The Swiss Granite Fountain in the Singapore Botanic Gardens, sculptured by Ueli Fausch (2005), is a gift from the Swiss Community in Singapore. Both the ball (measuring 80 cm in diameter, weighing 700 kg) and the 3-tonne basal block on which it sits, are both made from granite from Switzerland.
The ball is constantly spinning, rolling, kept afloat by water pressure directed through the basal block. The role of the ball in perpetual motion is to represent people striving for excellence.
When the girls were toddlers, we would bring them to this sculpture. They would climb up the base and try to stop the ball with their tiny little hands. If you apply sufficient force in the appropriate places, you can change the direction of the spin.
Through the years, we would smile indulgently when we walked/ran past, to see little (and not so little) people trying to do the same. During lockdown, the water was turned off and the spinning ceased. It has since been turned on but the sculpture is little visited these days.
This past Monday, we were all set for a visit to the National Archives in their newly renovated building. Unfortunately, we didn’t realise we had to make a booking ahead of time and so were denied entry; an outing for another day.
My sister, brother, a couple of cousins (all of the above live in several parts of the United States) and I were chatting on Messenger about the Great Conjunction, and whether we could see anything from our various locations.
My sister and I were meant to meet in Japan this past June. My brother was meant to pop in to Singapore last month. We were meant to be in London now to spend Christmas with my Aunt & Uncle.
Zoom this Christmas will be the closest to seeing each other for a while.
We do not despair. We are grateful for technology. But we are looking to the day when we can meet in person again.
My US family are sporting photos of what they think might be heavenly bodies. Mine are meekly Christmas orbs hanging off trees on Orchard Road.