Similar to how we love to look at and comment on the photos from the past, the generation(s) to come will look at this photo and can only do just that. (The photo above was taken at the highest, pedestrian-friendly point of Benjamin Sheares bridge.)
When the MRT system in Singapore launched in 1987, it was a huge thing. I can still remember the black-and-white photographs of the operator laying down the last of the grey concrete track section. Fast forward to 2012, we don’t remember that opening ceremony anymore. The public’s perception of our track and train system is at an all-time low. We can look at those b&w photos from commemorative books from the past without fully understanding the event that took place 25 years ago. A photo is just a snapshot at that point in time. There is no way to ‘rewind’ or to ‘fast-forward’ to see what happened before or after that snapshot in time.
2012. Our city skyline has changed quite a bit. Singapore flyer was launched. Marina Bay Sands popped up on reclaimed land. The Marina Barrage started controlling the water level on the Marina Reservoir. The now-empty F1 pit building sits nearby, waiting to host big spenders. Gardens by the Bay will be opening in 2 months time. Bam bam bam, buildings are coming up so quickly, everything is evolving so quickly.
Still, in 50 years’ time, all these may mean nothing to the future generation(s), the Singaporean babies that have yet to enter this troubled world. They may have something else to worry about, something else to contend with. They can only look at this photo 50 years from now and, no matter how much they try, will not be able to fully understand the current generation’s journey through life in Singapore.