Rochor Centre, Singapore, 2016
It’s her last day her at Rochor, most items have been moved to her new home, the old apartment almost empty. “When I moved here, I was 35. Now, I am 70. It was in 1977 I still remember, and a month later we celebrated Chinese New Year in this flat.. wow, it was a good time.”
Mdm Syn’s walls are painted a deep green today because the widow does not want to clean the walls (in her spotlessly clean home). “It isn’t cheap emulsion paint, mine is epoxy, the surface is smooth and when you wipe, the paint doesn’t come off, it has a matt sheen. I choose deep green because you can’t see the dirt. What I can’t bare to part with the most is my pink kitchen. You know, I worked hard to pay for this kitchen. Soon, it will be rubbles. It will be an impossible sight.”
“Tomorrow when the movers come for the rocking chair, I will have them handcarry it and instruct them not to scratch it. I bought this more than 30 years ago with my sister, we each have one. The wood is so smooth and beautiful now because I sit on it everyday. No money in the world can buy this chair, I wouldn’t sell it even if someone offered a fortune,” said Mdm Syn, who has given away most of her furniture to people who came knocking at her door asking for donations.
“You see the joints? There are no screws here, the entire chair is made of wooden joints from India.”