Brisk air spells brisk business for laundromats, hotpot eateries

There were light showers across the island throughout the day, with temperatures dropping to as low as 21.7 deg C.
There were light showers across the island throughout the day, with temperatures dropping to as low as 21.7 deg C.ST PHOTOS: TIMOTHY DAVID, MARK CHEONG
There were light showers across the island throughout the day, with temperatures dropping to as low as 21.7 deg C.
There were light showers across the island throughout the day, with temperatures dropping to as low as 21.7 deg C.ST PHOTOS: TIMOTHY DAVID, MARK CHEONG

Singapore's weather continued to be cool yesterday, with some businesses warming up to the cold spell.

There were light showers across the island throughout the day, with temperatures dropping to as low as 21.7 deg C.

Singapore's recent cool tem-peratures have been caused by a monsoon surge over the South China Sea, which continued to bring in cool air from the northern hemisphere's winter chill yesterday.

Monsoon surges are triggered by a sudden increase in wind speed which causes cold air to surge.

It has been a good run for some coin-operated laundromats, which reported brisk business as people found themselves unable to air-dry their clothes because of the rainy weather.

Mr Mike Ng, who runs the Happy Bubbles Laundromat in Tampines, said "significantly more" people had been using the clothes dryers at his business in recent days.

  • Coping with the cold, damp and indoor blues

  • Some daily activities have been affected by the wet and cold spell. Here are some tips on what to do:

    TACKLE LAUNDRY WOES

    •Those who need to dry their clothes can invest in an electric clothes-drying rack, which comes with a sterilising ultraviolet lamp and a fan. These do not come cheap, however, with some costing more than $600. •Clothes-drying racks without the frills are cheaper, with some going for $20 or less. •Try the dryers at coin-operated laundromats, now found in many neighbourhoods, for about $1 per five minutes of use.

    NEED TO EXERCISE

    •Avid joggers who miss running outdoors need not despair. Jogging in place for about 30 minutes can burn approximately 183 calories. •Those used to exercising at outdoor fitness corners can opt for callisthenic exercises.

    Burpees do not require much space and can burn as much as 240 calories in half an hour. •Empty water bottles filled with sand can also be used as weights. A one-litre bottle when filled with sand can stand in for a 2kg dumb-bell.

    INDOOR FUN

    •Parents who cannot take their children to the playground or park have a wealth of indoor options. These include building a fort out of blankets, doing finger painting and organising an indoor treasure hunt.

    Zhaki Abdullah

"I've been here since morning attending to customers and organising a queueing system for the dryers," the 62-year-old told The Sunday Times.

"Normally we see about six to eight people a day using the dryers, but these past few days, there have been about 15 to 20 people."

All the dryers were in use when The Sunday Times visited yesterday evening, and Mr Ng had to top up the coin dispenser three times over the course of the day.

MORE CUSTOMERS

I've been here since morning attending to customers and organising a queueing system for the dryers. Normally we see about six to eight people a day using the dryers, but these past few days, there have been about 15 to 20 people.

MR MIKE NG, who runs the Happy Bubbles Laundromat in Tampines.

While some swimming lessons were cancelled because of the weather, one school has been able to keep its customers coming as both its indoor and outdoor pools are heated.

Swish! Swim School in Loewen Road said it has not seen a drop in attendance despite the constant rain.

However, the school's swimming coach, Mr Muhammad Abdul Halim, 33, said he advises parents to wrap their children in towels and give them warm drinks once they step out of the pool.

"Our pools are heated, yes, but it's still cold," he said.

Meanwhile, there have also been some unexpected consequences of the cold weather.

Chinese-language evening daily Lianhe Wanbao reported yesterday that some residents had experienced tiles in their houses popping out over the past two days, with some attributing it to the sustained colder weather.

For some, the lower-than-usual temperatures make it a perfect time for hotpot, whether at home or at the mall.

Staff at the Tampines branch of hotpot chain Jpot said they have seen the number of customers go up by about 20 per cent to 30 per cent over the past few days.

Undergraduate Tan Jo Ee, 21, said she saw yesterday's cold weather as an opportunity to enjoy a homemade Korean hotpot dinner with her family.

"Hotpot seemed the most appropriate and comforting thing in such weather," she said.

•Additional reporting by Zaihan Mohamed Yusof

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on January 14, 2018, with the headline 'Brisk air spells brisk business for laundromats, hotpot eateries'. Print Edition | Subscribe