Burping My Thanks
Thankful to the Creator for the availability of so much decent food, the ability to enjoy it, and friends to share the bounty with.
Remember your Creator
in the days of your youth,
before the days of trouble come
and the years approach when you will say,
“I find no pleasure in them”—
2 before the sun and the light
and the moon and the stars grow dark,
and the clouds return after the rain;
3 when the keepers of the house tremble,
and the strong men stoop,
when the grinders cease because they are few,
and those looking through the windows grow dim;
4 when the doors to the street are closed
and the sound of grinding fades;
when people rise up at the sound of birds,
but all their songs grow faint;
5 when people are afraid of heights
and of dangers in the streets;
when the almond tree blossoms
and the grasshopper drags itself along
and desire no longer is stirred.
Then people go to their eternal home
and mourners go about the streets.
6 Remember him—before the silver cord is severed,
and the golden bowl is broken;
before the pitcher is shattered at the spring,
and the wheel broken at the well,
7 and the dust returns to the ground it came from,
and the spirit returns to God who gave it. (Ecclesiastes 12:1-7)
And the remembrance required is this:
Fear God and keep his commandments,
for this is the duty of all mankind.
For God will bring every deed into judgment,
including every hidden thing,
whether it is good or evil. (Ecclesiastes 12:13-14)
Late brunch at Food For Thought at 8Q with its upside down flowerpots, glass bottle lights, and quote from Ecclesiastes:”That every man should eat and drink and enough the good of all his labour, it is the gift of God” (Ecclesiastes 3:33). The Full Works breakfast (“Scrambled Eggs, Bacon, Garlic Mushrooms, Chunky Chicken Sausage, Hash Brown, Toasted Brioche with Thyme Tomato Salad”) plus a good portion of the crispy curry-spiced chicken was almost hearty enough for some people’s hangovers (though the hair-of-the-dog blood marys had to be found elsewhere). Good thing they seated us at the far corner because the continual laughter would have drowned out neighbouring conversations. (This was despite a rude waiter who kept snatching the menu from our hands, snapping “I need this!” – we just asked his colleague for another and had a chuckle at his expense.) The pound cake layers of the old fashioned red velvet cake suggested it had been recently defrosted (having the experience of too many youth camps). Anyone peddling the caramelised peanut butter chocolate trifle outside Elvis’ digs would have made a small fortune.
Dim sum lunch at Crystal Jade Kitchen (HDB Hub, Toa Payoh) with ex-colleagues. Loads to catch-up on, insider jokes interspersed with forthright no-holds-barred discussions (with full knowledge, after having worked together for so long, that no one would be unduly offended), exciting plans for the future.
After cycling, blading, kite-flying, and generally getting sticky in the sun and salty hot sea-breeze, a satisfyingly greasy late lunch at East Coast Lagoon food Centre, washed down with ice-cold sugar cane juice with a squeeze of lemon. The duck, chicken wings, satay and wanton noodles (barbeque pork noodles) were good, but we didn’t mind the rest since we were so very famished.
Graze at No. 38 Martin Road (facebook). A comparison of photos from a previous visit gave objective proof that we were not remiss in bemoaning a drop in standards (a common complaint amongst diners in Singapore, therefore always to be taken with a pinch of salt unless proven otherwise). There was no sign of Chef Chris Donnellan in the kitchen which might explain the far-too-seared scallops (the one at the far end was probably so embarrassed that it was trying to cover itself with the garnishing). The pan-seared barramundi was slightly over-cooked though the shitake provided just the right level of umami. The stewed filling of the apple tarte tartin was hot enough but provided no more satisfaction than McD’s apple pie. The sticky date pudding just wasn’t sticky and texture-wise seemed more microwaved than steamed.
Slightly peckish, we headed to the nearest McDonalds and convinced a nice counterstaff to make us a Coke float (paying the price for a Coke and an ice-cream).
Hill-Top Japanese Restaurant (2 Jurong Hill, Jurong Birdpark). Now this, boys and girls, is what real retro looks like. Gotta love the logo, laminate, carpeting, furniture, menu! The teppanyaki was dosed with a decent amount of MSG. Thoughtful service, orange bibs for inadvertent splatters at the teppanyaki counter.
Durian supper first at 717 Trading on Highland Road, then by Upper Serangoon Road. The durian season hadn’t quite kicked in yet so the fruits were fairly bland. And the cling-wrapped stuff at 717 Trading left a tingling sensation on the tongue, probably from the preservatives used? Figuring that none of these durians had the potency to cause nose bleeds, we risked cold beers at Joe’s Corner Cafe & Pub on Simon Road to end the night.