Sunday, September 28, 2014

Potluck Gathering - After Russia Trip :)

~ "Remember that every good friend was once a stranger" ~
Our last night in Russia - Cheersss!!!

It's been almost two weeks since our trip to Russia ended. On the last night we were together inside the Moscow night cruise, I was suddenly invited to attend the Potluck gathering by S, a kind and capable business woman, who has two grown-up children. She said, "We are planning to hold a potluck at J and C's house (a retiree couple) after this trip. It will be held on 27th Sep. We invite all the tour participants, except one family." *Pause. When S mentioned 'except one family', I didn't ask her 'WHO', but my brain worked almost immediately thinking of 'that' family. Although I didn't know the reason why (they didn't want to invite them), but my heart was in ease that I didn't have to see 'them' again.

"So, are you able to go on that date?" S awoke me from my own thinking. "27? Saturday ya? I think it shouldn't be any problem. Perhaps I'll bring my son along," answered me. "Ya, ya, you can bring your son or even your husband along. We will contact through What's App to arrange the details."

For this trip we had to join the tour due to many reasons. First, the language. Second, for the sake of convenience since my parents and little niece were going. Third, I heard that it wasn't that safe for foreigner to roam around by themselves as you may be detained or followed by the KGB (Committee for State Security) as they thought you were the 'spy'. And the validity of the Visa granted was really the exact date on when you arrive and on when you depart. No more, no less. To make the Visa, you even needed a handwritten invitation letter from Russia side to prove that you were going there purely as a tourist.

Fun time!!! :)

It's all fate that 21 of us (including our tour guide) were in the same group of this tour. Through 10 days being together we slowly connected ourselves as we sat down together for meals, walked together, dragged our luggage to and from bus and train together, attended Ballet together, helped each other in taking photos, queuing toilet together, felt the same fear of pickpocket inside the Metro station together, painted our Russian dolls together, and so on. It's considered not bad that we tried to understand and accommodate to each other need throughout this journey - except one family. 

So, the long awaited day had finally come! :) We communicated on what food to bring. At first, as I'm not a good cook, I offered to bring Vodka. But then, their menu was more on the Peranakan theme. Some even mentioned not to bring 'cucumber' as we had so much of it - almost everyday - when we were in Russia hahahaha... :P

Well, I was afraid that Vodka too, would remind them of Russia. Hahaha.... Therefore, I offered to bring the famous dessert from the place where I work, which was Durian Pengat instead. It was really the right choice as it's too a Peranakan dessert, and favorited by the host couple, J and C. Only one person didn't eat it as she didn't like the durian.

Delicious home-cooked Mee Siam by C :)

Thirteen of us met up yesterday. J and C prepared home-cooked Mee Siam, which you could eat it dry or with gravy. Oh, it was delicious! Personally I love Mee Siam. The gravy plus the lime made it tasting sweet and sour. Hmmmm.... Nyummy! Plus the sambal to add the spiciness on it! They also made cute shape 'O' Ku Kueh - black color turtle shape cake filled with green bean paste.

Our delicious food ^^ (Photo by Landa)

The young couple J and A brought Soon Kueh, Rice  or Peng Kueh, and 'Ang' Ku Kueh - similar with 'O' Ku Kueh but red in color. L made Fried Rice with Salted Fish and topped with Fish Floss bought specially from Kuantan, Malaysia. C's maid made delicious Tao Pok filled with vegetables. Yalama! It was really really nice! I loved it!

Soda drink with Cointreau soaked strawberry

M cooked Red Bean Soup for dessert. V and S came with Barbecued Char-Siew Chicken Wings. Last but not least, S with her Steamed White Chicken. Hhmmmm..... All the dishes were delicious!!! I ate a bit here and there but ended up felt very full! Hehehe.... The Bandung drink and Soda with Cointreau soaked strawberry were provided by J and C filled our thirst.

Wonderful evening with great company! :)

We chit chatted while eating, not forgetting to take photo of the food and ourselves! :) Thank you everyone for arranging this and all the food that you brought to fill our stomach up. We talked lots about our trip and also about birds - hehe... It's J favorite pets.

We went home with packed leftover food, all happily. Hope to meet you again for the next gathering and at the mean time, keep in touch! Thank you everyone! :)
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