A slumping economy, corruption in Malaysia, the boom in data analytics, medical tourism and the hospital scene in Singapore were among the topics that came up for a casual chat at the Chinese New Year lunch at our neighbour’s home today.
An anaesthetist was among the visitors, hence the range in the discussions.
While the general belief among those who follow the Chinese Zodiac is that the Year of the Monkey hardly brought any luck, it is more a question of timing and prospects can hardly be associated with the animal sign, as one of them pointed out. That was a plausible argument.
It was a CNY lunch with a difference. Generally, they cater for fried rice along with yusheng and a range of other Chinese food varieties, based on our experience in the past years.
This year we were in for some pleasant surprise. In addition to the usual CNY food, they had chicken biriyani, mutton masala, chicken curry, yoghurt/onion salad and the Indian sweet, Kesari.
This is because the last year has seen an Indian addition in the family. An Indian boy has married a girl from the Chinese family, lending some cultural diversity to the household. The brothers and their families live separately but this was reunion time.
G Joslin Vethakumar