#17012017 – Lessons We Learn from Food

Hawker versus Hawker

This afternoon I went to the foodcourt to buy wonton soup and cheecheongfun for takeaway. I would think that the latter is more troublesome to make and the hawker auntie even has to get a bag to pour me some piping hot soy sauce. But the auntie got straight to work without a word.

I went to the roasted chicken rice stall next, as my mum wanted some dumpling soup.

“Uncle, dumpling soup takeaway please.”

‘No dumpling.’ He replied, leaning back and crossing his arms. 

“Then do you have wonton soup?”

‘Ya.’

“Then wonton soup takeaway please. Can you please help me pack the wonton separately?”

‘No lei, we don’t do that here.’

“Yeah I know but can you help me pack separately please?”

‘Extra charge hor.’

“Yeah okay can. Thank you.”

He turned his head to bark my order at his colleague, the one doing all the hard work.

Both orders of mine are troublesome, but the auntie dealt with it like a pro and this uncle was just giving off such unfriendly vibe, practically hoping that I’d walk off without ordering. Or maybe it’s just my problem?

Then came a lady who ordered hot porridge for takeaway and as she was leaving, she took a set of disposable chopsticks and spoon and the uncle was unhappy again.

“Buy porridge need chopsticks ah? Take chopsticks for what?”

The lady didn’t respond to his question, simply smiled and left.

THEN~ Came an old couple and the hawker uncle was yelling at them again, reluctant to take their orders and blabbering how their order was “troublesome” and “not something we do here”.

Eh uncle… What exactly do you do there then? You don’t cook, you don’t sell, you don’t give good service so WHAT exactly are you doing here?

I’ve been a fan of their food for a while some time back and that’s when I realized why their business is so poor. It’s a small estate and sooner or later, you’re bound to have offended every customer that visits the foodcourt.

Why?

At the end of the day, the orders still have to be fulfilled but you’re driving people away.

The cheecheongfun auntie on the other hand, packed my food nicely, with such ethics and pride. I gave her a big smile and she asked, somewhat kindly, if I was dabao-ing food for family. It was a quick and brief conversation but it leaves people feeling so happy. :’)

Later on when my mum heard of what happened, she responded just like how a typical Taurus would –

“Someday I’m going to go back. You’ve made me very curious about this uncle.”

Dear uncle, please change soon, or please start praying before you come to work, man. XD

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Fast forward to night time when I pestered my mum to go to the pasar malam with me again. Since my first visit there, I’ve been very VERY intrigued by a small Thai milk tea stall because of their hugeass cups.

And tonight – FINALLY – I mustered up the courage to make an order!!!

I can’t drink milk tea these days, so I got a chocolate ice blend. It’s so rich in flavour and I love seeing their meticulous effort putting the drink together – super polite and pleasant, so do support them if you drop by!

I took the drink home to get some photos taken before drinking. It is big enough to cover my face completely (that’s saying something). And it almost felt like my wrist was breaking from the weight!

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A side-by-side view with the Malay Takoyaki, another stall with extremely nice vendors. Notice how the cup is as wide as the styrofoam box!

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There’s a saying in Singapore that you don’t need to advertise if your food is good. Even if your stall is hidden in some random alley, people will find you. Likewise, it’s no point having a great location and great food, if you have horrible attitude. People would patronize, but they wouldn’t want to if they have a choice.

 

 

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