Singapore celebrates its 50th birthday, its Golden Jubilee, in just a matter of days. As Singaporeans, we are all doing our part, big or small, to celebrate as one family and in an unprecedented scale. These activities are in full swing and the participants at the coming SG50 National Day Parade (NDP) on 9th August have fine-tuned their show during the full-dress rehearsal last Saturday.
Friendship is perhaps a very difficult thing to explain in our lives. She does not walk in front of you nor walk behind you for she is best when walking beside you. You overlook the fact that she can be fastidious or even critical because you know that she is kind by nature.
Such a friend is Jane. A throwback to the two years when we attended night classes after work, thrice a week for two years, is this: she would hand over copies of the lecture notes for those classes that I had missed out when I had to travel overseas for business trips. We were studying for our post-graduate diploma in business administration.
And so in this Golden Jubilee year when all around us I can see Singapore celebrating, a little quote prompted me to celebrate the birthday and our 38-year old friendship with a dinner.
“It is more fun to talk with someone who doesn’t use long, difficult words but rather short, easy words like “What about lunch?”
A.A Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh
Lunch is good, but dinner is better. And so my family and I celebrated Jane’s birthday and our 38-year old friendship in a decidedly sumptuous style – with fine dining in a revolving Chinese restaurant that overlooks the Marina Bay.
This is our culinary trip in pictures:
1. Chilled Geoduck Clam in Yuzu Sesame Dressing Accompanied With Kaluga Queen Caviar
2. Braised Cave Bird’s Nest With Freshly-peeled Crab Meat And Black Truffle
3. Wild Ocean Fish With Pickled Chilli In Hot And Sour Consomme
4. Chef’s Homemade Sorbet
5. Braised Fish Maw, Royal Sea Cucumber, Wild Mushroom And Kurobuta Belly Served In Claypot
6. Braised Lobster With Longevity Noodles
7. Double-boiled Hashima In Fritillaria Stewed Snow Pear
Yes, many of you would have identified the restaurant by now. If not, here are more hints. It is housed at the top of a tower and the restaurant revolves and thus provides commanding views of the Marina Bay. The tower itself is in a fact a marker of history and it is located right within a well-conserved part of old Singapore. Tong Le is amongst my top choices for a special celebration.
Perhaps old friendship, one which has spanned nearly four decades, is like a well-conserved precinct. And the birthday celebration is a marker of that journey. Happy Birthday Singapore and Jane 🙂