Monday, February 27, 2006

A Sunday Morning at the Chinatown Food Centre

This could well be a typical Sunday mid-morning at the Chinatown Food Centre (FC). Well, I was there on 19 Feb 06 to have my favourite Vegetarian BeeHoon by the escalator nearer to the main market entrance.

Imagine that I have been eating at this Vegetarian BeeHoon stall long before the arrival of our kids, ate with the kids and now the kids are 13 & 11. This stall still has a queue every morning and the queue is much longer on the first and fifteenth of the Lunar Month.

On a Sunday morning at 11.30am, almost all the tables were taken up. Most of the people were in their 50s to 70s, a gathering of the retired folks. An interesting item on the table seemed to be beer! One man was seen taking a mixture from a bottle of Carlsberg and a bottle of Guiness Stout. And he was drinking it and eating fruits!

Across to the other side of the FC was a dim-sum stall, which used to house the Chwee-Kuey (Teochew Rice Cake), and there was a long queue, as it was in the past. I wonder why the Chwee-Kuey stall gave up.

Here is probably one place where Cantonese is still the main language spoken, and one could say the same for many Chinatowns around the world. For many of the older people, who probably do not stay in Chinatown, Sundays are days of gatherings with old friends or old neighbours and chats could have a wide range, from politics to the mundane things.

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