Sunday morning, woke up yawning, filled the pool for a swim,
pulled down the head and looked in the glass just to see if I was in,
went up the stairs and kissed my woman to make her come alive
'cause with fifteen kids and a family on the skids,
I got to go for a Sunday drive.
Fifteen kids and a family on the skids,
I got to go for a Sunday drive…
It was hardly descriptive of my situation, but the title comes to mind. I first heard the song in 1969 when I had a Jose Feliciano's cassette. The song was originally Bee Gees', written by them.
Anyway, wife was in a hurry to go to Penang, citing jazz music at Little Penang Street Market to get me interested. Few days ago when her friend was around for medical treatment, I was dissuaded from going to UOB ATM even though we passed by and was only 100 yards away from it, because again she was in a hurry, to meet her. But I knew a Penang trip on a Sunday invariably included Lorong Kulit flea market. It was during the journey that she got a call and it turned out to be from GB Tan, an antique dealer in Penang. Then SP explained that she had called her earlier asking if she had anything worth browsing. Slowly I got to know what's on her mind. But because we did not have breakfast, she wondered whether we could find a coffee shop with stalls for breakfast before going to Lorong Kulit. I remembered there is a new hawker centre called Sg. Pinang just after the turnoff from Lebuhraya Lim Chong Eu. We found the variety of foods too many to choose from. Anyway we settled for Hokien Mee (Har Meen or Prawn noodles) and a plate of Char Kway Teow for sharing. The Hokien Mee was only Rm3 but the CKT cost Rm5.50! But considering the 4 fairly big prawns, it was worth it.
At Lorong Kulit where we parked our car, we found our favourite Malay restaurant closed because of Maal Hijrah which made our breakfast at Sg Pinang a wise decision.
After the flea market, we headed to Chulia St to meet GB. I waited in the car because there was no parking. As it turned out, there were some customers in her shop and she actually asked SP to keep an eye for her! Then she had to settle the balance of Rm20 which she owed Leong for the rattan work. So by the time we eventually got to Little Penang, it was almost 3 pm! So much for the jazz music! As it turned out, it was a let-down to me because for the next 2 hours, nobody used the drums kit! When we arrived, there was a choir singing Christmas hymns, followed by jazz poetry! No offence meant, but most people wouldn’t think that to be as exciting as jazz music. Then a solo performance by a talented young man playing ukulele, which seems a popular instrument these days. Then two young men, a guitarist and a singer, sang some current pop songs, well encouraged by their supporters. The last act was a father and daughter saxophonists backed by pre-recorded music using a notebook, amplified by a mixer. But I don’t envy them because being the last performers, they were playing to an already small and dwindling audience, with people leaving and workers stacking the plastic chairs and dismantling equipment! How discouraging I thought. This reminded me of a Chinese wedding dinner when guests were leaving and the singer singing ‘lai, lai, lai, lai; lai, lai, lai lai; lai, lai lai--- which sounded like ‘come, come, come’ in Hokien!
I sat on the same seat throughout because I now have this problem when seated for long, like on a train journey, and when it is time to get up, I would find it painful at the bottom of my spine. I can recall having stood up twice: when a more senior lady told (not asked) me, like we were old friends, to stand up so that she could use a t-shirt to measure the ‘L’ size on my back shoulder to see if it would fit someone she had in mind! The second time was when I recognized Paula (Masterwordsmith) in person for the first time and I stood up to shake her hand. I could recognize her first because her picture in FB is recent while mine was taken 5 years ago! She must have been disappointed to see an older person than the picture shown! Some sort of misrepresentation, I thought. Anyway, after a quick exchange of pleasantries, she was off like Speedy Gonzales.
For dinner, we headed back to Sg. Pinang for something different. We looked around the more stalls opened in the evening. We settled for a bowl of rice and pork porridge (Rm6), a pig's trotter rice (Rm6.50), a piece of barbequed stingray (Rm14) with a whole garlic-filled brinjal (Rm7.50). We had to save the last item for home.
These days, we do not have flight details of our children’s trips unless with prior arrangement to pick them. As we expected our son and wife to be back in the afternoon and no phone call from him yet, SP tried and could not be reached. While on the way back, she tried again at 7 pm. Then I tried again, and again calling Dot’s phone number and still could not be reached. I could have tried calling KLIA but we don’t even know by which airline! Then SP suggested calling the UK number which Beng called her when he was in London. It turned out to be his ex-landlord’s number and Shaun said taking into account the 6 hours in transit, he should be back by now. Sure enough, soon after we got a call from Beng while waiting for their luggage, that they had just arrived. How did Shaun know about the delay? From Facebook, he guessed as he posted about it while waiting in Bahrain. And the airline? Gulf Air!