Sep 202011

The next morning I checked out of my room at 11 and just barely managed to drag myself down to the beanbags in the lounge. Although I’d hardly slept at all, my flight to Thailand wasn’t until 6 so I figured I could snooze just long enough to power myself on to the next evening’s lodging.

…Or so I thought. Somewhere around 2pm Sankar’s brother called and invited me out to lunch; he’d actually done so the night before but I figured he’d simply forgotten or overslept. Nope! And by total coincidence, his restaurant was only a few blocks from where I was staying 🙂

As it turns out Sankar is just one brother of three – and among all of their shared businesses (restaurants, a shopping mall, a gold shop, etc) the Banana Leaf Apolo is by far the most successful. It’s famous country-wide, has won countless awards and has even been visited by the president himself (as well as international names like Mel Gibson). Needless to say it was an honor to be escorted in, introduced to the entire staff as “his new friend from California,” and treated to an ENORMOUS gourmet lunch of far more than I could eat. Including their specialty: fish head. It truly was a meal to remember and a great way to wrap up my stay in the country – even if I did feel like my stomach was about to pop. We chatted about everything from life in Singapore and India to my “unusual” nomadic lifestyle…but more than anything, he seemed interested in my ideas for how he could “high-tech” his businesses. It’ll be cool to see how many become a reality the next time I make my way here 🙂

We talked for so long that before I knew it my flight was just around the corner, so we hopped in his car and headed straight to the airport. Kinda funny to pull up to the budget terminal in a brand new top-of-the-line Mercedes 😆

We said our goodbyes and our thanks – and just like that, I was on my way back to Thailand.

I can hardly wait… 😀

Note: These posts are behind realtime; the above took place on Thursday, February 24th.

  19 Responses to “Fish Head Breakfast”

  1. @budget..freddie’s son.

  2. Why pay more? 😛

  3. The host name is PandiRajan & he is owners’ first son. Looks strange u dont even know the name of the host who treated u so well & dropped u at the airport as well. Ha ha ha… I am a close buddy to Rajan also. BTW how u got to know him??? Just kinda curious to know.
    Have a nice time in Thailand as well… Cheers

  4. I thought it was PandiArajan, no? I just didn’t write it because when I posted the previous article I didn’t yet know it, and as I’d already introduced him as “Sankar’s bro” I figured I’d just keep things clear 😛

    Wow though – small world! I met one of their friends at Zook a few nights earlier, she invited me to a little shindig they were having at the Marina Bay Sands, and we were introduced there.

    Now my turn: as a close friend, how’d you happen upon my blog post?? 🙂

  5. Just googled banana leaf restaurant, to try out some authentic restaurant style indian recipes… & wow i got ur blog (accidently my google search frame was limited to past one 24 hrs, just to find your blog) can say pandia rajan aswell. I know Rajan is a big techie freak even in his Iowa days at U.S. of A. No wonder his eyes would have popped out when u poured in ur hi-fi ideas.
    What sort of s/w development r u into, if i may ask??
    When was this pic taken actually Justin, as u have mentioned postings are not realtime???

  6. Wow, that’s an INCREDIBLE coincidence then! Just Googling food, you happen to find a post about a good friend of yours 🙂

    My development:
    The pic was taken this February.

  7. (Also, by chance do you have Pandiarajan on Facebook? I looked but couldn’t find him or Sankar…)

  8. You can find him as M C Raajjan Mcr in FB. R u in touch with Rajan via email or phone? Had a glance at your projects & seems “wow”. Good luck buddy!!

  9. Cool! Haha I never woulda found him – there isn’t even a pic 🙂

    Nope, haven’t been in touch since Singapore; I left him my email but never heard from him, so I can only assume it got lost or was written illegibly or something, hehe 😛


  10. i know ….his profile pic is an oxymoron like sun-moon combo. His mail id is U being a nomad, r u mad enough to visit India ??? or have been already??
    Really u make a very good travel writer as ur blog makes us travel with u & i’m one big “armchair travel freak” 🙂

  11. Btw.. did u like india food Justin??

  12. Man…I’m still totally blown away that you just happened to find my blog post about a guy you happened to know (whose name I didn’t even include! :P)

    >>being a nomad, r u mad enough to visit India ??? or have been already??

    It’s been on my list for awhile, but nope, haven’t made it over there yet. I dunno how far back you’ve read but my good buddy (and travel companion) Peder is in India at this very moment; We’re meeting up in Vietnam a couple weeks down the line (I’m in Serbia at the moment).

    >>u make a very good travel writer as ur blog makes us travel with u

    Thanks! I try 🙂 Feel free to “like” my Facebook page to keep up with updates!

    >>did u like india food Justin??

    I LOVE Indian food in the US; of course I’ve never had it in India itself, but to be honest I didn’t like it *quite* as much in Malaysia as I do back home simply because of the much higher bone-to-meat ratio, haha 😛

  13. cool meal…..sounds fun

  14. hi justin…have a Great week end buddy 🙂

  15. Interesting how the picture is of your flight to Bangkok and a wheelchair 😀

  16. Hah I never even noticed the wheelchair 😛

  17. looking forward to reading on- you are one freakin lucky traveler!

  18. I guess so…sometimes even without the bunny ears! 😆

  19. What a great connection to make. Another testament to the wonders of travelling.

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