brushes and papers

my learning journey


September 2012

Does anyone go to library anymore? (圖書館舊書銷售)

Last Friday, I was invited by a friend to a closed-door, member-only, one day library used books sale at the expo. This was the first time I went to this kind of book sale. The large hall was filled with all sort of books but only few people were there. It felt strange and excited at the same time. Strange because there were no usual crowd there and excited as all those books are ours to pick at our leisure time. No one would try to snatch the books from your hands or tried to squeeze you out of where you were standing.

It is amazing to know there are so many public libraries all over the island, 21 branches to be exact and one big national library in central town. My family and I love books. We love to read all sorts of books. We usually buy books but they are very costly here. It usually costs around USD 15 or more for the thin few pages painting books that I love to buy. Sometime, instead of buying, we would just head to a library and borrow from there.

Borrowing and owning the books are different. There are books that I would love to own; to read them at our leisure time, to take them out and feel them in our hands or to just flip those pages for no reason. I also like the freshness of new books, they smell good too.

Anyway, back to the expo hall entrance, we were given a basket and were advised by a library staff that those magazines on the display carts are free to take as many as we want. By having this sale, the libraries are recycling and extending the life of those books and magazines. At the end of the day, this kind of book sale is hunting delight for all book lovers and the best of all, each book costs only one SGD or 75 cents US. Who can resist such bargain 🙂 After long hours of scurrying around and choosing, with a big smile on our faces tiredly we all went home. All of us can’t wait to start reading those many books that we hauled home.

These are the books that I bought. They are all painting books.
The total is 28 books.

Happy Weekend!

Mid Autumn Festival (中秋節)

It’s Mid Autumn festival again. The Chinese celebrate the festival on the 15th day of eighth lunar month and this year falls on the 30th of September. The celebration became popular during the early Tang Dynasty. There was a Chinese legend about it, but I won’t dwell on it here. In Singapore, it is difficult to miss this festival. When we open newspapers in the morning, we can see advertisements after advertisements celebrating the festive. The promotion of activities at the shopping malls and the promises of goody bag gifts for the attendance. When you received credit card bills, enclosed in the envelope was a 5 stars hotel mooncakes at 15 to 20 percent off early bird promotion. All these are hard to resist and ignore.

On the mid-autumn night, the moon is at its fullest. It is also a family get together time. We will see kids carrying bright lanterns under this bright moonlight. Different places have different way of celebrating the festival. Those who have back yard in their houses will gather together to drink tea and eat mooncakes, chit chatting under the moon light. For me it is just another excuse for celebration. It is a nice change of pace from our usual and routine daily life.

The festive brings togetherness in the communities; it colors the neighborhoods night with all those big and small bright red lanterns hanging. Neighbours, friends and family, who are usually too busy with their life, will pause and reconnect on this occasion. We are repeating to our kids the tale of the mid-autumn which has been told from one generation to the next. This too becomes a tradition that change and adapt as time goes on.

Happy Mid Autumn !

Moon cakes tin.
There are four moon cakes in the box.
One of the moon cakes. It is lotus paste with an egg yolk flavour.
We usually have it with Chinese tea.




中秋快樂 !

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