Growing Up at the Foot of Mount Faber

By : Mufidah Tasneem
07 October 2014

“Epok epok!….” if you find that a familiar call in HDB estates in the past, well, that was a tangible memory of my childhood, growing up at the foot of Mount Faber.

 

My grandmother was the ‘curry puff’ supplier of my block at Telok Blangah Way. And I was the delivery girl, in charge of sending out fragrant puffs and collecting payment (some paid in kind as I was given chocolates, too!) I was affectionately called “girl ah” by most residents in the block who ironically may not know my name. Till today, this term of endearment holds a special place in my heart.

 

Memories are made of these: delivering curry puffs to my neighbours in Telok Blangah Way

Precious first years

I would also accompany my late grandfather at least once a week to a nearby bird shop to hear songbirds do what they do best! I was five then, and remembered sitting on steps surrounded by bird cages – taking in chirping melodies (and interrupted by the occasional loud screech) and watching parrots flaunt their showy antics. The bird shop at Telok Blangah Rise at Block 38 was, and still is a favourite spot for bird enthusiasts.

 

Fun snaps then: My brother (left) and I at home. Built in 1974, my flat featured these terrazzo tiles. Marble and parquet floor tiles were not as popular as today.

Telok Blangah Recollections

If Telok Blangah estate rings a bell, it may be because the entire estate (Telok Blangah Way, Rise, Crescent, Heights, Drive) is located at the foot of the popular tourist destination, Mount Faber.

In recent years, it is also known for the landmarks that it is home to. There is the Alkaff Mansion, a 19th-century colonial bungalow built by wealthy Arabs known as ‘Alkaff’, the 274m-long and 8m-wide Henderson Waves, which connects Mount Faber to Telok Blangah Hill Park, the Al-Amin mosque which is inspired by Sumatran Minangkabau architecture, the SAFRA Mount Faber club and the Central Manpower Base (CMPB) nearby.

Telok Blangah estate is part of Bukit Merah town, located behind Keppel Harbour. According to the book ‘Singapore Street Names’ by Victor R Savage and Brenda S A Yeoh, Telok Blangah got its name from the shape of the bay, which looks like a cooking pot. In Malay, ‘Telok’ means bay, while ‘Blanga’ are clay cooking pots used by southern Indians.

For an estate which means ‘cooking pot bay’ in Malay, Telok Blangah brims with happy memories of family, melodious songbirds, and curry puffs!

 

What is your neighbourhood best known for? Tell us on mynicehome@mailbox.hdb.gov.sg.

An article to commemorate our

 

Telok Blangah Recollections

If Telok Blangah estate rings a bell, it may be because the entire estate (Telok Blangah Way, Rise, Crescent, Heights, Drive) is located at the foot of the popular tourist destination, Mount Faber.

In recent years, it is also known for the landmarks that it is home to. There is the Alkaff Mansion, a 19th-century colonial bungalow built by wealthy Arabs known as ‘Alkaff’, the 274m-long and 8m-wide Henderson Waves, which connects Mount Faber to Telok Blangah Hill Park, the Al-Amin mosque which is inspired by Sumatran Minangkabau architecture, the SAFRA Mount Faber club and the Central Manpower Base (CMPB) nearby.

Telok Blangah estate is part of Bukit Merah town, located behind Keppel Harbour. According to the book ‘Singapore Street Names’ by Victor R Savage and Brenda S A Yeoh, Telok Blangah got its name from the shape of the bay, which looks like a cooking pot. In Malay, ‘Telok’ means bay, while ‘Blanga’ are clay cooking pots used by southern Indians.

For an estate which means ‘cooking pot bay’ in Malay, Telok Blangah brims with happy memories of family, melodious songbirds, and curry puffs!

 

What is your neighbourhood best known for? Tell us on mynicehome@mailbox.hdb.gov.sg.

An article to commemorate our

 


Tags: Bukit Merah,


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