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Restored Coffee Shop chairs

You are from Singapore, Malaysia, or any other country, surely remember the old corner coffee shop in our neighborhood or small town. a coffee shop with the feel of the 50s, 60s and even the 70s. Recalling the coffee shop of the past, evokes the whole set of drawings, sounds, and scents.

We think of the present as a relic of the past, a place of lively community, a meeting place to chat with old friends while drinking coffee and cigarettes, freshly baked bread and also half-cooked eggs; a simple relaxing place with sounds coming from an old transistor radio or a picture from a black and white TV perched on a wooden shelf, a place to start gossip and talk politics and escape from a nagging wife.

In the old local comedy, a typical sight is a wife with folded arms, looking for her husband who hangs for too long in a coffee shop and dragging him home by ear. It was a male-dominated world. It's rare to find women wandering around in the coffee shop back then. It was part of the social conditions of the era. Women back then, generally still tied to the house. They have not yet entered the labor force on a mass scale as in the 80s and most of the food is still cooked at home. Only occasionally, they shyly walked into the coffee shop to buy the famous puff curry, steamed chicken rice, steamed buns or hainese noodles and quickly left a seductive look.

The most memorable icon of the old shop is of course the round coffee shop table with white marble tops and coffee shop chairs. Tables come in standard sizes of 2.5, 3 or 3.5 feet Sometimes, marbles are square or hexagon shaped. The legs of the old coffee table also vary. The most popular are those that have footwear - one part of the middle is supported by a smaller part around the perimeter. The older pre-war version, apparently, was a 4-legged one and sometimes with transverse bars. Some are made of teak wood and some are of chengal wood.

Shop tables are made locally or in Indonesia by famous craftsmen who once mastered the furniture making business in the region. But one thing is for sure, the coffee shop chair came from Poland, crooked wood as it is known in Europe. It is interesting to know such an early trade existed between us and a distant country like Poland. 

An unforgettable series of pictures of the past comes with a coffee shop apart from chairs and tables. There are coffee cups and cups- typical cream-colored cups and cups with greenery motifs on them, brass coffee makers and tall brass kettles, white cotton filters for coffee or tea bases, brightly colored enameled items and old flasks, Diamond brand electric clocks from China, alluring poster images of Shanghainese women on the walls, metal billboards,  old round cigarette can containers, aluminum ashtrays, small pepper and soy sauce sets, tall glass bread cabinets, aerated F&N and Kickapoo glass bottles, wooden drink crates, curved old marble or wooden top bar counters and more.

And one can never forget the smell of freshly ground coffee and toast, the rich sweet aroma of self-made, the sound of hot water constantly sizzling, the sound of half-cooked eggs breaking, the clanging of old glasses, the sound of clinking wood. crates of drinks piled up, the laughter and babbling of regular customers, cigarette smoke in the air and Cantonese music coming from old transistor radios. In malay villages, kopitiam even plays malay and hindi music!

Because of the strong influence and sentimentalism of the old coffee shop, they have not completely disappeared. Some authentic taverns still remain unaware of the changes or enjoy coexisting in a modern environment. New forms of coffee shops have emerged to adapt to the changing times in the form of Ya Kun Toast, Toast Box, White Old Town, Ah Mei Cafe, etc. 

Instead of being in old two-story buildings, which we now consider conservation houses, they occupied a place in shopping centers and arcades. The setting and shape may have changed, but the spirit, I think, is still lingering. Nostalgia of the past is revived in a modern setting.

for inquiry: juliningkali [@] gmail dot com

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