The plan for today was to join the throng of 40,000 strong crowds at the Singapore Air Show 2008. However, it was only after I made my way to the SAM machine that the message "Sold Out" flashed before my eyes. I couldn't believe it. Do they mean the walking spaces at the new and more spacious Changi site were sold out?
All equipped for a day out in the hot sun with sunglasses, sun block lotion, water bottle and a cap, I was left standing beside the SAM machine with the occasional poke of the finger on the touchscreen and ever the slightest hope that I might be able to trick the system into issuing me a ticket after the nth attempt.
Determined not to spend a disappointing Sunday, I hopped into a taxi and made my way to the Zoo.
With the hype in the papers about the recent passing on of Ah Meng and the search for the next animal Superstar for the Singapore Zoological Gardens, I decided to visit the nominees before casting my vote.
I'm really proud of the Singapore Zoo. Aside from the spacious enclosures and the creation of the animal's natural habitat, the visitors are promised a glimpse of the animals at all of their respective enclosures. Please do not take this for granted because I have been to many zoos in different countries and many a time, I was left standing in front of an enclosure, trying to locate the animal and figuring out where on earth could it be hiding in the not-so-large space.
Another great achievement by the Singapore Zoo is the close proximity it has brought the visitors to the animals. There are some world-first free ranging areas where the lovable Orang Utans and numerous primates can be seen swinging above the heads of visitors, feeding time where children can hand feed the baby wallabies as well as the various animal shows where the visitors get to interact with some performing animals. And it never fails to warm my heart when I see how close the animals are to their trainers. With some effort on our part, it is truly possible for man and animals to co-exist peacfully.
And many may not know that there's an area allocated within the zoo for the visitors to learn more about the different species of Orchids as well as some tropical plantations.
And of course, I duly paid my respect to the late Ah Meng.