[About this blog] Inspired by local soccer player Mike Lim during my rookie reporter days at Singapore Polytechnic, I set up this blog in August 2002. I feel that blogging is a novel platform to document interesting facets of my life and my thoughts on certain issues. [Email blogger] ephraim@singnet.com.sg

Monday, February 13, 2006

My role at the Chingay@Hougang is to take care of a group of grassroots leaders. I was in-charge of the crowd control of the arrival and departure for the VVIPs - namely George Yeo, Dr Ong Seh Hong, Cynthia Phua, Mayor Zainul, Yeo Guat Kwang and Eric Low...

It was an uphill task (literally cause they had to make their way up a little humpy ground). It was great to have two CISCO officers by my side to clear the crowd.

Reached the event site around 5pm and then started snapping away - my adviser wanted me to take photos of the publicity banners for the event as well as the backdrop with his huge photo and Allan Wu, 958's Carine Ang and Maia Lee.

Half an hour later, residents started spilling into the site. Some even made themselves comfortable by sitting down a la picnic style at a slope opposite the stage. By 7pm, the whole place was more crowded that a mosh pit of a MTV award ceremony. Except for the red carpet which was heavily guraded by the leaders.

At around 8.15pm, the first bus arrived. Out came several reporters and they were led by me to the interview area - Minister was going to be interviewd by Channel NewsAsia.

Edmund Chen, who was with his sister, was also present at the welcome area with the lion dance troupe. Meanwhile, Maia Lee, Allan Wu and Carine Ang were entertaining the crowd. 15 minutes and a split second later, Minister and the rest of the advisers from the Aljunied GRC and Hougang SMC, make their way through the crowd on the red carpet.

And as Minister and Eric Low reveal the scrolls on stage, pyrotechnics get activated and they send smoke everywhere. Then comes the crunch - the exit of the VVIP contingent. The other grassroots leaders then make way, while I direct the media and VVIPs to the interview corner.

When the interviews are done, I follow them to the waiting bus and make sure that all have boarded safely. It is a good thing that it went pretty smoothly except for the exit part - anyway, I shall ask Minister how he found the way the crowd control was done when I see him the week after next. Let's hope he gives an honest reply so that I can improve.

After the VVIPs board the bus, floats blaze down Hougang Ave 5.

And happy and delighted residents grab the opportunity to get up close and personal.


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