So as I was lying there on that queen-sized bed, sandwiched between two friends (one of whom I’d been close to since Form-freaking-One), full from her birthday dinner, hearing their rhythmic breathing, knowing I really have to fall asleep soon because the next day is going to be a busy one, and being excited at the thought of spending the next night with my closest friends in a rented suite, I was content enough to not want anything else other than …
… for experiences to be tangible, just so I could bottle these moments up and save them for when I would be too far away to enjoy such pleasures.
It feels weird to think, this is it. This is the sort of experience I’d been pining for when I was back in Grinnell, when I’d been so caught up with college and dealing with the freezing weather that I’d forgotten how it felt like to be in my hot and humid home, hanging out with friends who’d practically grown up with me.
I’ve had a blast since coming back so far. I still feel a bit pathetic la, almost all of my friends are interning somewhere (one person is working in an African country! How cool is that?), but I’m secretly glad I’m not working at all. Because then all those times that I’ve gone out with my sister, hung out with friends and gone on holiday with my family, those wouldn’t have taken place, kan?
Eeeeeeerrrrhh I just want to savor these moments, because I know that when I’m back in crazy-weather Grinnell, up at 3 a.m. working on a paper, missing meals and generally being SUPER anxious about not being able to finish my work in time, I’d be craving for a bit of comfort from home. It doesn’t help that there’s no place to get Milo, and the nearest place from where I can get my fix of Indomie/Maggi mee is 45 minutes away, plus they sell it at 3 times the Malaysian price somemore =(
Speaking of instant noodles, I have a story to share! One time, an American friend asked me over to her place (she stays in a language house with a fully-equipped kitchen) to have ramen. I was like, damn, American can cook ramen, pretty cool loh! So I went, and when I got into the kitchen I found that she was cooking….. instant noodles. I was a bit disappointed lah. Apparently in America, “ramen” is synonymous with “instant noodles”. I don’t even know how that came about. The ironic thing is, she wasn’t even cooking japanese instant noodles yeah.
Anyway while I waited for her to cook her noodles (on stove, which at least is more canggih than in microwave oven, I give her that much LOL), I figured I’d run back to my room and get a packet of my Indomie to share. And guess what? She said it’s the best instant noodles she’s ever tasted.
Another time, I was watching Grey’s Anatomy on my laptop when halfway through I noticed this really strong, but really familiar smell in the room. It smelled really good, really… Malaysian. I was like, Oh my gosh I KNOW this smell! I turned to my roommate, who was there, on her bed, eating noodles.
Then it hit me, I was like, “Is that Indomie???” She said yes, she said she bought it near her home in San Fransisco, and she said it was the best instant noodles evarrrrr. I was going, “YEAH yeah yeahhh!! It is the best!”
Oh my gosh I was so happy lah that time! LOL I was just really sensitive to anything that reminded me of home, which happens when nothing really reminds you of home.
Now I understand why when I was little that time, eating Maggi or Indomie gave me as much joy as a French cuisine connoisseur would get from eating, I dunno, top quality foie gras in truffle sauce, or whatever weird expensive food like that.
‘Cause Indomie makes the best instant noodles in the entire world. And you know that claim is valid when someone who lives at the opposite side of the earth, and eats very different foods from you, agrees whole-heartedly.
By the way!
Let me teach you a way of cooking Indomie/Maggi that I discovered while in college! I think most people usually either cook in a pot on the stove, or put it in a bowl and chuck it in the microwave oven, right? But unless you cook Maggi very VERY often (don’t la, later hair fall off how) but unless you cook it really often, getting the PERFECT texture of noodles, perfectly al dante noodles is pretty much a fluke loh. How to know exactly when to take off from the stove woh? Always leave it to chance loh.
But I have found the perfect way!
All you do is put the noodles in a bowl, pour in hot water, and cover the bowl to keep the steam/heat in. Leave for around 5 minutes (I think shorter maybe, I don’t remember la), and when you drain off the water you get super perfect noodles! Springy, nicely cooked, not at all limp (“limp”? Dunno).
The best thing is you can always take off the cover and check on it to see if it’s reached the perfect “doneness”, which you couldn’t really do properly when it’s on the stove, in boiling, bubbly water.
I only discovered this because the microwave oven in my room is damn cacat, and I couldn’t be bothered to go to the kitchen.
But still. Damn wonderful, kan?
* * * * *
Aaaaanyway, speaking of the western world (when I was talking about Americans loving Indomie, before I gave you my Indomie wonder-cooking-instructions that I know will not be very appreciated wan la anyway)…
So speaking of Americans…
You guys need to watch this video!
It is so damn funny! An angmoh who lives in Singapore and speaks Singlish.
Without a doubt one of the most incongruous things I have ever seen so far. Hearing really Ah-pek English (a.k.a Singlish/Manglish) coming out of a Caucasian’s mouth, damn weird loh. Then 90 minutes into the video the dude starts speaking in American English and I’m like, WAH suddenly the guy seems so much more attractive liao!
LOL kidding kidding.
Manglish still the best lah seriously. It just feels like Home.
It’s probably like, the only English “dialect” (or whatever it’s supposed to be called lah) in the world that you can speak and no one, NO ONE, can judge your English proficiency. ‘Cause when it comes to Manglish, the more broken and tak “flow” your sentences, the more advanced/canggih your Manglish is.
But then sometimes it really does confuse you when you’re speaking with a non-Malaysian. Like in college, before I got my own cell phone, if my friends wanted to find me they had to either call my room phone and hope I was in my room, or make a guess and go to where they think I would most likely be.
One time, I was at the Grill when I was told that
another friend was in my room “just now”, waiting for me (my room is never locked). So I was like, okay whatever.
I didn’t return to my room until much much later, and it turned out that I was supposed to actually go back to my room to meet her waaaay earlier, because for non-Malaysians, “just now” does NOT mean “moments ago” like it does in Manglish, rather it actually is, quite literally, just NOW.
As in right now.
As in, she is in your room right now, go meet with her right now! I thought they meant she was there earlier in the day.
Okay my Malaysian ladies and gentlemen, now you know that the meaning that we have assigned to the phrase “just now”, remains exactly that – a meaning we sendiri suka-suka assign to it. The rest of the world does not agree with us!
* * * * *
Wah today like, share a lot of cultural misunderstandings.
Okay lah signing off bye!