Thursday, 14 December 2017

Dahlia Dreams @ Gardens By The Bay

The Dahlia Dreams flower festival was incorporated together with the Chinese New Year to welcome the new Monkey year of 2016 in the Chinese Lunar Calendar. Because I had no idea how Dahlia flowers looked like, I decided to pay a visit to the display in the Flower Dome at Gardens By The Bay. Dahlia flowers were actually the national flower of Mexico.  They were round and fluffy with one flower at each stalk, resembling a round ball coming in different colours. They consisted of numerous petals encircling a central core known as the floral head.

As I arrived at Flower Dome, there were queues lining up at the ticketing counter but for me, I had purchased my tickets online so I saved on the hassle. I proceeded straight in and I was taken aback by the beautiful display of Dahlia flowers. It was so mesmerizing to look at them.

The rounded flower balls were so beautiful to look at. It opened my eyes to another world of flowers. I understood that these flowers could only grow in cool climate and that the temperature in this enclosure was at around 18 degrees. It was pretty cooling upon entering as the outside weather was hot. As I walked around, I started to feel the cold air penetrating into me. Luckily that I had my windbreaker with me, which allowed me to continue to stay in the Dome. Other species of Dahlia flowers included those brillant photos below.

Saturday, 13 February 2016

Celebrating Chinese New Year in Singapore

The Chinese New Year is here again. It is basically a festival where Chinese celebrate at the turn of the Lunar Year of the Chinese calendar, also known as the Spring Festival. Located within the heart of Singapore, Chinatown, is a place where the yearly Chinese New Year celebrations were held. Bustling shops and busy tenants would set up their stalls, preparing to welcome the festival. Staying in the neighbourhood doesn't give you the festival feel, therefore I had to make a trip down to Chinatown to have a feel of the festival.

When I arrived at the MRT station, it was already filled with busy shoppers carrying lots of bulky stuffs walking in and out of the station. It had seemed like there were lots of things to buy for this festive season. I walked out onto the main street and there it was, red colour was on displayed everywhere. Red color corresponded with fire, symbolized  joy and good fortune. It also represented good luck when a red packet was given during the Chinese New Year. It was a symbol of happiness, therefore, red can be seen in most joyous occasions such as weddings, childbirth, birthdays, and gifts.

The streets of Chinatown were bustling with red, and it was indeed a place where we should go to feel the festive mood.

There were stalls selling the New Year ornaments, which some of us Chinese believed that it might bring us good luck. We would hang it in our house, sometimes near the door or near the window, hoping luck would come in through those openings. Some would hang it on their bags, hoping that luck followed wherever they were. 

Chinese New Year is also a time where Chinese would feast. We would buy lots of food and goodies, symbolizing that food was ample throughout the year. 

As the night falls, the roads were being lighted up and that was the time where dozens of photographers started getting busy. All kinds of different shots were captured for the perfect photo. 

After snapping some roads photos, I walked back into the streets to see what else could I see. When the night falls, the streets were getting crowded as people flocked down after they knocked off from work. I was having a hard time manoeuvring my way in again. So I decided to bulldozed, and I was in.

Well, I had ended my walk here as it was getting late. Gotta get up for work again the next day. I could clearly feel the festive mood as I made my way home. 

Nearest Station: Chinatown

Thursday, 28 January 2016

Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve

The yearly birds migration season is here again! Well ,last year I didn't have a longer lens to shoot those birds, but this year, I could do it with my new 300mm lens. Was very excited when I visited Sungei Buloh again. I came here almost every weekend to check if I could capture different migratory birds. On top of those birds, I had also captured many other busy animals/insects along the way. Noted that to do bird watching, you had to be really early. I made my way from the reserve at Kranji Reservoir into the wetlands, walking and looking around for interesting happenings.

Some of my rare discoveries along the way included the Lineated Barbet which I understood was originated from the Indian continent, and the Hill Mynah from Thailand. Especially the Lineated Barbet, I was following it from tree to tree, eyeing at it for an opportunity for a clear view to shoot it. As the the hill mynah, I didn't spotted it until it called out to me. Haha... It was calling loudly from the top of a tree. I could not see it from ground level as it was really high up, but my camera spotted it.

Other findings included the super cute Zebra Doves, the Great Egret, Pink-Necked pigeon, and White-Throat Kingfisher.

Before getting into the wetland, I saw a beautiful sight. The beautiful morning sunlight casting over the Little Egrets were amazingly pleasing. There was a beautiful scene which I saw between the Estuarine Crocodile and the Little Egrets. Was waiting patiently to see what would happen between the crocodile and the Egrets. It seemed like they were getting curious of the still log laying in front of them. Great catch!

I quickly walked on heading into the wetlands to catch a glimpse of the migratory birds. I quickened my steps over the bridge and saw many photographers shooting a flock of egrets at the bank of the Buloh Besar river. Some of them were waiting for the egrets to open up their wings to fly while some were shooting those which were hovering above them. I moved on quickly because my aim was to shoot the migratory birds. 

At last!! It was a WOW sight! I was so excited when I saw them. There were lots and lots of them. It felt like a miniature birdpark. I found a comfortable spot to catch my view of the birds. I awas so delighted and beaming with light when I saw those birds I always wanted to see. Practically I was over the moon jumping with joy. There were Whimbrels, Greenshanks, Redshanks, Sandpipers and of course Egrets, Storks and Herons. The scene mesmerized me and made me lost inside them. I just stood there watching them dazingly.  

After being knocked out by the flock of migratory birds, I made my way round the wetland for my own adventure findings. Every walk brought me interesting discoveries, enabling myself to learn the uniqueness of Mother Nature. Nature had taught me many things, it made me slow down my pace in life and observed carefully what I could see around me before I moved on. Nature had also taught me to be more patient.

The pictures were beautiful weren't they? I love those pictures which my camera brought me. Sungei Buloh would always be a place full of surprises. Rest assured that I would be back again. 

Nearest Station: Kranji (hop on Bus 925 at the station bus stop)