Those of us who crossed from Butterworth to Penang by ferry would remember seeing these barges or wooden tongkang . Their size and their numbers qualify their prerequisite as transporters between the large ships at anchor in the channel and the wharfs nearby. Modern containers and deep water wharfs have put them aside and you can hardly see even one either at Penang or any other ports in the country. Dwellers in the houses on stilts too have change their means of livelihood and it is not surprising to learn that their old homes have now become a source of attraction thronged by visitors daily. The obsolete may yet offer quaintness or nostalgia.
It is a spanking clean city now. You would hardly dare to flick your cigarette ashes anywhere less you are caught on camera or physically. This 1962 picture caught the sight of North Bridge Road in Singapore. I guess even if you move to all corners of Singapore now you will never find such norms where people do business in the most casual way with the bustling chaotic but friendly nature ever meet again.
I am not arguing that you will still find a Malay home like this in some corners of Malaysia. But look closely. Notice the upright planks on the wall and windows. No this house is not under seal. Just that the owner or the carpenters have somehow decided to construct as it is. Or maybe it is an attempt to dry the planks completely before they are used in the best possible way. As it was all shut up, I had no opportunity to talk to the owner and get some explanation. Still it sits in a most beautiful part of the kampong.( More to follow as the mood dictates )