We often visited the Sultan's Gardens in Johore Bahru. The Sultan's Palace was close by but I don't remember it all. I think that all the buildings were closed to the public but the grounds were open on most days.
There was really only one reason why I wanted to go there and that was to feed the fish! At the time, I just thought they were goldfish like the ones I bought from the coldstore and kept in a jam jar but they were actually, of course, Koi Carp. Mum would save all our old bread, she's holding a loaf in this picture, and we'd run off towards the pond and happily feed them. They loved bread too and must have been a lot fatter by the end of the day because all the
kids fed them it. I wonder what the Sultan would have made of it all? Thinking about it now, I wonder if all that bread perhaps killed some of the fish? It probably wasn't good for them though they certainly seemed to enjoy it.
If you've seen our home movies on this blog, then you'll have seen us all happily feeding them. I had to be lifted up because I couldn't see over the ledge. From the pond, there were great views of the Johore Straits but I think I was so mesmerised by the fish that I didn't notice much else in the gardens!
When you're a kid, anything to do with animals fascinates you. Like other kids my age then, I loved the monkeys in the Botanic Gardens and I loved seeing all the animals in Johore Zoo also. Seeing elephants on our way to Penang and being told that there were tigers in the nearby jungle close to our house just seemed a natural thing back then. I'd probably run a mile now if someone suggested there was a tiger nearby!