Khalil Gibran wrote "The things which the child loves remain in the domain of the heart until old age. The most beautiful thing in life is that our souls remain hovering over the places where we once enjoyed ourselves." This is so true. It doesn’t matter how long it’s been but there are sounds, smells and sights that never fail to whisk me off to moments in my childhood. The memory may be hazy , even elusive at times but the joy that fill those moments remain as vivid as day. The Hubs and I took a trip down memory lane when we stumbled across this charming little museum.
This two-storey shophouse is a treasure trove of toys and items from the 1970s and 1980s. The ground floor is basically a shopfront where you can still pick up forgotten gems like marbles and five stones at very reasonable prices, and gawk at the many antique pieces that are amazingly still working. The museum is located on the second floor. While it’s not very big, it beats many of the exhibits at the National Museum hands down. Simply because it invites interaction. Nothing is barricaded, glued or bolted down. No unfriendly signs that say "Do Not Touch". Instead, we were invited to knock ourselves out and have fun with the exhibits. Take this old-fashioned hairdresser set-up they had. We had fun sitting in the antique barber chair and remembering the times when our moms went to have their hair permed in the 80s.
Or this streetside mobile cinema. Ok, this was waaaay before our time but it’s still working with a short silent movie that runs with a flip of the switch.
Or this streetside drinks stall. We played pretend and took turns being the stall owner. The attention to detail was amazing – the curators bothered to have rose-coloured water in the plastic tub for visitors to scoop and I suppose anyone is free to take a sip or make an ice ball. The many bottles of F&N soft drinks also brought back great memories of recess in my primary school canteen. I swear I can still remember the taste of the bottled Magnolia barley and Fanta Grape. And I can still see the bees buzzing around the crates where we were supposed to return the empty bottles.
A lot of effort has gone into the sourcing of items and there’s a pretty good range to bring back those precious memories. The Hubs remembers playing cowboys vs indians or the Jerries vs GIs. And how he needed to bend the darn figurines just so they could stand upright.
The little school bookshop section brought back a flood of memories for me. I was this skinny, geeky kid who spent her recess hanging around the bookshop auntie. I think I spent most of my pocket money on pens, pencils, erasers, notebooks and pretty paper stationery instead of …. erm, food. Remember these erasers?
Admission to the Children Little Museum is only $2 and photography is allowed. The museum is small but it’s not bad for an afternoon’s excuse to behave like kids again. Highly recommended.