Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Reminder of my old army days

I was on my way to Kampong Glam for a photo shoot when I stopped by Alexandra Village for a bite.
Across the street, I noticed a building that immediately brought back memories of my old army days.
Are you old enough to remember this building?

This building, now abandoned and defunct, was the old SAF Reservist Association clubhouse, or commonly called SAFRA.

In my time (1975-1977), all soldiers were automatically members of SAFRA. You had no option and monthly dues were automatically deducted from your allowance. Servicemen were not paid a 'salary' but  were given an allowance. In my days, it was $90!

After your full-time service, all matters pertaining to the Reserves were dealt through SAFRA.
You applied for deferment or exit permits and any other matters with regards to your reserve status.
It was all manual as computerization had not arrived yet.
And of course, most important over all other matters, was your monthly entitlement of duty-free beer!

This clubhouse at Redhill was the pioneer servicemen's club with enrichment classes, games (tombolo, if you know what that is), sports and the very first rock climbing wall, which can still be seen in the photo above.

There is a signboard hanging outside the fence stating " New Hotel Development Soon"
Wonder if they will refurbish or tear down this old building?

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