The good thing about hiking in an urban environment is you don't have to carry water or watch out for snakes. Anytime you feel the thirst, just stop by a café, bar, watering hole and have a beverage.
In Singapore, there is a wide variety of both hot and cold beverages to choose from. Anything hot can also be iced. There's a lot of ice here.
I had an iced lemon tea, and they made hot tea and put ice in it. It was real iced tea---not the powder shit. It was awesome.
By far, my favorite non-alcoholic thirst quenching beverage has to be the lime juice. Yum. Love that lime juice.
The lime juice ranges in color from yellow to green and tastes a lot like lemonade. However, it's not too tart or too sweet. It's an understated lime. The way lime should be.
Yesterday (or perhaps it was today for you guys in the States), I was shopping in Chinatown for some cushion covers and table runners for the boyfriend (I think in this post, I'll call him Myles). Suddenly, I felt the thirst, so naturally I sought out a food stand. Or maybe a food stand sought me out.
‘Guava juice, Miss?' A tiny middle aged Chinese lady called out to me.
‘Do you have lime juice?' I asked.
‘Lime juice. Yes. Sit. Do you want some prawns? Some fried rice?' She asked.
‘No. Just lime juice.'
‘No lunch. Already ate I did.' I said. Sometimes in Singapore, I'm sure I'm talking like Yoda.
A heavy glass mug of lime juice was placed in front of me, and I paid for it. I stirred the chipped ice with a spoon and sipped it through the straw. It was just what I needed.
The lady sat down at the table with me.
‘See. In the bottom. Rock. In the bottom.'
I tapped something in the bottom of the glass and dug it up with a spoon.
‘Rock. You eat it.'
I studied the rock. It was dark brown. I looked at the lady in a perplexed way.
‘Maybe wrong word. Not rock. Seed.' She said.
‘Nut maybe?' I asked.
‘You eat. At end.'
I dropped the rock back into my glass and stirred some more.
‘You from Australia?' she asked.
‘Los Angeles.' I said.
‘Good. Good. You know Navy men here?'
‘No. I don't know them, but I saw them.'
‘They left yesterday.' She said with great authority. She was right too. The rowdy crew cuts in the hotel lounge had been replaced by the rowdy retired Australians. I miss Australia. I should plan a trip back to Ozzie. But I digress.
We then had a conversation about food. She told me to never eat dim sum because it was made with fatty minced meats or meat from the head (the cheapest kind). She said to always order fish and vegetables. Chinese food is better in Singapore because the water and the spices are fresher. Food stalls have just as good cooks as the restaurants. Based on my experience, I agreed with her.
We finished our culinary culture exchange when I reached the slurpy end of the lime juice. I picked up the rock seed with my spoon.
‘Eat that. It's plune.'
I wasn't sure if she had said plum or prune, but I popped it in my mouth. The rock was soft and sweet on the outside and reminded me of a fig.
‘Good. Good.' I said.
After a few minutes of intense chewing, I pulled the hard seed out of my mouth and dropped it in the glass.
‘That's definitely not a rock. You can't eat rocks.' I said.
‘Good?' she asked.
‘Good.' I said again.
‘Maybe you come back one night for dinner with your man. Good food.'
‘We will maybe.' I said.
In the meantime, there was shopping to do. But that lime juice sure made my day.