PENANG’S last remaining ‘squatting’ Teochew porridge stall ran by Tan Jin Hock, 80, may have ended its operations recently after serving its loyal customers for almost 80 years! However, all is not lost.
The memorable sight of this unnamed porridge stall has been carefully captured by four talented staff of a nearby hotel. The staff volunteered to take on the task although they had never done wall art before.
The painting of the mural, measuring 121cm in height and 126cm in length, began on Dec 7, 2019, and was completed on Jan 2 last year.
M Summit Group corporate communications manager Ng Su-Ann said they were lucky that the mural was completed before the implementation of the movement control order (MCO) in March last year.
“It took us some time because we had to juggle between our other tasks and only made time to paint when we were free.
“We often spotted the quaint squatting style of customers frequenting the Teochew porridge stall when we had our lunch at Bee Hong Coffee Shop which was located beside the porridge stall.
“I researched further and found that it was said to be Penang’s last squatting porridge stall. We were intrigued and decided that it should be our first mural project.
“We felt sad after reading about the closing down of the stall. However, we are honoured that the memory of this extinct legacy will now live on in our humble mural,” she said.
The mural is located beside the automated carpark of Menara M Summit; the tower which also houses the M Summit 191 Executive Hotel Suites.
Ng said that the Group had planned to name the lane – Magazine Memory Lane – to pay tribute to nearby nostalgic scenes of the past and present.
“Treasuring Penang’s local culture and heritage has always been close to M Summit Group’s heart.
“We are surrounded by such colourful traditions as our building is situated in the heart of George Town.
“We pursued a series of wall murals which could encapsulate Penang’s rich past and present to help the state government boost such wonderful heritage gems,” she said.
Ng added that the second mural, featuring the famous ‘Star Coffee’ stall in Noordin Street, was nearly completed except for some finishing touches.
“The third mural will be on trams which used to zip around in George Town in the 1880s,” she said.
Story by Christopher Tan