A Night To Remember – Kampung Movie Night on 27 May 2016

By Geraldine Ng, Senior Counsellor, SCC

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After getting their faces painted, both brothers excitedly queued up for their balloon ‘swords’ as their parents looked on dotingly. Among those milling in the crowd were familiar faces with whom the family exchanged smiles and niceties. They sampled food at the potluck tables and strolled through the Goodwill Exchange Station, marveling at the throngs and the huge selection of toys, books and household appliances.

Preparations for the Kampung Movie Night had started hours before, with volunteers and staff setting up the various food stalls and the Goodwill Exchange Station. Despite the warm humid weather, the excitement was palpable as residents and their families and friends streamed in. Reminiscent of the kampung ‘gotong-royong’ spirit of a past era where communal mutual help was a way of life, the community at Lengkok Bahru was out in full force. From the young to the elderly, many hands were on deck to make the night a success. Even the shop owners got into the act as chairs were borrowed from the Kopitiams and lights were borrowed from the second hand shop.

The highlight of the night was the screening of “Home Run”, a local 2003 production that was specially selected to evoke the nostalgia of the kampung days. Sitting on ground sheets, stools and borrowed plastic chairs, the audience laughed and cried together with the characters in the movie. When the movie ended, as a final show of the “gotong-royong” spirit, the community helped in clearing the trash. Some were spotted going around with trash bags and picking up pieces of trash while others helped to dismantle the stalls.

Goodwill and mutual help had abounded at the Kampong Movie Night @ Lengkok Bahru. Those who were there would attest that the kampong spirit does still exist in modern Singapore.
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