Food, Family and Friends

So, it’s been a while since I last blogged.  Blame it on the tropical weather.  Blame it on the food ( imagine the melting favors of the world over in one food court).  Blame it on family and friends.  Precisely, the deadly combination of the 3 F’s–food, family and friends.  And you get precisely that when you travel 12,000 miles to your place of birth for your yearly reunion of the 3Fs.

So for the past month, I’ve been hibernating in the warm juicy weather of Singapore.  A tiny island, surrounded by water (goes without saying) and immersed in 100 percent humility.  I love the sauna like weather.  Try it–it does wonder for your skin.  I didn’t have to worry much about moisturing my skin.

I didn’t have to worry about food either.  You can reach any eating places within minutes, sometimes seconds, when all you have to do is take the elevator to the ground floor of your apartment.  There on the very ground floor, are teeming stalls hawking mouth-watering food.  Chicken rice, spicy chicken noodles, Indian Roti Prata, fried fritters, fish balls, chicken feet, pig intestines–they congregate to tintillize your taste buds.  So what do you do?  You eat like there’s no tomorrow.  You eat like you’ve landed in the king’s court and any food you wish is your joy to partake.  On one sitting, you can have different types of food, –Rojak (Asian salad with a shrimpy peanut sauce), chicken rice, fish ball soup, fresh squeezed juice.  And that ‘s minus the dessert.  The array is staggering–that’s why you’ll find me deliberately for umm…..a long time while the line behind me snaked around the food court.

So much for food.  Anytime, all the time.  You’ll find Singaporeans eating any hour of the day.  I often wonder why they’re not any bigger.  Blame it on the heat, I guess?

And family, of course.  You’re home–where you belong and grew up.  No need for polite exchanges, no need for pretences–they know me all too well, so I can dispense with all the formalities and just hang. Hang we did, into the wee hours of the morning, just chilling and chatting.  From the soccer fever (the Euro Cup was on) to the slump in America’s housing market to the nosy neighbor next door to “hey, you look fat in that”–random musing is the word.  So laughter floats out of the windows, and quickly dissipates in the warm still air of the night.  No one will complain of the noise, as your apartment is one of the tens in the block and there are blocks and blocks of apartment in one satellite town.  I revel in the insignificance of this macro-picture.

The month passes really quickly when you have all these friends you’ve to meet.  High tea with elementary school friends, barbecue at a former colleague’s house, shopping with a church friend.  Food and fellowship–life can be a beach.

Now that I’m home and reeling from the lack of the 3 Fs, a hangover of gastro-familial  proportions, I may just have to rely on the sweetness of memories to go on.  Until next year!

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