Open doors, a welcome understood


Singapore Memory
Tok, Teck Bok

I grew up living in a kampong near Clementi and only moved to a three-room HDB flat with my family in the 1980s.
The Kampong days I dearly miss. Compared to the flat-dwelling lifestyle, in the past people were more open
towards each other. People were more friendly, mixed with anyone and were more conversant in the variety of local
languages. Even though a person might be Indian, he mixed well with the Chinese & Malay communities and spoke
Hokkien, Tamil, Malay and English. He learnt Malay in school & Hokkien from his friends.
In my village, there were about 30 to 40 families and we depended a lot on each other. As such, we also knew more
about our neighbours in those days unlike how it is when you live in flats, where people mind their own business and
keep their doors shut.Race and religion wasn’t an obstacle. In those days, I liked playing soccer with peers amongst my neighbours and
friends in an open field.
My local favourite national sportsman is Fandi Ahmad!