Sunday, August 23, 2009

Elixir in a red thermos

Today I was tasked with the responsibility of personally delivering some home-brewed goodness to my aunt Lil, still in hospital. She's recovering well, due in part to the food she's been getting, I'm sure...

This is a glimpse of my luan-see (what's the translation - endearingly complicated?) family in action:

My mother, early in the morning, bright-eyed and busy thinking up permutations of schedules - who to visit, who to do this and that. Plopping onto my bed to set the plans in motion.

My mother, waiting for NTUC to open at 8:30am in order to buy some liver and cook up a concoction of liver, pork fillet, ginger and just a teensy dose of brandy for the patient. It's not my kind of thing but Lil slurps it up at mid-morning and in the early afternoon. My uncle calls the potion the 'elixir'.

Me, arriving at 10am at the hospital with said concoction in a thermos container. My mum had thoughtfully packed the thermos into a decidedly auntie-looking red seagate re-usable bag, with some golden kiwis in an NTUC plastic bag, and a plastic container of apple muffins. I eyed the bag. "You're making an auntie of me", I said. "You think this is bad, I had to carry 3 bags the other day - and they were heavy ok!", pipes up the cousin who has arrived to go to church with my mum. My mother and cousin take a lift from some fellow church members who stay across the road (more permutations in action).

My grandma, who just got back from Kuching last night, arriving at the hospital at 10:30am. She has porridge in another (smaller) thermos container. I put the thermos containers side-by-side and contemplate taking a photo but (a) you're not supposed to take photos in the ward and (b) it's time to feed the patient.

Emails and SMS-es fly across and out of the country providing updates on Lil's status.

My uncle arrives at about 2pm, thereafter K and I leave. Mama stays behind to stay the afternoon, and probably because she wants to meet...

... aunty Day who will get there around 6pm with special food for dinner and to stay the night.

I love my luan-see family.

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