Posts Tagged ‘restaurants’

There are signs everywhere. I mean that literally. For bathrooms. Exits. Stores. Everything.

Thank God most of us can read.

And we always see the same old ones.

Stop. Emergency Exit. Toilet.

We read them on autopilot. Not thinking twice about them.

I was in Mumbai last month. As I was waiting for the elevator I read the sign on the wall.

Do not use elevator in case of fire. 

Made me pause. Because I’ve only ever seen that sign displayed, “In case of fire do not use elevator.”

Putting “Do not use” at beginning of the sentence caused me to hesitate for a second. Like I almost didn’t get on the lift. Not out of spite. Just because I was leaning toward the “Do not use.” Because it was at the beginning of the sentence.

Here is another sign. Located at an institution of learning. I won’t mention the name to protect the innocent.


What’s wrong with this picture? Besides me capturing a tree and a partially constructed KL building in the reflection.

First of all. Just for the record. I am cautious about bathroom signs. I pay very close attention. Probably stems from me possibly wandering into the gents’ bathroom when I was about six years old. At the old Tiano’s Five Acres during a turkey raffle for Little League baseball. Scarred for life. I read and reread bathroom signs all the time before entering. Just to make sure.

I stop and stare at this door. You can’t see this part in the photo so you’ll have to trust me.

It actually says “Push” and yet it has a handle. Me no like. At all.

But that’s not the part that confuses me.

I know for a fact that there are three toilets behind that handled door. So if only one woman is allowed at a time how on earth will I know if someone is already in there??

Me no like.

But I understand it was not intentional.

However, there was a sign at a restaurant in the U.S. that was totally intentional.

I would enter the bathroom door that displayed the “Women” sign.

As soon as I closed the door it had a sign, “Welcome to the Men’s Room.”

Yikes! What? What?

The sadistic beings got me every time. Every single time.

I second guessed myself with a mini heart attack every time. I have to assume I wasn’t the only one. Or the sign wouldn’t exist. They (those evil restauranteurs ) knew the world was full of doubting Thomases –not sure how to make Thomas plural so that will have to suffice. People doubting themselves and their ability to read. And make the right decision.

The world is full of signs. Go for the one that makes you feel good.






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I remember a lovely evening at our favorite Ethiopian restaurant. It’s located in West L.A.’s “Little Ethiopia.” Just a hop, skip and a jump from the Fairfax Orthodox Jews. Love the diversity.

At a nearby table sat a group of people. Seemingly waiting for another person to arrive before food orders decided.

He arrives. A tall, handsome black man. Everyone at the table stands. Jocularity abounds. Handshakes, hugs and laughter.

Then he and this Indian American (not to be confused with American Indian) woman embrace.

Awwww. Old friends. Maybe husband and wife. Maybe boyfriend and girlfriend? Possibly relatives?

And then they kissed. Awwww.

But then they kept on kissing. On the lips. Fiercely. Okay, so maybe they’re not relatives.

Not a peck, mind you, but a full on, as we used to say, making out. No coming up for air. Standing right there in the restaurant!

Who could look away?

Well, all of us. We had no choice as it felt like we were somehow invading their space. Although, truth be told, everyone kept sneaking a look back to see when it would actually come to an end. Or progress even further.

I was thinking it might be one of those television shows with a hidden camera. So, I quickly applied powder to my face to reduce any noticeable sheen.

The waiter, our favorite, watches with amusement while standing beside them. Waiting for the show to be over so he can get on with his job.

Finally, it ends. Whew! Forks and knives start clinking once again . Maybe even audible sighs of relief in all corners of the place.

But there’s still this uncomfortable, palpable feeling floating around like new ice needs to be broken.

And then the waiter smoothly leans in, sets their napkins down, and says in his sing-song voice,”Well! Wasn’t that a nice hello!”

I started chuckling.

This phrase will forever be embedded in my mind as synonymous words for a bit of unbridled passion.

So, today, I wish you all a nice hello.  Whatever you find yourself doing. Working, playing, studying or volunteering. I hope it’s all with a nice hello.

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What do I miss about America? I have a few months under my belt of this overseas living so I suppose I sort of have a running list in my head.

This is not to say I do not like living here in Kuala Lumpur. I am really, really enjoying it. But home will always be home. And America, for all of her faults and foibles (she is human after all) is mine. Love her! And miss some things about her. It’s normal.

You can get just about any item or product you want or need here. You just have to search for it and it might cost you. I miss not having to search for it and it not costing me more than it should. In a week, I can hit 3-4 different grocery stores. Meat, vegetables, fruits and staples store. And I have never liked grocery shopping!

I miss inventory. Here there is little to no inventory in some of the stores. There are no back rooms. You know those rooms. When you find a shoe on the rack and ask if they have a size six in the back. And there is no back. In a lot of cases what is on display is what you get. And if they don’t have it they just tell you, “No have.” Sometimes the folks just shoot out the famous line, “Outta stock.”

Sizing can also be an issue at local stores. Never a problem in big, ole America. I was recently browsing at a nearby shop and noticed a cute pair of navy cargo shorts. They sort of looked a bit tiny in the rear end so I halfheartedly grabbed a pair sized “large.” Please note I am not Norwegian, German, Polish or any of those countries that make big, tall girls. I am lots smaller. But not Asian smaller. I am a white, middle aged Irish American woman packing an extra ten pounds on a small frame. The “large” did not make it past my knee! I am not kidding. I yelled out to my daughter to grab the “extra large” size. Wow, never really wanted to utter those words out loud. Especially in a women’s store. I double checked to make sure I wasn’t in the children’s section. Really. The “extra large” did not make it past my mid thigh. Apparently my thigh is more than extra large. Reminds me of Thanksgiving. Can you pass me the extra, extra large turkey thigh? No, no, not the white meat! Big thigh. Big sigh.

Which leads me to the other white meat. Pork is not always readily available. Due to the religion of the country. But you can definitely find it. And sometimes even eat it unknowingly at Chinese restaurants when you order chicken fried rice. Hmmm, doesn’t taste like chicken. That’s weird because doesn’t everything taste like chicken?

I am not even the biggest pork eater but there are some things that I love and can never be substituted. Prosciutto, pepperoni and bacon. That’s just the way it is. One could convince themselves (for health or religious reasons) that turkey bacon or turkey anything cuts it. But that would never be true. I’m of Irish descent. I know. My people eat black pudding, for Heaven’s sake. So, Domino’s Pizza and Papa John’s can taste just a tad different here with the substitute pepperoni. And I do miss my BLT sandwiches.

Miss the U.S. weather a bit. The heat here is consistent. It is always 88 degrees and sticky. It might rain for a bit every day or every other day. But that is the only change. Make up on one’s face can last up to three minutes. And that is the three minutes from when you actually apply it to the time you make it out of the bathroom. It doesn’t even get windy. Southern California could be pretty consistent but when it’s dry and 73 degrees no one’s complaining about it. All my Facebook friends are posting beautiful photos of New England foliage, pumpkins, Halloween and talking about brisk weather, apple picking and raking leaves. I miss that season.

Next posting will be about all the wonderful things I am grateful for and the things I will miss when I leave Malaysia. The list will be long.

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