Friday, November 25, 2005

Not anymore

I've had a long hard work week, especially so today. Fridays are usually more hectic for me. So I thought I would treat myself to a nice dinner. As Dan and Stef were still hard at work, I went alone.

Took a real slow but short walk to a nearby Japanese/Korean restaurant. It's close to summertime now. The official start of it is but less than than a week away. The roads here seem to be quieter in summer. Even the usual "after work hour" jam along the road outside my apartment has cooled off significantly recently. From time to time, I might pass by a house where the family is packing it all into the family car with the children jumping around with excitement, no doubt leaving for a vacation destination.

I picked my spot in the restaurant and settled down to relax. Then I remembered I had forgotten to bring something to read. Duh. The chefs here usually take quite some time to prepare the food. *Sigh* Nothing left to do but to eyeball (as inconspicuously as possible) other customers, the waitresses (one of them is particularly cute but she is not on duty today) and the decor of the place. It's quite a small restaurant, this. Maybe just six tables or so and when all fully seated, it gets a little difficult to move around. Even for the waitresses.

As it turned out, the restaurant was almost full today. But only after I've made my order, sat back and started tweadling my thumbs. A young lady seated at a opposite table took a long, hard and quizzical look at me. I looked back at her, then around us. That was when I realised I was the only customer who was alone. All other tables had two people. Two relatives (I think). An old Caucasian couple. A younger Chinese couple. And two male friends.

There was a time when I would feel very embarrassed and self-conscious about eating alone. What more in a restaurant where every other table is seated with two. Not anymore.

The two guys started chatting a bit. Their discussion got a little animated and louder, allowing me to overhear parts of it. I also caught their evidently Singaporean accent.

There was a time when I would get a little kick from picking out two Singaporeans in a crowd of people just from their Singlish. Not anymore.

The food today was not bad. I tried to take my time with it but couldn't. It was all gone in no time.

There was a time when a good dinner over here at the end of a numbing day will perk up my energy levels significantly. Not anymore. At least not for today.

The sun was still well and truly up as I made my way back to the apartment. It will remain light until well after eight.

Summer used to be my most looked forward to season in Australia. Not anymore.

Still 126 days to go.


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