In brief...

I'm a Nature-lover, aspiring conservationist, and wannabe traveller in search of outdoor adventure.
My interests vary from conservation to education to heritage to Nature (biodiversity & wildlife) to outdoor activities to life in general.
They occupy most of my waking moment.
Do read my blogs, follow me on Twitter (@jocelynesze) and friend me on Facebook (subject to my discretion). Visit my Nature blog, Nature Rambles, at http://natureramble.wordpress.com.

UPDATE 2 Apr 2017 - This site is no longer maintained, please visit jocelynesze.wordpress.com if you're interested in more recent writing.

Monday, March 23, 2015

The end of a chapter of Singapore's history.

There isn't anymore I can say that hasn't already been said about the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew, founding father of modern Singapore and our first Prime Minister. I'm in fact a bit late for the obituaries, cos I just got back from Scotland a few hours ago, where I was travelling the past week, but this post, if nothing else, is more for me and my blog archives.

I was walking along the cobblestone streets of Edinburgh with the friends I was hiking with, heading towards a pub when we heard that LKY had passed away (3.18am Singapore time, but we found out about 9+pm here). We were all primed for the news, having heard a few false alarms a couple of days ago while we were still on the West Highland Way (and having very patchy connection with the rest of the world. I meant to blog on WHW but obviously this trumps that). So we took a while to check and verify before finally conceding that this time it was the truth.

I must say I didn't quite know what to feel. I spent most of my time in the pub reading the obituaries by the news agencies that were already on it, feeling a little detached from the rest of my friends. We drank to him of course, that his soul may find peace and eternal rest. And for the rest of the night/today,  I just watched my social media fill up with orbituaries, dedications, quotes and photos. There really isn't much more I can say about him that hasn't already been said, and I can't say I really knew that much about him anyway. I've not read any of his biographies, though I fully intend to.

I'm just incredibly glad a good 22 years of my life overlapped with his, that I've seen quite a bit of him on TV and media and that I can see how his influence has shaped so many aspects of my life while growing up. I wonder if the generation of toddlers today and of future generations to come will only ever know of him as the Founding Father of modern Singapore, with as much feeling and emotion as I regard Sang Nila Utama, or Sir Stamford Raffles (who is the founder of modern Singapore? but not our founding father?).  All that LKY has done for Singapore is undeniable, and his dedication to public service is super admirable, and while like many other people my age, I'm not all too pleased about some of the policies and stance he took, I'm very grateful for what he and his generation had created for us. Education, garden city, clean water, and a largely successful and recognised country, nation and state. He is the last of the Old Guard to depart this ephemeral earth we inhabit, our social studies and history textbooks will be re-written and life in Singapore will carry on as it did, changing and never quite being the same again.

I only wish I could be back in Singapore to pay my last respects, join in the National Mourning and properly reflect on all he and his batch had done for us. Being in Cambridge though, there is still some element of connection as I wonder how he might have been like when he was here. In any case, may eternal rest be granted to LKY and perpetual light shine upon him and that his family will be comforted in their grief. Rest In Peace Lee Kuan Yew.

Taken from Remembering Lee Kuan Yew Facebook page

家 - 陈洁仪
Home - Kit Chan

1998年新加坡国庆庆典主题曲
1998 Singapore National Day Theme Song
作曲:李迪文
编曲:Iskandar Ismail

每一次我感到徬徨 不自禁就会回头望
Whenever I am feeling low, I look around me and I know
我知道心中有个地方 一定会有一盏灯
There's a place that will stay within me, wherever I may choose to go,
照亮每一颗黑暗的心房 指引未来方向
I will always recall the city, know every street and shore
沿着生命河流向前航 就能登陆理想
Sail down the river which brings us life, winding through my Singapore

我的家 收藏 我的欢喜悲伤
This is Home, truly, Where I know I must be
只要点燃希望 梦就会自由飞翔
Where my dreams wait for me, Where that river always flows
我的家 给我 一双坚定翅膀
This is home, surely, As my senses tell me
我的梦 不论在何方 一生的爱 唯有家
This is where I won't be alone, For this is where I know it's home

再也不会感到徬徨 不会再失意回头望
When there are troubles to go through, We'll find a way to start anew
我要用心中一点烛光 燃放千万户辉煌
There is comfort in the knowledge, That home's about its people too
要让繁华的城市更灿烂 世界和平共享
So we'll build our dreams together, Just like we've done before
全凭生命河流来导航 一起登陆理想
Just like the river which brings us life, There'll always be Singapore

我的家 收藏 我的欢喜悲伤
This is Home, truly, Where I know I must be
只要点燃希望 梦就会自由飞翔
Where my dreams wait for me, Where that river always flows
我的家 给我 一双坚定翅膀
This is home, surely, As my senses tell me
我的梦 不论在何方 一生的爱 唯有家
This is where I won't be alone, For this is where I know it's home
 (世世代代 温暖的家)

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