Friday, 23 January 2009

Of Durian Runtuh and Gong Xi Fa Cai!!


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Rest in Peace

I went to wish Chris and family Gong Xi Fa Cai but he wasnt there. His wife has lost her fight with the dreaded cancer. She died two days ago. Rest in peace, Mrs Chris and our sincere condolence to the family.

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The car had barely stopped when my nostrils began to pick up something familiar in the air and following the scent, I burst into Chris’s shop searching for the object of my desire. “Where is it?” I asked without looking at the shop owner reading his daily behind the counter. He pointed to a basket near the door and there it was sitting all majestic and inviting. “How much,” I asked, my eyes transfixed on the king of all fruits, while Chris kept on reading his daily. “£23 for the whole fruit,” he said nonchalantly as if it was the cheapest thing on offer in his shop that day.

That made me turn and square up to him. Chris hails from Ipoh and is our local oriental supermarket offering everything from kicap cap kipas to penyapu lidi . My mental calculation told me that that fruit cost around RM 150.00, and with that amount of money I could probably buy a lorryload back home. But I told myself this is not back home and I badly needed durian.

“Whaat??!” I tried my haggling tactics and Chris relented by offering to half the price if I were to share and eat it in the shop with him. My other half knew better than to interfere and stayed as far away as possible reading ingredients on packets of instant noodles.

So, that was that. I was to pay £12 and Chris would cut open the fruit for us. I certainly didn’t regret it. I had two portions and admitted defeat for my conscience was telling me that my son waiting at home would love some too. I told Chris to pack the rest up for me and like a good customer, I was going to pay up when Chris said: “Never mind laaa, I belanja you!!”

We’ve known Chris for a long time and although sometimes we’d buy our stuff elsewhere in Chinatown or Loong Foong on the way to Wembley or Wing Yip in Neasdon, it is to Chris that we go to if we’re desperate for noodles to warm our cold afternoons. It was with Chris too that I had my joget lambak at the national day celebrations in Brickendonbury last summer.

That episode with the durian left me wanting for more. So one day, coming back from Malaysia Hall, we stopped by at Oriental City in Queensway. Oriental City used to be in Colindale in north London, and we used to go there in summer to enjoy the satay and karoke in the summer sun, while taking in the delicious smell of the durian from the stall nearby. That was where Siti Nurhaliza sang before her Royal Albert Hall debut, and where the Alleycats delighted their fans who came from as far as Liverpool.

The owners, Ronald and his wife Phoebe, had recently relocated their supermarket in Queensway, much to our delight, for it is certainly nearer. So, at Oriental City I followed my nose again and that led me to Ronald, who hails from Singapore. There, the durian was ready peeled and you know what you’re getting. So, I chose one packet with 4 slices and that cost £6.64. But once again, I was determined to buy this as I had read online, how to cook pulut. That was to be our breakfast. Ronald told me it was good value for money and at the counter, he told me, “Just pay for the pulut, I belanja you the durian!” Now talk about durian runtuh! Twice in two days!

Chris’ and Ronald’s Oriental City have made life so much easier for us these days. I remember the first Oriental supermarket, Cheongleen in Tower Street, in Leceister Square. That must be one of the first few Oriental supermarkets in London. Even then, thirty years ago, you’d never get lemon grass or daun pandan or curry powder, or durian for that matter. We got our serai powder in Harrods. Not that I knew what to do with it in those days.

Most big towns in the UK have their Chinatowns and the biggest must certainly be in Manchester. There’s another big one in Liverpool too. I remember one winter taking a break from filming the Pak Cik sailors in Liverpool, we went to have lunch in one of the Chinese restaurants. It is not surprising that the Chinatown there, like the ones in Manchester and London, are populated by Chinese from Malaysia. After lunch, we went back to find the cameraman’s car broken into. And as we wandered around looking for the culprits, a middle aged Chinese woman told me in thick Scouse accent that the area was certainly not safe. I asked her where she came from and she simply said: Ipoh mali.

Anyway, coming back to Chris and Ronald in London, I am reminded of my childhood friends growing up in the sleepy town of Yan and also in Alor Setar. We grew up in a small town with Chinese and Indian neighbours, a close-knit community who didn’t care about race or colour of the skin. Just the other evening at Malaysia Hall, I found an old friend from Sultan Abdul Hamid College. A true Malaysian you’ll never find. Come snow, rain or shine, Richard Ooi is always in his batik. He proudly drives a Proton. While waiting for the husband we chatted about those good old days in Alor Setar and the big reunion recently that we both missed. Suffice to say, when I went to pay for my meal, I was told it had been settled.

I cannot end this Chinese New Year piece without mentioning a a certain special friend who had been truly kind to me. He was the one who introduced me to the world of fashion, taking me to London Fashion Weeks and sharing great moments in his life with me. He introduced me to names in the fashion world and celebrities such as Jermaine Jackson, Debra Messing and Natalie Imbruglia.

Once as we were going to an event where he was to receive an honorary doctorate, he told me to change into a more decent pair of HIS shoes, muttering something under his breathe “Haiya, you journalists, so cheapskate,” casting a glance at my worn out shoes. And suffice to say, that translated into – “Haiya, I belanja you that pair of shoes laaa!”

So, to all these wonderful and generous friends, who proved that it is possible for us to live together and be friends, I wish you a very Happy and Prosperous Chinese New Year. And to my online cyberfriends too (Ilene, Judy, Alice, Argus, Lilian, Argus, Pey, Yang May Ooi, Lydia Xeus and Kenny Mah, Danial Ma and Uncle Lee and to Masterwordsmith who sadly has had to leave blogosphere) who have accepted Kak Teh as Kak Teh or perhaps as Margaret Chan – GONG XI FA CAI!!!!



Some related items:
Memoirs of Margaret Chan
A Date With Messing
And Jackson Makes Five

58 comments:

GUiKP said...

Such colourful life and friends you have, Kak Teh.

I've been to SAHC twice now, and really enjoyed the exhilarating short drive along the Persiaran Tunku Abdul Rahman as we entered the compound, then passed the imposing Main Building overlooking the rugby field and the Alor Setar tower at a distant, and finally made our exit via the Persiaran Tun Dr Mahathir, with Stuart Library on the left and the Pavilion on the right. And the countless majestic raintrees flanking both the Persiaran, what a sight to behold.

On that trips, we saw many smart looking boys in blue t-shirts, with Days printed on their back. Very good first impression.

Will say something about Wing Yip right after this.

Salt N Turmeric said...

I remember that 1st story. Durian is like gold. Just like maggi mee is, at least for us in the US lah. And i so envy you Kak Teh since you ahve no problem getting kicap cap kipas udang. Here either kena get somebody to bring fr Msia or beli online yg tersgt lah mahalnya.

In anyway, Gong Xi Fa Chai to you and family as well. Jgn lupa to wear red bagi itu ong masuk. ;)

GUiKP said...

During our last stay in UK (1997-2001), we got our regular supplies of sotong, East Malaysia udang, etc from Wing Yip In Birmingham. The vast place does not look like a supermarket, more like an Oriental Garden Village. Another favourite haunt is the Birmingham BullRing fish market, where we bought fresh tuna (ikan tongkol/kayu/ayo) to make Kelantanese gulai nasi berlauk.

Things were so different during my A-Levels days (1980-1982). The main seafood was mackerel fish, which took me soooo long to finally acquire and accept the taste. And once in a fortnight we all took turn to travel all the way to Peterborough to buy in bulk halal meat and chicken. The shoppers in Sainsbury where we lived must have the impression that we are all vegan by looking at our trolleys ladened with rice, cereals, vegetables, tins of sardines but no beef and poultry.

D said...

oh wow, free durian in london!! heHe... dunno how we'd survive without the chinese shops here in the UK!!! And, i tell you Kak Teh, the Chinese folks are real generous people (especially during CNY season - with their ang paus *wink). Gong Xi Fa Chai to those celebrating...*sigh, kat Malaysia sure banyak oranges free nih!

Kak Teh said...

GUiKP, Well, I am thankful that they have accepted me as friend. Alhamdulillah.
SAHC is truly majestic and I still yearn to go back and walk that road leading to the building, with trees lining it. I remember the walk or the cycle, feeling quite proud to be among the few girl students in those days.

Kak Teh said...

Farina, I can safely say, we can get almost everything here. Syukur. Mak dengan bapak saja yang tak ada - and nenek of course. Yang lain semua ada kat Oriental City, hehe! Have agood time too!

GUiKP, again - yes, I know that Wing Yip in Birmingham. The one in London has been renovated and really huge. Where i was - in bayswater - makanan halal banyak. Alhamdulillah, Will be writing abt that soon.

Kak Teh said...

D, they are indeed generous. And indeed we are blessed. We can only offer friendship in return.

Oranges are plenty now, I bet and sweet ones too!

Zawi said...

Kak Teh,
A really nice piece and very apt for the occassion.
Experiences like these are very hard to come by anymore and I doubt the future generations can interact among the various races like we did in our time. All the more so when each race has their own vernacular school thus they are segregated so early in life.

Kak Teh said...

Zawi, sad but its true. How can the situation be remedied when everything is so politicised? We should be able to look beyond race and skin colour and religion. But I dont see that happening.

Naz said...

Kak Teh,
How I envy you :)
The nearest Asian shop to me is 3 hours away...huhu.
I remember the first time I went to a Vietnamese shop in Oslo many years ago. I found a pathetic pack of durian in the freezer. Nak terjojol biji mata I! Kalau kat Msia, I won't even look at it but due to nostalgia, I bought it. Bawa balik rumah, sniff puas puas and buang (too watery to eat).

Gong Xi Fa Chai!
ps:jangan lupa bakar mercun :D

Kak Elle said...

oh wow KT how lucky you are they belanja the durianssssssss...luck norn come in 3's try the next stop who knows 3 times lucky:)

Pi Bani said...

Agaknya depa tengok muka you macam muka orang kempunan durian kot... tu yang dapat durian free twice in a row.

You're right, when it's in season, for RM150 here you can probably get a lorryload. I once bought RM20 - penuh boot kereta. But people like me, makan dua tiga ulas cukup dah. So more of the durian either becomes kuah durian which I like... and the rest of it... tempoyak le... teman kan oghang Peghak...

mekyam said...

gong xi.. gongxi.. kt and fam all friends, chinese and otherwise, who lepak here! :D

kt, you tersangatlah murah rezeki. it must be your lovely face and aura. :D

the hub and i were in our chinatown this last monday [public holiday - martin luther king jr day] where our favorite oriental store is also owned by someone who is ipoh-mali, and we also beheld the majestic durians... not frozen but with the duris looking all gun-metal green fresh.

i didn't bother checking the price though because h said i would have to eat it all by myself (as he'd be away in münchen). no can consume whole durian by myself... dua ulas would be all i can handle.

i'm sure the price was much much less than in londres though. howat mahai sangat durian over there, kt? depa hantark pakai sampan ka? :D

ray said...

Kak Teh,

Sempena Tahun Baru Cina, kucing saya Pak Ma Ling ada lagu utk Kak Teh. (Kelihatan Pak Ma Ling sedang meminum secawan teh). Oleh kerana tahun ini adalah tahun Lembu (Year of the Ox), kami telah menjemput tetamu undangan, En. Meng Lem Boo utk menyanyi bersama.

Hao Le Ma? (Are U Ready).

Sing to the tune of Gong Xi Gong Xi.

"Lem-bu ba-ju me-rah
Da-tang pe-tik bunga
Un-tuk Kak Za-ha-rah
Yang jauh di-sana"

Gong Xi Gong Xi Gong Xi Ni
Sila letak ang pow sini


From ray and the chinese cats

Kak Teh said...

Naz, yes we are lucky. And now adays almost anything boleh beli di sini. Duit saja yang berkurangan. I am lucky that at least two people in this household tak begitu minat durian. kalau tidak...hmmm kena share enam orang!

Kak Elle, hahaha! Can you imagine me going to another shop and buat muka welfare. But once, I had a surprise visit from a friend - he lives in London - but knowing how much I love durian, he brought not one but three - in a big plastic bag!

Kak Teh said...

Pi Bani, bukan muka kemponan, muka welfare lah kut!!! When we were back home, we usually go out and buy durian. the mistake was we shd have brought someone with us - we have lost the art of haggling.

Mekyam, yes, that was a big fruit for £23 - I dont know whether he was just pulling my leg because in the end it was free. But certainly - four ulas £6 - £7 pun mahal juga. Once I bought five miserable looking mangosteens for £3!

Kak Teh said...

Untuk Kucing Ray dan kucing-kucing Cina,

Lembu baju merah,
pandai petik bunga,
nanti orang marah,
mengaum macam singa.

Kak Teh sangat suka,
bunga sangat wangi,
pandai Pak Malim berseloka,
sebab tulah disayangi!

Gongxi, GongxiFa Cai

GUiKP said...

Kak Teh, I pun tak adalah gila sangat pasal durian. Tapi buah/bunga naga (dragon fruit) I suka giler. Kat sini ada Restoran Bunga Naga di Wang Tepus, lebih kurang 15 minit dari our house. Lauk asam pedasnya pun bubuh bunga naga. Unik!

Kak Teh said...

GUiKP, dragon fruit! The first time the fruit was introduced to the london crowd, the locals were afraid to touch it because they thought there was coloring in the fruit. I loved it when I first tasted it, but now the novelty is gone. Ada yang tawar.

kay_leeda said...

Murah rezeki Kak Teh dapat makan dolian free lorr :)

Wooo...manyak mahal loh itu king of fruit di sana!!! I'm no fan of the fruit, but I do have to give in when the children ask to stop by the road side to makan durian. They all know that durian is a big NO NO in Mommy's car.

Gong Xi Fa Chai, Kak Teh. Pakai baju merah eh... :)

Kak Teh said...

Kay, you are like my SIL - kalau we all beli, kena makan kat luar rumah. I can imagine the smell in the car - kalau long distance driving tentu pening walaupun you peminat tegar durian.

mamasita said...

Gong Xi Durian to you KT!
Laah..knapalah you blur your gambar with the Mat Salleh.
And your anak2 semua kuat gelak and senyum macam mama dia!! hahaha

Pak Tuo said...

hmm... reminds me of my first durian tasting at Matahari Shop,Westbourne Grove.

It sure burn my pocket that day.

Kak Teh said...

Pak Tuo, yes, I remember matahari too. Now there are two additional oriental supermarkets in Bayswater - but of course mahal sikit laa. Kalau nak makan and teringin kena juga belanja.

Mamasita, That picture was blurred at a time when i was known as Mak Cik Blur. Those days memang i blurkan gambar - and now tak kuasa nak cari the original. The lady is an american - famous american actress - Debra Messing who I met at Jimmy Choo's shop. and the one in the other picture is Jermaine Jackson - who was introduced to me by Jimmy Choo as well. aaah nice to know the children have my smile.

Justiffa said...

KT - mahalnye durian!!! kat sini bole dapat sebakul kot.. neways untung kwn2 belanje ;)

Hope ur well KT *hugz*

Madam Tai Tai said...

Kak Teh, free durians and free Jimmy Choo's!! How lucky you are and how generous your friends are!!! BESTNYA..

Given a choice I'm not sure which one I'd rather have - free durian (my fav fruit yg tak dapat di Bangladesh ni) or free pair of Jimmy Choo's (which I crave for). And you have both of them!

Gong Xi Fa Cai to you and your extremely generous friends. The world will be indeed sweeter when we have these sort of friends around.

tireless mom said...

Dear Kak Teh

I can imagine how the mat sallehs look like squeezing their nostrils to avoid smelling the king of fruits.

You are lucky to get the durians free, in London some more. Kat sini pun takkan dapat unless it comes frm your own or relatives' orchard.

I have Sam the fishmonger who is like Chris and Ronald. He makes our marketing a bliss because he would prepare the fresh ikan kurau, ikan merah, cencaru, udang etc everytime we do our marketing. Tak payah nak tunggu. Priority treatment.

Kak Teh said...

MTT, aaaah, i think its that muka welfare of mine...must be that cos I cant think of anything else. But Alhamdulillah, I can only repay them with friendship.

TM - yaaaa, they certainly cant stand the smell! and they dont understand our obsession with durian. Like we dont understand their obsession with certain kinds of cheese.

Justiffa , memang mahal - and btw - I have just finished 40 mins on the WII FIT board. Give me a pat on the back, please.

Kama At-Tarawis said...

Kak Teh, untung sekarang durian pun boleh dapat in London. In the 70s mana ada.. I used to frequent one shop in Kilburn owned by a Penang Chinese - masa tu kami duduk kat West Hampstead - durian takdak, tapi lesung batu ada.. I bought one nak buat sambal belacan..hehehe

Kak Teh said...

Puteri, when I first arrived a friend was leaving for home and what better farewell persent to give than batu tumbuk sambal - which I still have until now. Its a real treasure that no blender can replace.

ruby ahmad said...

Hi K Teh,

Mak Datok mahal nya durian?? At 23 quid, we can get a whole car boot pf durians here..ha ha! Yeah! Of course you're not in Malaysia.

But with durian runtuh, not once but twice...well, that about describes your affable personality lah tu.

Oh the celebs! People pay to see them, & you hang out with them?? Another durian runtuh..LOL!

Gong Xi Fa Cai.

Kak Teh said...

Ruby, i think those days are over. I cant be bothered anymore - dah tua. hehe - masa I was introduced to Natalie Imbruglia, I tak ingat dia pun until Jimmy said she is in one of the Australian soaps. Tapi, mestilah ambik gambark jugak, kan?

DrSam said...

wow...you sure have a lady luck looking upon you Kak Teh. I guess we were a bit unlucky during our time. The only oriental fruit we could find was mangosteen in Sainsbury.

Durian can be a good winter warmer too.

You had your joget lambat at Brickendonbury? Somehow I missed all those occasions when I was there. By chance, do you know En. Salleh Subari?

Aida said...

Kak Teh,

Being half-kelantanese, my grandmother never let us go anywhere without lempuk durian.... imagine this, 5kgs of lempuk in my bag when i went to UK to study.... though the texture had changed but the taste was the same, me and housemates loved my granmother for the pure torture she put me through lugging those 5kgs hehehhe (on top of everything else!!!)

Lucky u to be able to even afford £12 for durian ..... we (me and a cousin) once went to the Harrod's FOodhall and found IT there, all wrapped up .... but just could not bring ourselves to buy it

BUt yeah Wing Yip Birm is where we went to get our popiah wraps and such.... teringat Chili Oil... cannot get one that taste the same like those in UK hehehehe

Kak Teh said...

Dr Sam, London sekarang dengan dulu banyak berbeza. We can get most things now.yes, we go to brickondenbury every year. that's the only chance to get together dengan ramai2 malaysians - carnival atmosphere. Salleh subari - was he in tourism?

Kak Teh said...

Aida, 5kg of lempuk - oh my God macam bawa gold nugget! amd sure you jimatkan every bit of it. Buat air minum!

I dont think Harrods would have durians now because the cost wld just be impossible. but next month permaisuri agong will be coming to launch the sale of kraftangan in harrods. so - there will be some malaysian products there. again - for us, balik beli kat pasar seni laaa.

DrSam said...

He is our London rep. and vice chairman of TARRC. Retiring soon. Not sure whether he was in tourism before. TARRC is actually my other playing ground other than my office at Sg. Buloh.

Kak Teh said...

Ahhh, yes, now I know where I heard that name. Ya, I think the other salleh was with TDC and left for france sometime ago. Yap - i know, i know.

Lyana Mauseth said...

kak teh,

mmg rezeki dtg bergolek2 lah mcm tu...free durian kat london, mana nak dapat kan...lucky u!

kat sini ada durian kat kedai asia tp i takut nak tanya harga haha..mesti lagi mahal dr emas...kalau rambutan dgn manggis ada jual kat supermarket biasa kat sini tp warna coklat, kering kontang, kalau kat msia, tupai dgn monyet pun x pndg, here depa jual, i tak tau sapa yg beli..mmg benda x blh makan dah...heran..mesti org2 kedai tu pun x tau apa2 pasal buah2 tu semua :D

Uncle Lee said...

Hello Kak Teh, ha ha, minta ma'af saya again da silap masuk wrong road....
Anyway, glad you saw it...Okay, I will make sure I will not repeat that again, ha ha...
Otherwise I buy you fish and chips at Nottinghill. Ha ha.
Best regards, Lee.

Daphne Ling said...

Hi Aunty Teh,

Sheesh, now I nak makan durian pun! Somehow tak sama lar. Same food, eaten outta Malaysia, is just not the same...

My mission is to now find nasi-lemak-bungkus. Found nasi-lemak, but no bungkus wan...

Happy CNY to you too, Aunty Chan! ;)

Kak Teh said...

Lee, hahaha ! I had a good laugh when I saw that comment - but never mind, at least I read it and I knew you meant it for me. Thank you and thank you for coming back to the right address. Next time sms me first and I can give you the direction!

Daphne, how can I forget your name in the list!!! I think it is because you have moved base...i will now put your name there.
Nasi lemak? London has the best nasi lemak and i can take you there the next time you are here.
Happy new year daphne dear!

Kak Teh said...

lyana, di sini pun di supermarket ada rambutan tapi nampak dah macam buruk. But I'd rather buy the ones at the oriental supermarket kalau teringin sangat laa, kalau tidak makan yang dalam tin pun cukup.

funnyaccent said...

Eh...eh KakTeh look what have you done, now I have walk up to Super88Market in -5 degree to get my durian :)

Kak Teh said...

anasalwa, hehe, nevermind, you always jog, so jog to the supermarket, jog back with the durian and I promise you it will keep you warm and put a smile on your face!

Ms B said...

Kak Teh,

I think for some of us, to get a taste of durian for that price, we'll just close one eye. LIke me, cant resist petai whenever they are served at the usual hangout.

I think the other day they had mandarin served as well!

WIll be travelling. The lil one is not happy of me being away. had to pujuk many times.

Kak Teh said...

Ms B, I'll close both eyes to buy durian..hehe! Happy travelling. So, lil one tinggal kat sapa?

mamasita said...

So sad very sorry to hear that.
His wife died of cancer apa? How old was she? How many chilren do they have ye?

Hope you get to meet up with him soon.Please send him our condolences.

Life for Beginners said...

That's really what we need more of in the world today, Kak Teh. Your story of how you and Chris shared the durian made me wonder why sometimes we have to travel far from our homelands to be nicer to each other. There is hope yet.

My condolences to your friend for his loss of his wife.

On a happier note, let me be one of many of your readers and friends to wish you Gong Xi Fa Cai! Hope you and your loved ones have an Oxpicious New Year ahead! :)

Kak Teh said...

Mamasita, I just know that they have a daughter graduated as a doctor and just got married. So , she did get to see those two occassions. I will thank you.


Kenny dear, I'd like to think that no matter where we are, the friendship exists. Like this blog, I dont want any boundaries - this blog is reflection of my life - I have friends from many backgrounds and culture and race and I feel all the richer for that.

Thank you Kenny - have a good day today.

maszuzu said...

kak teh, i remembered the few trips tht i made with a friend of mine to oriental city at colindale dulu..mak jauh betulll..kalau tak pasal my friend nie pregnant and mengidam food frm OC itself..aiyooo..tak kosa mas nak pegi..

Kak Teh said...

Mas, the present C tak besark - just twp shoplots - and certainly no foodcourt. I didnt quite fancy the food at the foodcourt before - just went there for the atmosphere. Especially in summer, there's a carnival like atmosphere. I agree with you, it was so far away.

Ida Hariati Hashim said...

Salam Kak Teh,

I believe the best durian is from Perak. Nasib baik masa kat overseas tak teringin nak makan durian, if not sure seksa hidup punya..

Buah manggis Kak Teh tak teringin ke? Sekarang ni musim tau..

Kak Teh said...

Ida, kak teh pernah beli 5 biji manggis for £3. tu teringin punya pasal. Orang kata, kalau nak buat ubat tu adalah manggis - tapi mahal macam bedil!

Sekarang tak lah teringin sangat atau melayan perasaan sangat. Tadi kak teh cakap dengan anak2 kak teh di Bangi - they were eating durian sebelum balik ke London.

MrsNordin said...

There should be no barrier when it comes to friendship ~ Malay ke, Chinese ke, Indians ke... we are all the same. But I suppose, things are now different from what it used to be because everything is highly politicised (as you said). And that's sad..

I used to frequent London's Chinatown dulu2 (zaman ada Chinese boyfriend), and I thought I did see durian in one of the supermarkets. But never bought one tho'. I suppose, these days, you can always get Asian food stuff easily. Lucky you!

Kak Teh said...

Mrs N, you are right. It is almost like home. We do have everything, though I must say the quality of ikan bilis leaves much to be desired. I prefer the ones from back home but now they are very strict about bringing in foodstuff.

ilene said...

Wow Kak Teh, you're truly blessed with such wonderful friends and some more famous people!

Gee, so costly the durians but it's expected. Sometime back our dailies here reported that Harrods was selling rambutans at (*oh dear forgotten*) some atrocious, obscene amount and to think back home here we have the choice of picking and throwing away the slightest black patch that we see on the surface eventhough the fruit is still edible! What about mangosteens over there? Must be just as pricey!

Thanks for your CNY wishes Kak Teh. It's truly a very lonely and quiet CNY I had. If not for kind uncles and aunts and cousins who kept me busy visiting them, I can't imagine how more lonely the atmosphere would be.

P/s: Don't eat so much durians nanti badan rasa 'heaty'. Take care Kak Teh!

Kak Teh said...

Ilene, mangosteens are expensive! and everytime I went home it is not in season. My children were back in malaysia and had lots of durian just before the flight back..a real mistake because one of their friends who ate too much, felt hot all the way back during the flight.