Brunei Darussalam


Exactly a decade ago today on the eve of Valentine’s Day, my wife and I were expecting our first kid. She had been in labour pains for the longest and most torturous moments of imminent motherhood. At 8.49 AM on the 13th Feb 1998 our son Jamie was born and today he turns double-digit 10!

© Jan Shim Photography

I asked Jamie what sort of cake would he like for his birthday, he said, “I just want the blow out the candles, I don’t like cakes!” Since the candles needed something to stand on, I choose a black forest cake with a choc-board on which “Happy 10th Birthday, Jamie” is written.

Up until tonight, Jamie had been excited about celebrating his birthday at Kaizen Sushi after a memorable first time there not too long ago. Before Kaizen, the only places where we can find decent Western/Japanese food after hours are in Kuala Belait notably Fratini or Excapade Sushi (the other exceptions being the kopitiams). Between KB and Seria, the kids would instinctively choose Seria as would I—a no-brainer choice between 30mins vs 8 mins drive!

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© Jan Shim Photography

The other compelling reason to eat at Kaizen being the absence of crowd. The ever so popular and highly successful Excapade is inherently noisier and you can’t just drop in without having first made a reservation. We had way too much to eat tonight and I’ve taken a fancy to a dish called “Half Cooked Beef” (pictured top left). The Japanese fried tofu served with special sauce is simply delicious while salmon head remains a clear favourite with my wife. We never used to be this mad about Japanese food but lately HSBC CEO Tareq Muhmood introduced me to the allure of Indian cuisine @ Zaika.

As a sidenote, today being the 7th day of the lunar new year is also ‘People’s Day’ traditionally called Renri, the day everyone grows one year older. Turns out also, according to a Wikipedia article, that today is the day Yee Sang is tossed and eaten and make wishes for continued wealth and prosperity.

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