poor mei ling! the once a simple hawker centre which pride itself for selling good honest to goodness hawker foods is no longer that innocent.
after the upgrading of this airy spacious h c, many of the pioneer hawkers decided to call it quit. they took their meagre monetary compensation and vacated their stalls. hence, that was the end of their honest to goodness inexpensive food.
baey yam keng had promised "better business" in a makeover mei ling. there was a lift and a pair of escalators. that is good. and there is the terribly increase in rental and super hike in conservancy fee. now that's terribly bad!!
all food prices go up! that's worst! and the final stab into mei ling's heart: there are lesser patronage. die! what baey bragged about before the upgrading is going the reversal.
now our poor makeover mei ling is more deserted than before. more stalls are closed or some even give up. they refrain from doing business as there is no business enough to tide over the day's expenses and overhead. so opening for business mean incurring more losses.
now what? mei ling is lamenting everyday: "where are my old customers? where are the more new customers i was promised??"
mei ling hc is waiting for more stallholders to close. lunch time. the old soyabean drink stall uncle who is one of the pioneer hawkers laments. he even stops selling his superduper black sesame paste or his tao suan. why? not enough customers. his desserts were once a daily sold out at a honest to goodness 80c a bowl. but now all his good stuffs end up in the longkang! so he stops selling but laments.
some of the stalls that u may see now would be bankrupt when u come again say in a couple of months time. new stalls would take over...new stalls close and newer stalls could replace.
what's happening to our poor mei ling? a better fengshui was promised but it seems to be more cursed now than before.
the answer lies in the rental.
baey has done a good job to upgrade mei ling. what he has fatally left out is he didn't fight to maintain the rentals, the conservancy charges and some advertisement to promote a prettier mei ling.
in fact, i would dare say, baey is slowing killing mei ling. poor mei ling! when would she ever shines through?