Sometime in 1976 I was visiting a friend after school and we came upon a family moving house close to where he stays. There was rubbish strewn all over right in front of the house and people were busy moving furniture and what not out of the house. Things in the house which the shifting tenant did not want anymore were put aside, ready to be scrapped.
From where I was standing, I notice an object that looks like a toy made from metal amongst old tattered newspaper and it attracted my attention. I went nearer and saw it was not broken or anything, maybe only a little bit dirty with grime and dust.
Without hesitations I ask the lady standing nearby which I assume is the owner, whether I can have it and she acknowledge just by nodding her head and it was mine since then. That took place 30 years ago.
I still remember what she looks like, she was a fat woman of Thai ancestry with high cheek bones and bad teeth.
So, what is it really?
On close examination, the technology used to make it appears not to be recent, there are too many imperfections that current day technology, meaning the last 50 years or so, would have taken care of. The main figurine and rolling wheels, looks like it has been sand casted from brass. The iron rod put in place to hold the rolling wheels appears to be hammered in at both ends most probably when it was red hot. The inconsistent surface of the iron rod mushroomed ends is an obvious indication of the technique adopted. There are also indications that some repair work was done since being made as I can see small silvery patches of a different material on some parts of the figurine's body.
Is it an ancient toy that has seen happier times?
Was it used as a symbol for some religious ceremony in times gone by?
Without a doubt, I am sure it has many interesting stories to tell if only it can speak.