[Throwback] I grew up in a provision shop (:

While doing some research, I found my old blog from wayback then and stumbled across a post I wrote about my dad’s shop (:

So decided to repost it here. Heee.

Hen Chong i-Econ.

Friday, July 4, 2008
Yups, that used to be the name of my dad’s shop. Well, before that, it was “Hen Chong Econ Mini-mart” and WAY before that, it was just a simple provision shop in a kampung.

The shop is no longer around anymore. Well, technically it’s still ours till 7th July. But the shop is not open anymore and the evil occupiers (that’s how I like to think of them) have already started their renovation.

Anyways, my childhood is very much tied to the shop.

dad and me(:

dad and me(:
(See the bottles of sweet in front? I used to pretend to talk to my dad and then “steal” the sweets. Heh.)

Mum and me next to the star of my favorite instant noodle(:

Mum and me next to the star of my favorite instant noodle(:

Do you know that every shop has a second floor? There’s a stairs at the back that leads to a flat upstairs. SO! I lived above the shop for 4 years. Since I was a baby actually.
in the kitchen(:

in the kitchen(:

As the flat above the shop is pretty big and the grandparents are always there, the cousins like to come over to visit.
Grandpa and a really ugly me.

Grandpa and a really ugly me.

Two of the cousins and my sister. (Cousin holding me taught me how to walk! or so i'm told)

Two of the cousins and my sister.
(Cousin holding me taught me how to walk! or so i’m told)

And as the parental unit are always busy, they tend to put the sister unit and I in baskets and put us next to them while they stack goods/work.

And the neighbourhood knows us as the basket girls-.- (Look at that really ancient ice-cream fridge!)

And the neighbourhood knows us as the basket girls-.-
(Look at that really ancient ice-cream fridge!)

I have a very huge group of friends when I was a kid. All kids from the shops surrounding my dad’s! We will run around in the neighbourhood, playing block catching, police and thief, badminton, catching ants, hopscotch and etc.

This is about 1/3 of my group of friends. (My 1st best friend was 11 days younger than me! Not in picture.)

This is about 1/3 of my group of friends.
(My 1st best friend was 11 days younger than me! Not in picture.)

Then when my brother came along, we got a flat 8 floors above. So, for the next 8 years, I lived in the shop above the flat part-time (stay there in the afternoon and go home at night). As I move into the terrible teenage years, I only visit the shop daily after school/work/going out for the next 8 years.

When I am tired or had a bad day, I will just sit in the shop and my dad will try to cheer me up by talking politics. Or I’ll just do some solid people-watching there. It’s really nice(:

And sometime, when I come home late, it’s always nice to walk past my dad’s shop. Somehow, it’s comforting?

Of course, the flat above the shop is also the place where my friends and I spent a considerable amount of time doing our IP Project in Secondary One. I would like to post some pictures of my group mates sitting (very un-glamly) painting cardboard boxes. But I doubt I will make it out alive if I did.

I took this a few weeks before they started packing –


Yups. 21 years. So many (much?) of my memories are (is?) linked to the shop. It’s kind of sad to let it go. I almost cried on Monday when I sat in the shop and realised it was the last time I’ll be doing that.

And what I will miss the most is that I won’t be able to see my grams everyday anymore.

Grams and me(:

Grams and me(:

I’m rather worried about her. Without the shop, she has nowhere to go. Which means she will be spending her days at home alone. Sigh. I really should get the key to her house from my dad so I can visit her after work and school.

Taking a last look at the shop –
The stairs leading to the shop upstairs. No more boxes of goods by the side and shoes underneath.

The stairs leading to the shop upstairs.
No more boxes of goods by the side and shoes underneath.

The door separating the shop and the back. Ripped of all the numbers and drawings (from our childhood), it looks old.

The door separating the shop and the back.
Ripped of all the numbers and drawings (from our childhood), it looks old.

The shelves emptied of their goods.

The shelves emptied of their goods.

So yeah. I’ll miss the shop:(

Where do I go now when I am sad? *sigh*

(insert picture of shop closed).

P/S: The shop was supposed to be called “Heng Chong” but my dad mis-spelt the name during registration-.- So it became Hen Chong. Yes, hen as in the one that lays eggs.

Adding on in 2013:
I miss the shop but that’s the harsh reality of life. With hypermarkets, it is hard for small provision to stay competitive. 
It still make me smile that dad’s old customers still recognise him, the mum, the grams and the siblings (:
Sometimes, when they spot my grams out buying lunch for that *ahem* uncle, they will help to keep an eye on her. This old kampung spirit is hard to come by these days.
With that said, I realised how old my parents are now 😦 Mum, Dad. I know it’s silly of my to give up my job in Maybank. Sometimes, I do realised it too. I am afterall still very yellow-blooded. Please just let me be selfish for once. Let me put myself first for now. I promise after this, I will earn enough so the both of you can retire. PROMISE!
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