Sunday, November 19, 2006

I Can't Wait To Go Home

I have been running around for the past few days, partially in preparation to go back to Penang (please read: buying presents) I had the past 3 days off, will work one day tomorrow evening and then have three days off (including Thanksgiving day). After that, all hell will break loose and I will be working like a fiend to maximize my shifts before flying back to Penang. Yes, I'll be working right until the day before I leave. Then I am going to collapse into a comatose state until I reach Singapore. I will be determined not to eat on the flight, okay, will tell the truth, determined not to eat a lot on the flight so that when I land in Penang soil, my family can cart me to the nearest hawker center and shove food down my gullet to revive me.

Last year, on my Singapore to Penang trip, I declined the 'generic airplane crap' that MAS serves and caught incredulous looks from the passengers sitting next to me. They probably thought that I was mad because I didn't even take the food that I had already paid for. I thought that they were mad because they were wasting stomach space on crappy airplane food when delicious Penang food was only minutes away. I will be saving my stomach for your culinary splendor, dear Penang Island.

For those of you who are not acquainted with this charming little island, it's my beloved hometown, located off the north-western coast of Peninsula Malaysia. See Penang on Wiki. Penang is a food paradise and has spawned millions of food snobs, including myself. When I was living in Penang, I would rather skip the meal than eat bad tasting or sub-standard food. Living or rather, eating there was a real luxury. Living in the Midwest has brought me down a peg or two. But I would still rather not eat 'Penang' food at all than to cheat my tastebuds with non-authentic fare. Anyone can identify with this quirk? I'd rather wait a year and then hentam the real thing.

The typical greeting when meeting friends and strangers alike is, "Have you eaten yet?" or in Hokkien (the most commonly spoken chinese dialect), "Chiak pa liao boay?" If you answer in the affirmative, it would inevitable lead to an interrogation of what, where and when you ate. Many discussions that have started out amiably have ended in arguments about where the best places to eat are. Say no and your friends/hosts/strangers would either tell you the best places to eat or simply drag you off for a meal.

Every Penangite thinks that they know where to find the best food. Ironically enough, nobody can come to a consensus. The bf and I often disagree on where to eat the best Char Koay Teow on the island. My favorite stall is at Song River while the bf likes the one in New Lane. This time, for the sake of my blog, I will attempt to find the best places to eat authentic Penang staples and complile a 'best of' list (which will probably be challenged by most Penangites) I don't care, get your own blog if you disagree with MY list. I will work hard, sacrifice my figure, grow fat and appear gluttonous for the sake of getting to the truth. And this is going to be my excuse when people ask me why:
  • I am so greedy and eat so much
  • I eat more than one dish per meal (e.g. roti canai and nasi lemak for breakfast)
  • I am getting so chubby or fat (this is from the truly rude)
  • I am eating like there is no tomorrow. People, I am storing up gastronomic memories to sustain me for a year. By now, I cannot remember what laksa tastes like.
  • I spend so much money on food
  • I take pictures of every dish before eating it
  • I prevent people from eating before I take pictures of the food
  • I am always talking about food, asking during lunch, "What's for dinner?"

30 more days to takeoff!!!!


Anonymous said...

*Note*.....the Blogger is always hungry...regardless!!

Tine said...

Ah, welcome to the world of blogging! Just read your blog now that you've told us about it. Man, your lovely photos of all the FOOD do NOT do me any good when I'm on a diet! :P

Anyhoos, can't wait till you get back, we'll go and pig out (yeah, damn the diet by then, hehe!)

Shen-Hoei said...

You better give me a call!

TrueBluePenangite said...

Tin: Since I am coming back home, I should probably diet as well. Every year, people keep commenting on my weight that it's so annoying. Never mind, I will have an excuse...I'm a food blogger. BTW when is the reunion?

Shen: I will call you, I promise.

Tine said...

Reunion's on Dec 23. Not much of response so far, despite being held at Bagan. Not surprised ;)

misery said...

we can have our own lil reunion and boycott the boring one.

i was telling tine we'll definitely catch up one nite. I only have a few days in Penang but will definitely fit in my bestest friends in the world ;)

TrueBluePenangite said...

I have no problems having our own little party. Why spend time with people that stress you out?