Pengkalan Rama. Melaka.

In 1871, Pengkalan Rama is among the top 10 areas cultivating tapioca. Historical record of Melaka’s tapioca produce registered some 8,000 tons or some 130,000 pikul. 1 pikul (the unit weight used by Malaccan in the past) is equal to 100 kati (another unit weight used by Malaccan in the past), or about 133 lbs or 60.5 kgs. It was amazing that the value of tapioca produce alone was MYR543,764.10 at today rate of 1 Great Britain Pound  = 4.94 Malaysian Ringgit, for just only 141 years ago.

At present (as at Sunday 27 May 2012), you and your loved ones might have been boating together at least once or a few times already on the Melaka river. You might have boarded near the river mouth or near the Spices Garden. Either ways, your boat never has crossed under the Hang Jebat Bridge, for now. The Hang Jebat Bridge connects Pengkalan Rama Pantai to Kampung Morten through Jalan Tun Mutahir.

Before the Jebat Bridge render commuters to cross over the river, the service was assumed by an old Bailey Bridge. The Bailey Bridge was built by the army. Ibrahim, a friend, is among the army team. 2 years ago, he briefed me how the Bailey Bridge was built. Much older and before the Bailey Bridge was available, there was a simple but strong wood bridge.

I still remember the wood bridge very well and people was using it in the darkness behind the brightly lighted Chinese Opera Show that was housed in a total wood structure covered with atap leaves for its roof and its wall. Separated by a single-lane road, the Taoist temple sat far away into the woods at the other side of the road. Behind the temple, a narrow but very long Peranakan house contrasted the heritage site uniquely. I am lucky to have walked around with the house owner’s son in the Peranakan house once which toward its left was the Long Chan Brothers’ drinks maker. Mr. Lim Kit Siang had given a speech at the 3rd DAP (Democratic Action Party) General Election Public Rally at this place on Sunday 13 April 1969 at 9 p.m.  Read more ?

In 1678, there were 20 dwellings within Pengkalan Rama living in houses made of wood and atap leaves. When, your boat cruised near Pengkalan Rama Pantai, please visualize the location of those 20 dwellings which is nearly 1.6093 kilometer up-river from the fortress. Soon, everyone can cruise through this aging Pengkalan Rama Pantai to AEON Bandaraya Melaka and Sentral Melaka. The moments of each cruises would remind us the memoirs of the Farmers and the Tapioca 1871 and the memoirs of Lim Kit Siang 1969.

Beside the farmers, tapioca and Lim Kit Siang, the Chinese Lions also roared at Malay wedding in Pengkalan Rama Pantai. Annually, if you prefer to plan your vacations around the Pesta Sungai Melaka, you have celebrities to make your stay merrier. Eye of Malaysia is taking shape at the Pengkalan Rama Pantai vicinity too. This inland Eye is going to be different from the previous coastal Eye.

Mohd Ali Rustam is leading a working team to present another nostalgic new length of the Melaka River for a better tomorrow. Melaka Maju Negeriku Sayang. Negeri Bandar Teknologi Hijau.

Rejoice the Memoirs of a Another Nostalgic  new bank of the River.

Animation: Daniel
Photography: Daniel
Videography: Daniel
Writer: Daniel
Daniel is a former Malacca High School pupil

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