During the school holidays, the slots for the tour at the Police Heritage Centre were all taken up. This was probably the third holiday I had encountered the lack of vacancy. So, I had no choice but to register us for one on the first day of school. It was kind of a rush to get the kids to finish their homework and settle their tea break before heading down. But I figured it would be worth it.
Alas! I had a traumatising experience the moment we reached. I unwittingly stepped into a public toilet filled with cigarette smoke! Before I knew it, I took in a huge breath of the toxic substance I'm allergic to and immediately went into violent spasms. I retched, coughed and wheezed uncontrollably. An officer asked me to go to the bushes if I wanted to vomit but I couldn't explain to him that my body was trying to expel smoke, not undigested food. Many concerned individuals asked me if I needed to go to the hospital but I know that it would spell the end to the exciting trip my children were looking forward to for such a long time.
Praying desperately for the pain in my chest to subside and struggling valiantly to keep my breathing under control, I must have looked like a mad woman to everyone. I was raking though my hair and airing my t-shirt repeatedly to get rid of whatever nicotine residue on my person. It took me a while before I realised that the entire tour group was waiting for me. Embarrassed, I urged everyone to proceed while I bore with the burning sensation in my lungs. I really did not want the children to be disappointed.
The first part was a short presentation regarding keeping safe. Then, they had a chance to make badges and try on the police uniforms and props. The kids were thrilled.
Half an hour later, we exited the seminar room to go on a guided tour with a friendly police officer who gave us interesting knowledge nuggets about the history of our police force. I'm grateful that he was engaging and patient to the children, despite their constant mischief.
|Kampong Captain America? LOL|
At the end of the tour, we were given souvenirs of vehicle craftwork and stickers to remember the place by, much to the children's delight. Apart from the initial health scare brought about by the utter selfishness and inconsideration of a smoker, we had a wonderful time there. This officially marks the end of our June museum roundtable.