Tuesday, May 31, 2005

29th May: Rainy day

On my way back from church today, the Singapore skies turned nebulously ominous within a time span enough perhaps to consume one ching teng, and gave way to a torrential downpour so heavy I started thinking if it was ever mentioned in Revelations that Singapore was to be destroyed by flood or similar means. But then I remembered the covenant of the rainbow, and thought that scenario impossible.

If you were taking snapshots of me at 1 minute intervals, you would see me in the bus -

dull-eyed; awake, but nonchalant; quite awake; very much awake and staring in amazement; jumping about the bus wishing I had a video camera; panicking; deep in concentration (initiating a traveling salesman problem of least cost path back to house);

I have never seen such a sudden and unrelenting rain storm (maybe I have, but let’s not dwell on this exaggeration) – water overflooded the drains (I’m talking about those 1m deep drains by the sides of pedestrian paths running parallel to roads, not those itsy bitsy small drains easily clogged by two or three condemned umbrellas), and the delineation of road and drain became obscenely blurred.

Sooner than later, we were in a precarious situation – the bus was effectively a ship cruising on land, sending waves reaching up to the height of the window I was peering out from. Do you ever notice the trailing v-shaped waves that follow the path taken by a ship? The bus driver must have felt irresolute on continuing his intended route, for I am quite sure he does not possess a boat licence, or a license to drive a bus as a boat. Either way, it’s rather illegal to use an automobile in an unintended manner, and I am absolutely sure a bus is not meant for the open sea on the roads of Singapore.

Reaching Upper Bukit Timah, I was half-expecting the sight of baii-s and thambi-s balancing pots and belongings on their heads in the flooded pedestrian paths, a sight familiar in the Punjab floodplains (Hmm.. I’m being racist here...), while cats and dogs were paddling their ways to safety 450242km away, somewhere else on the continental plate.

By the end of the rain, I am of the opinion that Singapore would have enough water to tide over the next month or so without utilising any NEWater. Thank goodness for that.

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