Sunday, October 19, 2008

A short visit to Singapore

During my 9 hour-stopover in Singapore en route to Zurich on Monday, I met up with a fellow nature blogger, Ria Tan. She does the Wild Shores of Singapore blog.

Ria is a really amazing person:

- She has done shore walks (for years) in the hope of raising awareness among the people about the precious shores that Singapore still has. (I agreed that if the people are going to lose the shores to housing projects etc, they should know what they are losing.)

- She has written a guidebook on Chek Jawa, a shore on the Ubin Island of Singapore. And now there's plan to churn out the second one, and the new book will cover more shores in Singapore.




- Her photos can be seen in many places on the Ubin Island, e.g. on signs erected on boardwalks, in exhibitions on the island, and even vending machines! She humbly said that the reason for it was that she let them (the authorities) use the images for free.



- She was involved in the publication of this impressive brochure, published by the Blue Water Volunteers.





She was kind to take me on a walk around the Ubin Island. The dense tropical forest smelt so familiar. Unfortunately I was there when the tide was high, so I missed the opportunity to see those amazing creatures described in her guidebook. On the day of my stopover, low tide happened around 8 pm, my departure time.

Anyway, we had a good chat about the challenges she and other nature lovers in Singapore are facing in the conservation of their shores. And the next time I visit Singapore again, I will make sure I stay for a few days so that I could visit the shores - at low tide.

Additional Note (23 Oct 08):
Thanks to Jeffrey who pointed out that the brochure was actually published by www.wildsingapore.com. His comment as follows:

Just a small comment .. the guidesheet (or brochure, as you call it) is published by WildSingapore. BWV volunteers (listed on the back of the guidesheet) contributed to the content, but it owes its existance mainly to Ria's efforts.

Jeff :)

10 comments:

ria said...

Wow! You're much too kind in your post.

It was a real treat to meet a kindred shore explorer and share my favourite shore with you. Through your eyes, I saw our wild places with a fresh perspective and have gained new inspiration!

Would be wonderful if you had more time and we could explore more of Singapore's wild places. Looking forward to that!

Anonymous said...

A bird doesn't sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song to share to all.
:)

Tsun-Thai Chai said...

Dear Ria,

First of all, despite those obstacles you guys are facing, you still try to help conserve the Singaporean shores. If that is not patriotic, what is.

Second, it is not just Singapore, you are doing something for the marine ecosystems or nature in general. That's important if you buy the idea of "one ocean" or that all ecosystems on earth are interrelated or interdependent.

I wish I could be as enthusiastic or motivated as all of you.

I really believe you guys have done great work. Keep it up!

Jeffrey said...

Just a small comment .. the guidesheet (or brochure, as you call it) is published by WildSingapore. BWV volunteers (listed on the back of the guidesheet) contributed to the content, but it owes its existance mainly to Ria's efforts.

Jeff :)

Tsun-Thai Chai said...

Thanks, Jeff

Mosura said...

Great post. As a side point, I didn't realise until now that English was one of Singapore's official languages.

.....and Ria - You're a champion!

ria said...

Oh wow, you guys are much too kind.

Many many hearts and hands are part of this endless work. In Singapore and on other shores of this Great Ocean Planet :-)

I am constantly encouraged by how the work brings so many like-hearted souls together.

Thank you Chai for introducing Singapore to new friends.

Denis Wilson said...

Hi Chai
You obviously have a fellow "beach-comber" there in Singapore.
It should give you some inspiration to see similar interests to yours being put to good use.
Cheers
Denis

Tsun-Thai Chai said...

Hi Denis,

After meeting up with Ria, I have decided that the next time I am in the eastern states, I must make an effort to visit fellow nature bloggers like yourself and Alan too.

Denis Wilson said...

Hi Chai.
I would be delighted to meet you some time. I am not in for much travel, but if you are ever heading to Sydney that would be easy for me. Alan is a long way south.
Cheers
Denis

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