Better if bettered

[080] ... [General]

At one point of time you are likely to look back at the state of changed times in view of something similar encountered before. Even a decade shows up much difference. Such a thought came when visiting a big market after years. It used to be the main hub long ago, and still is in a way, though numerous shopping malls have taken away a large section from the stench and overflowing crowd. Though technically it referred to one large building, the whole area that spreads may be three kilometers around counts towards the name, adding to the commercial buzz through the day starting from the wee hours to late night. I wonder how the deserted place looks in between.

A theatre on the corner which we mainly visited the precincts for was gone, ditto for another much older nearby that must have been very long ago since the buildings along the stretch looked already aged, making it hard to figure where it really stood. A new building in place of the original that gave the place its name seemed lacking in character like the old, merely offering huge floor area, seemingly clad in signboards each crying for attention. Population explosion no doubt had made the to and fro moving crowd denser, vehicles all over, parked or moving. Musty smell from the wholesale yards of fruits, vegetables and flowers implied you better wear a mask whether or not pandemic in the air. Old alleys with older shops seemed to go on as usual since they existed, offering the same goods to the same brand of customers from the later generations, least affected by the online trend. Clothes, books, petty items, handkerchiefs displayed on the inner side of downward facing open umbrellas, pottery, kitchen utensils, light furniture, food carts and don't remember what else seemed overflowing from the sidewalks. A long flyover cut across serving as a conduit between distant places, passing through than give access, with continuous traffic even underneath.

There was no purpose in my visit. Just happened to be quite nearby on some other work and ventured into the maze for old times sake. In fact such places are like permanent weekly fairs minus the giant wheel and other playful rides that once thrived, and just occured that if redeveloped and maintained for purely the pedestrian movement with vehicles moved away, could well be an inviting place for all cross-section. But I am sure it will never happen. Political decisions, commerce that thrives on every square inch wouldn't dare losing out to sensible movement space around, that in reality would be a booster to take it further upward and benefit from...

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