Friday, February 22, 2013

Morning visit to the Healing Garden vs GBB

Found this at the Healing Gardens at our Botanic Gardens this morning. It looks much better on site. The S3 cannot capture the glory of the moment seeing this little snail glowing in the sun.

Unlike the GBB, I hope this 152 year old garden never charge a fee to enter. We were quite disappointed when they bumped up the entrance fees at the Orchid Gardens from $1 to $5 when they built the Cool House. Now we only go during the school holidays when they give free admission to students and accompanying adults. I hope they will eventually do the same for the two conservatories at the GBB. After all aren't they all managed by NParks? Don't even think about it were it run by the Wildlife Reserves.

We were among the first to visit the GBB when it first opened in the middle of last year. We balked at the entrance fees to the two domes and it took me more than half a year to decide to plonk down $68 x 4 for annual memberships. I am glad we took our time to decide but if wifey didn't keep urging me to commit I wouldn't have gone ahead. I would be waiting for freebies like the Orchid Enclosure.

Why am I writing about GBB when I was visiting the Healing Gardens? Because I passed the GBB on the way to the Botanic Gardens and was deciding between the two. At the end of the day, the grandmother of all our gardens still wins. I think gardens are like universities. Age is important and unbeatable as long as it had been well kept. I agree with someone who commented on my previous day post that the GBB is not worth the money. It is not inclusive, it is too superficial and techie. I can't imagine how young kids who visit GBB regularly would form rooting memories of their growing up years here. You can do that with the granny Botanic Gardens. And the reason is simple. The two conservatories do no belong to our ecology. They belonged to the world for a price on our scarce land. Unless they run it like the Orchid Enclosure, the pay wall will stop the poorest 20% among us who must contend with just looking at pictures of what is inside. Well they might as well look at pics of the best in other parts of the world on the Internet.

I have another more promising view of the GBB which I might blog about later. Perhaps when I have thought through more deeply how our relationship with the Super Trees might evolve. I must bear in mind how the San Francisco locals hated the Golden Gate Bridge and the Transamerica building when they were first erected. I worry that we loved the Super Trees too much. It could very well just be puppy love. A love affair that skipped infatuation is superior and more enduring. But we don't know ourselves well enough to build an equivalent Golden Gate. Before our identity could coalesce, we might already be massively reshaped into something else. The GBB tells me we are losing Singapore to the world. I need several more blog posts...

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