Apr 7, 2010
Love is...Part 13
I remembered in our early days of courting, Benny knew how much I loved animals. So he told me one day he will save up money for me to open a pet shop and he will teach me everything about retailing. But though I love animals, I told him I don't want to open a pet shop. I figured that most people love pets too and may want to venture into pet shops and the like. Back then, he told me :
"Love, you have great fore-sight. I know always, you are the one for me"
And I never knew it was donkey years later, he meant every word he said about opening a shop of my dreams. In this case now, its my new dream. Yes, opening Kitchen Capers store was to me, a very far fetched dream. I once saw a post card with a photo of a kitten sleeping. And it had a big bubble text that says "When I grow up, I want to be a Tiger". The side caption wrote "When you dream, dream BIG"
My dream of opening a retail shop was big. At least to me. I don't have all the basic know-hows. Although I know how to cook or bake and some ingredients here and there. I don't know the trade very well. After all, its just a dream.
Benny knew me inside out. What I am. What I could do or what I can't. But he believes in me. In everything I do, he thinks that I do my best and will try to make the best of it. Without a doubt in his heart, he quietly set aside his savings. Day by day, week by week..and in 20 years, he finally told me he want to open a shop. A shop of my dreams.
When he first told me about a shop space for rent and he drove me there to view the place, I didn't think very far. I thought its just a joy ride. He started talking about things I wanted to do. Then I told him the economy has yet to recover, we are treading in uncharted waters.
When he finally found a good place, he told me this shop is for us. So we have a place of our own, our own business..so we can grow old together.
I think its the sweetest thing he has done for me.
And without a doubt in my heart, I accepted the challenge. We opened our store in May 2009. Its almost a year since its opening. So much have happened. I am still learning how to run a shop. And he is always by my side, helping me, encouraging me.
Since we opened the shop, I see him literally all the time. He would come back and buy lunch for us. And we would dine at home, talked over it. And then he would drive me to the shop. At night, after he have fetched the girls from my mom's place and send them home, he would rush down to help me to close the shop.
On some days he had to attend company functions or dinners with others, he would try to find some excuse to leave sooner. And he would rather go to the shop and spend whatever time with me.
I would get SMS(Short Message Service) via the mobile phone from him. He would say things like "Love you" or "Miss you" if he couldn't come to have lunch with me or couldn't come to the shop later on to help me.
If I have to teach on a weekend, sometimes he will just tell me :
"You don't have to come to the shop. You rest, I see you are tired. I see you later"
This shop was like a blessing for us. To rekindle our past memories of us dating. Our early moments being in love with each other.
And since we opened shop, I didn't have the luxury of time and space to cook as often as I could. I felt bad. So we now have our lunch at home..simple food fare, home cooked. No more packed lunches from hawker stalls.
When I had to travel to China or Hong Kong to source for new things for the shop, I had to leave the country alone. He would find time to send me to the airport. And would say his goodbyes to me in a passionate way. As if I am going and never coming back. Whilst overseas, I travelled with my Mac iBook and we would go online via MSN and chatted about the day's events. I would tell him what I see here and ask for his advice on prices and stock to take. And he would tell me about the day at the shop.
And he would always say something like "today I ate food from outside..yucks!" It is his way of saying "I miss you" And I often promised him to cook he likes when I get back.
And true enough, when I return to Singapore, its often that you see me in the kitchen cooking up a storm. Instead of washing up, unpacking my luggage or resting from jet lag.
To my friends, they think I am pampering him too much. To me, This is LOVE. Shown and expressed and given out and returned.
Read my past entry about my journey of a 1000 miles
End of part 13...