Wednesday, September 09, 2009
` 12:26 AM
I want to write this down so that i will remember this for a long time to come.
Hainanese or Henghwa?
I sat by the bedside, cooling down before i go for a shower. Mum was applying facial product. We chatted.
"The Vietnamese Coffee you brought back seems to be abit oily. Will it be high cholesterol?" She asked.
"No lah! Its because its straight from the coffee bean without processing that's why it feels oily but its ok one la. Vegetable oil!"
I took a deep breathe to slow down my breathing after the run.
"You don't use the glass filter, use the metal filter i brought back from vietnam to make the coffee, taste better"
Dad laid down on the bed preparing to sleep. It was 12am.
"Nowadays i cannot find any nice Kopi-O at the coffee shop, so i bought the filter to make my own coffee lor. Need 3 teaspoon of powder to 1 cup of coffee. Don't just put 2 lah mother!"
"Orh ok. Tomorrow I put 3 and try"
"Tomorrow make the vietnamese coffee for me. I haven't drink for a long time" My dad interrupted. "I want it with milk. Not Kopi-O"
I retorted "Milk where got nice? Kopi O is the best la!But now kopi O outside not nice one"
To my amazement, Dad sprang up from the bed like a boxer ready for a fight.
"You need to see which coffee shop you go!Those coffee shop name with Heng, Hui are from Henghwa or Hokkien. Their coffee so-so only. Those with Lai etc are Hainanese, they make the best coffee."
"How i know who is who? I go and ask them eh you henghwa or hainan meh?" I chuckled.
"Somemore now is S11, Kopitiam etc...everyone mixed mixed"
"You see what cup they use. Those who use glass cups are normally henghwa and i will never drink. Because when the coffee reach you it is not hot already. True coffee is drank from porcelain cups the hainanese way. They soaked the cup in hot water bath. When they serve, they will rinse it with hot water first. After that they serve the coffee. Even after you eat your food, the coffee is still hot. This is true coffee!"
"Then what about Yakun kaya toast coffee? They quite nice lei"
"Ya they are Hainanese. But now so many branch, depends on the worker. Last time at grandpa's furniture shop, there were 2 coffee shops. One at each corner of the street. The one at the lower end is from Hokkien, their coffee only so-so. The other one is Hainanese, their coffee is the best. When the boss roast the coffee bean in the afternoon, the whole street can smell the aroma. So strong and nice you just unknowingly walk into the shop and buy one. His kaya was golden brown in colour. Straight from the hot metal wok which is use to make it. Not too sweet, but very strong scent. The toast was just nice. Crust was crispy but not too hard. After the toast, when you drink the coffee, its still hot. Your grandma was so attracted to it that she ask the boss how to make the kaya and coffee, but got rejected time and time again."
"Got so power meh?"
"Of course la! The whole bukit timah area know him. Every afternoon just wait for the aroma to come dispersing into the shop. But he never passed on the the skills. His son, my classmate, was one of the 2 in my batch in secondary school that made it to University. Who want to sell kopi when you can earn more money outside? This is the true coffee. I really miss it. You can't find it anywhere now"
I stood up. Walked towards the bathroom. Not that i don't want to listen anymore but i supposed this is what you call in Economics the marginal utility rule. As you consume more, the marginal utility decreases. I did not what it to go into the negative region where i would think that he is becoming naggy. So i choose to savour the moment and let it end there.
I could see dad's eye and body language. He was flipping the blacket for no apparent reason and fidgeting. He was full of energy to carry on to tell me more.
I glanced at the clock.
12.20am. Time for him to rest before he passed the sleeping time and get insomnia again. There is another time for another story.
But for today, it has to end here.
I walked in to the bathroom, still hearing him talking to my mum who has already lied down on the bed dozing off.
"Wah his coffee really tok gong! Can never find already lah!"
The voice slowly faded away into the background as i let the water sprinkle on to my face.
I want to remember this moment for a long time to come. Because i don't know when i will ever lost them, or stopped hearing these stories. Even if it had to be repeated again, it would still be a joy to listen.
I smiled. Haven't done that for some time.
I think i have learnt to cherish alittle bit more and love alittle more.
Even if its just a little.
Thank you dad for that speech.
I am a FooChow by the way.
~Mr Jen has spoken.
Wednesday, September 02, 2009
` 2:17 AM
I really want to live that dream. really really want to.
And it has to start now.
~Mr Jen has spoken.