The holiday season is always magical in many ways – a time to take a little break from the year to share meals, conversations and laughters with people you love most. Looking back upon the year, the uncountable meals shared together made us closer and very much stronger. To celebrate the last few days of 2013. We went home. Hong Kong, in a way, was going home for both of us, more for Michael because he was from there. Less for me because I lived there once.
We didn’t dine at fancy restaurants or spent romantic candle twinkling evenings over wine. Instead our holiday drifted down memory lane. We took slow trams watching the city goes by. We dined at old-style Hong Kong cafés. He told me that I must make up my mind quick when we ordered or the servers will give me a crude scolding for being slow to order. I know, I know… don’t hurry me! I whispered. If only I can read Chinese as fast as him, I wouldn’t miss out on so many good local food when I live here! You see, I don’t patronize these local gems, not that me and my expat friends are snobbish but because we had issues with Chinese characters. I still can’t read them fast enough.
We walked up the narrow roads, visited his high school (He pointed out the principle office where he visited so often)and roamed his university where he said is the best time of his life. The days were spent strolling through the neighborhood he once grew up in, telling me his stories of favorite hang out joints after school and the pranks the boys played on other classmates. I told him he’s a big bully. Over the afternoon, we sat at the café in the university campus and over a slow cup of coffee, He revealed cheekily how he would pick girls up at the library on the next building. Oh, I must say, his open liner was lame. I had laugh hardly imagining how the girl would roll her eyes at this annoying boy.
The places that we went were familiar to me. I always said I might have already met him 10 years ago along one of these streets or perhaps we had bumped into each other cramping together to share a table for a quick meal. I hoped he was one those those I’ve elbowed with my umbrella on a rainy day. After all, his playground was one long winding round away from Soho. If our path did cross, I know definitely I would snare at this irritating and smelly boy with his stinky friends.
When we came back to Singapore. I cooked him a simple omelette. Green bean omelette is an old favorite of mine. Spilling my side of childhood stories and the numerous time having this omelette over porridge after school. This omelette is home to me.
With the new year, I look forth to many more getaways. I always feel so incredibly lucky to have so many trips together. The trips and meals we shared made us very much stronger. And now, home is wherever we are together.
Trim the ends of the green beans and chop thinly and evenly. Beat the eggs and add the soy sauce, pepper, sesame oil. In a hot non stick pan, add oil and briefly stir fry the green beans (about half a minute). Then with your spatula, arrange the beans into one flat layer in the pan.
Pour in the egg mixture and swivel the pan to coat the beans. Lower the heat to medium cook until dry and brown for a few minutes before flipping over to brown the other side. If the omelette is too big to flip, you can break up into quarters before flipping.