It is a strange sensation all of a sudden to notice a building stripped down of its front hawker stalls or see its walled torn down to be renewed or maybe completely brought down. I had not been walking in Jalan Kamuning for one month at least and last friday I turned to see that the buildings at the end of the road had lost their lush vegetation. It seemed as entering the room of an old woman or man and by accident see them naked.
I realised that in the area the renovation work supposed to bring there the new financial centre of Kuala Lumpur had advanced dramatically: it had advanced to the point of showing what before was left to mystery behind the vines and the leaves. A little like our dreams sprawling on the bed run back into our mind when the blankets are lifted and the day enters, the memories lost in the forgotten buildings must have run away to their owners and the buildings stood there helpless and empty.
Here and there in Kuala Lumpur, an old colonial villa or an art deco building show up unexpected. Some of them are renewed and many have already gone. So I took a camera and went walking in the last section of Jalan Kamuning to remember what was there before. The street still looks like a quiet countryside place somehow unnoticed in the centre. It is probably not going to stay very long like that. The old prison has already gone, barely two weeks after I took photographs the moorish towers had been torn down. Very soon there will not be any place to get shade in the centre of Kuala Lumpur. Yet still now orioles and flycatchers glide in the air suspended among vines and ficus.
Ten years ago , during my first visit in Kuala Lumpur, I remember an old colonial villa in a very green garden peering out of vines and ficus in the middle of Jalan Tun Razak. It seemed such a beautiful mansions and seemed to recreate around itselft all the green fields the owner must have possessed at some point. It was so inspiring and bewitching that a blue feathered kingfisher used to sit on a branch enjoying calmly the sunsets and seemingly unaware that the fields had gone; yet at the time still the other side of Jalan Tun Razak was still covered in lush vegetation and the urban sprawling was not serious yet. I wish i had watched more at those villas. Now I cannot even relocate it exactly. Maybe it was were the “delicious” restaurant is now. Who knows. But if the kingfisher is reading this , he can come to my garden, there are plenty of branches for him.