Singapore Orchid Gardens | Singapore Affair With a US College Boy
When I was a child, I had accustomed myself to the smell of orchids. It was a fresh and earthy scent, tainted by the smell of salt coming from the seashore. Now, as I lie in bed, I can no longer smell orchids but a strong peppermint perfume – a silent reminder of a young blue-eyed boy I met in the summer of 1990. My father was the first orchid farmer to settle in Pulau Ubin.
So it was no surprise that I was named Jim Kie, after the famous Springwater orchid. He built a modest house out of wood and planted orchids on the eastern side of the land. All my three sisters who married before the age of 19, and left the family home. I never did. It was not that I did not have any suitors. Growing up, many in our kampong (village) knew me as the most beautiful of all four sisters. In fact, my father had almost succeeded in marrying me off twice