Yes, I know that I promised myself to document the changes and the adjustments that I will have when I transferred here in Singapore, however, I think I become way too busy and way too lazy to write. Well, okay, most of the times it was because I'm too lazy - either too lazy to write or too lazy to bring my laptop with me. Sheesh! Okay, maybe I won't be able to catch up on my writings and maybe this can be the only available time that I have now to write plus I'm feeling that I'm having the writer streak. And I think I'll allow myself to write whatever I want and whatever I feel. No edits. So here goes the biggest changes that I have in my life right now.
- Food: Yes, my dears, FOOD is my greatest weakness. I love food and this in turn became my greatest fear when I transferred here. I won't pretend that I like curry because I don't. And most of the feedback that I got from my colleagues that most of the food that are being offered in the hawker stations and restaurants have curry in it. Okay, there are lot of varieties of food being offered here and I can skip the curry. Good thing we can cook Filipino food when we went home from the office so that means we won't be missing food back home that much. Well the next problem however are the substitutes ingredients. Here are some of those things that we have encountered:
- Tinola: The chili leaves dilemma! - If you want to cook a perfect tinola, you have to put sili leaves (chili leaves). So when we went to the wet market we tried to look for chili leaves . Me to Uncle, "Uncle, do you have chili leaves? You know, the leaves of chili?" And Uncle looked at me with wondering eyes and said "No!". I don't know if he understood what I said but I was wondering how to explain more to the vegetable seller knowing I cannot add "you know, the one that was being used in tinola?" Well, what the heck, I don't want to explain more and to complicate things so I turned to Jing and said "Hehehe.. Okay ung mukhang kangkong na lang ang gamitin natin!" (Okay, let's just use kangkong leaves instead!). You can also use the big green chili (the one that is being used in sinigang) as an alternative.
- Ginisang Patola na may Miswa: The quest for the missing miswa. - We were craving for this dish, however when we went to the grocery store we didn't found any miswa that is available so we went home with nothing in hand. Due to the consistent craving that we had, Addie and Jing looked for an alternative and we found this long-life noodles in Fairprice and voila! It has the same taste as miswa!
- Escabeche: The tale of the missing cornstarch. - We saw this fish in the wet market located below Punggol Plaza. One of my housemates said that it was lapu-lapu. But who cares? I can only identify bangus, galunggong, tilapia, bisugo ang cabayas. The other fish species all looks the same to me. Going back to lapu-lapu, we agreed to cook it escabeche style (Note: We will be calling it Escabeche since we will be using vinegar instead of pineapple sauce, because if you use pineapple sauce it will be "sweet and sour". - Addie) and if you want to cook escabeche, you'll need to thicken the sauce and that when you need a "slurry". Okay, I'm using a cooking term here. Haha! Slurry means a mixture of cornstarch and water. So we searched the grocery again for cornstarch but to out surprise they do not have any. So Jing and Addie bought "potato starch" and it works just the same as cornstarch! Hah!
- Daing na Bangus: The cutting edge. - Then again, the cravings. This time for daing na bangus! So we bought bangus from Sheng Shong and Jing cut the fish and marinated the fish when we got home. Later on we learned from Shao that we can request the fish vendors to clean and cut the fish "butterfly style"!
- Train rides. I'm a bus-jeepney kind of person. So the train thing is a big adjustment for me. The good thing about the Singapore trains are that they have these shopping malls connected to several MRT/LRT stations. It's really convenient since you don't have to cross streets to go somewhere, you don't have to get wet when it's raining, and you just need to walk back to the MRT/LRT station to get back to where you want to go next.
- Walk-a-ton. BIG! HUGE adjustment. And until now I'm still coping to this and I guess I'm making much progress. I'm proud of myself. I don't do much walking before. But you have no other option but to walk when you are here in SG, unless you have that much money to pay for a cab. You walk when you go to the bus stops, you walk when you go to the train stations, you walk when you go to office, you walk when you go to hawker stations.. yeah so much of the time you just walk around. So I suggest you buy a comfortable shoes with good quality so you can have less damage to your feet. And you need to take good care of your legs too to avoid having varicose veins.
- Heights. - During my first month stay here I'm feeling a little dizzy. It feels like you are moving although you are just staying at one place. I do not know if this was because I was living 17 storeys above the ground or if I'm working on the fifth floor. Was it because of gravity?
I'm ending this entry for now. I hope that I can still find time to write more. Ciao ciao!