Monday, 28 December 2009
This cereal packet shows the cereal I remember the most and the free gifts, 'mini-models'. I wonder how many people remember these? There was a double decker bus, a penny farthing, a covered wagon, a locomotive, a steam engine and a car. We collected them all and I can even remember mum and dad having them on display in a cabinet in the front room! We'd get all our shopping from the little shop across the way from us at Jalan Wijaya and one reason I remember the cereal so much is that, one day, we bought a packet and when we got home, it was just full of ants! This
happened often and I also remember it happening with meringues and any other sugary food. I remember saying to my mum to fish the free gift out before we took the cereal back to the shop but she wouldn't! When we got back to the shop, he just laughed and gave us another box. They were always quite happy about things and it was just a normal occurrence to them that something edible would attract ants.
I loved all the stuff we got from those shops including all the toys. I think all the cheap stuff, that cost next to nothing, impressed me the most. Everything seemed to be 'Made in Japan' in those days.
Here's a menu from George's Steak House which was at Bukit Meldrum in Johore Bahru. We used to go there often and the waiters recognised us after a while. I always had soup and ice-cream and it got to the point that they just brought it to the table before we ordered anything! Although we went often, I remember little about it. I remember that they used to have barbeques in their grounds that we would go to and I remember that we would watch rows of ants climbing up the walls with small crumbs of food. When they got near a picture frame, a chit-chat would jump out and eat the lot!
We must have been quite busy at Christmas 1966 because we have photos at home, photos at the Naval Base party in Singapore and this menu from George's Steak House. The restaurant has, marked on the front of the menu, that we went with my parents' friends', Les and Bette Sharpe and their daughter, Debbie. I wish that I could remember more about it.
On the menu was Prawn Cocktail, Cream of Tomato Soup (my favourite) and Fillet of Sole with Tartare Sauce. Then there was Roast Turkey and York Ham with Chestnut Stuffing, Cranberry Sauce, Potato Maitre d' Hotel. Cauliflower Dubarre and Fresh Garden Peas. There was also Christmas Pudding with Brandy Sauce, Mince Pies, Assorted Nuts, Vanilla Ice Cream (another favourite) and Coffee with 'Christmas novelties free of charge' . Sounds great, I wish that I could remember more about it!
Wednesday, 23 December 2009
The Christmas cards sent in the 1960s had a different look to the ones nowadays especially the ones sent in Singapore and Malaya at the time.
My parents kept a few and some of them are shown here. The first card has a very Far East feel to it. It was sent to us by my parents' landlords when we lived at Jalan Wijaya. It's dated 1967 and reads inside, 'To Mr and Mrs Tait and children. Best wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy and Prosperous New Year from Mr and Mrs Dider Singh and Mr and Mrs Daljit Singh.' I remember there were quite a few Singh brothers who were all very friendly and would come around to our house when anything had to be discussed like the rent.
The second card comes from my parents' friend and my dad's work colleague at KD Malaya, Omar Mahmood. It say 'Bonne Annee' on the front which I think translates to 'Happy New Year'. Inside it reads, 'I wish you and family a Merry Christmas and enjoy your new year. May prosperity and harmony be bestowed to family. From intimate friend, Omar.'
The third card comes from my dad's good friend, Poon, who he also worked with at KD Malaya. It's a Naval Christmas card and was sent in 1969 after we returned to England and says inside,' Merry Christmas and best wishes for a happy new year. Love, Poon, Kim and William.' Poon has written a message inside saying that he will soon be leaving the Navy. Unfortunately, we all lost
It's lovely having these Christmas cards and I often wonder what has happened to Poon, Omar and the Singh family over the last 40 years. I hope they're all well wherever they are. It seems a shame that you lose touch with people over the years, it has been a very long time though!
Tuesday, 22 December 2009
Friday, 18 December 2009
Monday, 14 December 2009
Here's a photo of my Royal Naval School badge from Singapore. I'm surprised that I still have mine but I'm pleased that I do. Mine says 'Singapore' even though I went to school at Kebunteh in Malaya.
Many of us had these at the time but, unfortunately, many have been lost over the years. If, like me, you're nostalgic for anything connected with your time in Singapore and Malaya, you probably, if you've lost yours, would like another one. The good news is that in January 2010, I am having replicas made up and will be selling them for £2.99 each. You can order yours now, if you want, but they won't be ready until January sometime.
If you want one, please pay by PayPal, there's more details here
(Sorry, this is an old posting and they are no longer available)