article. My apologizes if I used your photograph without your permission. Do get in touch with me for credit or if you want them taken down.

A directional sign at Mount Pleasant Road

Names of OPA Paths

Similar to the camps and bases of the Singapore Armed Forces, the paths within Old Police Academy are named like normal roads in Singapore but are not recognized by the LTA. The roads are named purely for the sake of decorations. It is also interesting to note that majority of the roads are named in Malay. I presumed that they were named during the 60s when Malay was in widespread use.

Dendam Road - Named in 1929 after Inspector General of Police, G.C. Denham
Jalan Bukit - Hill Road
Jalan Bunga - Flower Road
Jalan Kesusahan - Toughness Road
Jalan Serene - Tranquil Road
Jalan Silat - Silat, a Malay martial art form
Jalan Ujong - Older spelling of "Hujung" meaning "end".

Padang Hitam, OPA's parade square.
Jalan Kesusahan sign
Jalan Kesusahan, the start and end of the 2.4 route. Thanks to the road namesake, buttjokes and puns of running and training for 2.4 IPPT runs are made by trainees.
Further down Jalan Kesusahan
The former Police IPPT Centre at the end of the road
IPPT route now ends here. behind the fencing is the construction for Mount Pleasant MRT
Jalan Silat, facing the open field used frequently for soccer practices and matches.
Open field
Open field. Jalan Silat is to the Left
Open field. To the right is the changing room and toilets
The big tree at the field.
Frequent soccer practice and matches are held here.
Former Aetos Security Management building. To the left is the former Dojo Hall
OPA shooting range. Currently used by auxiliary police forces for their shoot.
Outside the range
Jalan Bunga. The carpark behind it was where the former site of the mosque.
Jalan Bunga

Where PNSD used to be based.

Jalan Bukit
To the left of Jalan Bukit is the swimming pool, opened by Lee Kuan Yew on Febuary 1977
Another photo
Going up on the namesake hill of Jalan Bukit is Certis CISCO Academy
The lecture theater at the former Certis CISCO Academy
Where AETOS Training Academy used to be.
The tennis court to the right of Jalan Bukit
Block 23, where CISCO once occupied the barracks
Another photo of Block 23.
Behind block 23, the showers and toilets.
Jalan Serene. At the backdrop is the former mess.
The building formerly occupied by AETOS Training Academy
More Photos
One of the former kampong barracks. Formerly used by Aetos as trainee barracks.
The mess as viewed from Jalan Ujong
Barracks at Jalan Ujong
A sign proclaiming "out of bounds" to all male persons.
Training shed along Jalan Ujong


A policeman and a soccer player sharing a lighter moment.
One last view.
Thanks for the memories!
For the many generations of officers who trained here, I personally knew many who were sad that Old Police Academy is coming down to a pile of bricks. Even myself as I have made sentimental memories from training here. I really admire the rustic and serene atmosphere.

Being a restricted area, the public naturally has no access. A blessing in disguise as this has kept OPA preserved and pristine for decades.

If the authority permits me, I propose to keep the roads and the road names within the academy into the newly build estate. The current tracks can be widen to serve the future traffic. Also, some of the colonial blocks located along Dendam Road can be retained as potential entrances and exits of the future Mount Pleasant MRT and "Art in Transit" installations can depict to showcase the grounds the station is built on the history and heritage of the former training ground.