Few signs of recession in Singapore


Singapore  in 1982 was an eye opener for me on my first overseas trip.

My brother was based here with the New Zealand army and showed me not just the tourist attractions but some of the local sights too.

In those days New Zealand was highly regulated with lots of tariffs and import controls so the tour also included some retail therapy.

Nearly 30 years later, shopping isn’t such an attraction, but there were a lot of sales, the only sign we noticed that the recession has hit this country. 

Apart from that, the thing which struck us was how clean the streets are. High fines, imprisonment and even the lash are very steep punishments for minor crimes but the streets not only looked pristine, they felt very safe.

If you need a haircut in Singapore . . .


. . .  I can recommend one.

A much needed haircut was one of the items on my to-do list which didn’t get done before leaving home.

With a couple of hours to kill before meeting friends for dinner I went in search of a hair salon in Singapore. I had the luck to find one which gave me the best hair wash I’ve ever had.

It took more than 15 minutes, involved a lot of scalp massage and finished with a hot towel round the neck.


The stylist then took over and spent the best part of 45 minutes trimming, drying and trimming some more. It cost only $S50 which is less than I’ve paid for a haircut and wash which takes half the time at home.

If you have a spare hour in Singapore and your hair needs attention I can recommend Jessie at the Jiwon Hair Salon, 501 Orchard Road.

Reuse best way to preserve historic buildings


The ODT reports that the Otago Regional Council is seriously considering using the grand old Post Office building in Princess St for its new headquarters.

When the council was looking at options for a new HQ earlier the building was being developed as a hotel. That didn’t eventuate and the developer was bankrupted.

Reuse is the best way to conserve historic buildings and the longer the building is unoccupied the faster it will deteriorate. However, it is rarely inexpensive.

They’re eating our cheese here


The breafast buffet at the Regent Hotel in Singapore had a delicious array of food from just about every corner of the world, inclduing New Zealand.

There was kiwifruit which wasn’t unexpected and among the cheeses from Europe was a Whitesone aged Airdale.

Burdens win farm environment award


Lake Hawea farmers, Richard and Sarah Burden won the NZ Farm Environment Award Trust and MAF Scholarship at the Ballance Farm Environment Awards.

Richard and Sarah farm Glen Dene Station at Lake Hawea, they are also the relatively new owners of the Hawea camping ground.

You can read more about the awards and other winners here.

Aa for water


Oamaru’s water supply used to be so bad the freezing works at Pukeuri had to have its own supply.

The water the people of the town drank wasn’t good enough to wash export meat in.

Seven years ago it had an Ee grading but the Waitaki District Council has done an extensive upgrade to the supply and it’s jsut been rewarded with an Aa grade.

Potable water is essential but having systems which treat it doesn’t reduce the importance of measures to ensure waterways stay clean in the first place.

July 2 in history


On July 2:

1938 the electrified railway line between central Wellington and Johnsonville was officially opened.

1964: US President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act 1964 which outlawed racial segregation in public.

2002 Steve Fosset  became the first person to complete a solo round the wolrd flight in a balloon.

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