I'm a firm believer of the saying "Things happen for a good reason". Too many uncanny things have happened in my life, I can't help but believe in fate and serendipity. CH thinks I read too much into things. Anyway, why am I saying this?
I stumbled upon a blog just weeks ago while googling about my old kampung. I got very excited when I came across an account of a filmmaker's personal journey as she recollected her childhood memories of living in Lim Chu Kang, a village that has already died and its spirit dispersed. It touched me so much, I bookmarked her blog.
We've lived in the same kampung and she shares the same family name as me but I know nothing about her. For some reason, I had managed to miss all the newspaper articles about this filmmaker and her acclaimed documentaries on Lim Chu Kang.
It came as a pleasant surprise to find that her documentary is screening at The Arts House tonight and tomorrow evening. I'm not really into the Arts but I feel so strongly about this, I must go to the screening tomorrow.
The film synopsis says:
Diminishing Memories I (50mins) takes you on a personal journey with Eng Yee Peng, the filmmaker, to recollect her childhood memories of living in Lim Chu Kang, a village that has already died and its spirit dispersed. Find out more about the former Lim Chu Kang community and landscape; with the use of archival photographs, old 16-mm film footage, interviews of former residents, and an animation that will piece together memories of kampong life that is almost unheard of today.
Diminishing Memories II (49mins) Prompted by the Singapore government’s recent announcement of a plan to turn Lim Chu Kang into an agriculture-cum-entertainment attraction, Yee Peng sets out to revisit vestiges of her haunting childhood for the second time. A new film with fresh content on interviews with the new investors and current tenants of Lim Chu Kang, Yee Peng is forced to face the deepest fear in her heart. Find out how she learns to accept the much-changed Lim Chu Kang community and how the evolving times have also altered its spirit.
To me, it is more than just a documentary. I spent the first 20 years of my life in the same village. It's going to be a nostalgic journey for me. Pass me the tissue box.
Like what she said, 'I feel for this land.'
'You know, it's hard to know what I mean if you have never lived in a kampung,' she continues.
'Growing up in a kampung, my bare feet walked, jumped and ran on the soil beneath me. I played in the rain. I heard it on the zinc roof, I smelled it and touched it. I felt at one with the environment.'