Four Oh… and Just a Little More

I’m not usually a birthday celebration kinda guy. This is possibly tied into my shyness (yes, my shyness. Stop laughing, you), and even my own insecurities. But, much like everyone else, I do enjoy feeling loved.

Nadia, of course, understands all this. Which is why – along with my cousin, Charissa – she planned a perfectly-sized surprise get-together for me last week, with some of my other relatives.

It was a lovely, intimate dinner at the Eurasian restaurant, Quentin’s, over in Sentosa. (Even after almost a week, I’m still thinking about their gula melaka lava cake.) The best part of the evening though was that we got to re-create this photo from my very first birthday, taken in my aunt’s old place in Terang Bulan Avenue…

… albeit with a few minor adjustments and a whole lot more grey hairs.

I’ve thanked Nadia and Charissa (and the rest of the family) several times already, but as I ease into my forties, I just wanted to say it again: thank you so much, guys. It was the celebration I never knew that I needed.


If you’re curious about Eurasian cuisine, by the way, and want to give it a try, Quentin’s is genuinely fantastic – and not just because of that gula melaka lava cake. Their buah keluak curry is phenomenal and the curry devil’s great too.

The Sentosa outlet leans just a smidge towards fine-dining, even though it’s still got a nice warm and welcoming vibe, but if you’re looking at something more laid back, they’ve got a spot in the Eurasian Association too.


Tiny bit of self-promotion, since you’re here. The indie online bookstore, Wormhole, interviewed Jannah and me recently about Worlds Apart. We discussed mental health and what it was like for us to work together, and I even learned the secret behind Charissa’s mole.

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