I am sure there’s a lot of wisdom and truth in the practise of doing everything with the right limbs. From pointing to eating and writing, we use our right hands. I remember the slap on the wrist, or a pinch on the thigh, albeit discreetly, each time as a child I handed over something using my left hand.
Walking out of the house and starting out on a journey, the same theory applies. We walk out with the right leg first and say some prayers to accompany us on our journey, even if it is to Mr Patel’s down the road.
Karim Raslan in conversation with Tash Aw
Last Thursday, we sauntered out into the warm summer night, after a fulfilling evening with Tash Aw at the launch of his book “Map of the Invisible World”. He was in conversation with the ever so charming Karim Raslan. Our appetite was much whetted up by the discussion and we were ready for a meal.
There was Sharon Bakar, back in London for a holiday and some work, her li'l sister Therese and another blogger friend Fiona. We chatted so much that we must have forgotten which leg got out of the Asia House building first.
Ruth Rollit, Sharon and Therese
But out we went anyway, walking along New Cavendish Street, off Oxford Street, long after office workers and late night shoppers had gone home. We wanted a bite and extra time to catch up. Sharon has become so Malaysian after more than 25 years there that food is also permanently on her mind, even after the scrumptious currypuffs and springrolls on offer during the book signing.
Anyway, like I said, off we went, left and right or was it right and left. The conversation then centred on where to eat. Therese said she saw a Malaysian restaurant along the street, down the road. I heard the mention of the name Selera and I was delighted as I knew of its impending opening. So, off we went, giggling like schoolgirls being allowed out in the evening.
When we got there, the lights in the restaurant were already dimmed. Sharon and Therese knocked and a gentleman, doing some work near the counter turned around and mouthed the message “Opening on Monday”. We were disheartened. But I decided to try my luck and knocked and waved like a crazy woman for Encik Hafiz, for that was the person near the counter, to notice me. And voila, he did and he broke into a smile and beckoned all of us in.
Selera, he said would be opened on Monday – (last Monday) but come in anyway. He ordered some fried noodles and fried chicken wings. Imagine, we were there for the soft launch! And talk about langkah kanan!
Fiona, Encik Hafiz and Sharon Bakar
We got talking about this and that, Sharon’s husband being Malaysian and Hafiz’s wife being British, meant that there was some common grounds to cover, apart from food . When the wings were all demolished and the remainder of the noodles packed to be taken away, Hafiz casually asked Sharon where she lives in Malaysia. She mentioned a place, Hafiz exclaimed a name and Sharon gave a scream and went red! Talk about six degrees of separation! Langkah kanan brought them to the one person both had known all their lives. Sharon’s husband was Hafiz’s friend since Primary Two and ex MCKK to boot!
So more giggles on the way out until we said goodbye to Sharon and Therese going back to Harrow. Fiona and I made treks to Bond Street station talking about this and that. She asked that one question, “Where do you live?” I mentioned a place and she said, “Well, I stayed there when I first arrived,” and went on to describe the place.
More screams and shouts of disbelief! Fiona actually stayed in a house whose garden is back to back with mine! Langkah kanan? Yes, I think we all sauntered out of Asia House that evening with our best right leg first.
Any langkah kanan moments to share with me?
SELERA RESTAURANT is now open
Address: 19 New Cavendish Street.
Nearest Tube station is Oxford Circus/Bond Street.