Ringing in the New Year, my vote for the best celebration goes to Seattle!
If you’re internet savvy enough to search in YouTube, look for the Virtual New Year’s at Seattle’s Needle Show. Everything was virtual, including the fireworks! I watched it with utter fascination as twirling lights and explosions filled the sky around Seattle’s Space Needle. Having been one of the first to zoom up this architectural landmark way back in 1961, it has managed to catch up with the virtual world by creating a most spectacular light show that had no effect on our environment. Every time I would witness the fabulous fireworks at the Tour Eiffel in Paris, I’d go home practically choking from all the smoke that tons of pyrotechnics would pollute my beloved City of Lights.
Well, Seattle beat everyone with its virtual presentation of laser lights and projections that encircled the Space Needle this New Year’s Eve. There was no resultant smoke that poisoned lungs and pristine air although the foggy night spelled a magic hue to the sound and light show that lasted more than 10 minutes. Perhaps, one day, our City of Smiles would come up with such a beautiful display surrounding our beloved Mayor’s folly, the controversial Halandumon Tower in downtown Bacolod.
Top of the year 2020 was a rediscovery of epicurean delights due to the Kung Flu. With nothing much to do but search the web, the city was abuzz with the ingenious Facebook page created by enterprising Mitzi Gamboa Tongoy, Bacolod Q-sina Eats which rose to having more than 12 thousand followers! Joining together with the other site of Balay Qikay Eshop, a Christmas Market page came up which reached 16,000 people, what with the 85 merchants selling a wide array of more than 168 products.
But I stuck to my fav Q-sina Eats since I needed to calm down my ever nervous stomach, knowing I had to abandon any future trips to Paris, France. The talk of the town was the daily offerings of this virtual market which ranged from imported smoked salmon to new and wonderful products, like fresh milk, making a lot of moms tech-savvy all of a sudden.
Number one was the sourdough bread craze that drove socialites, royalettes, and kitchen divas to practice their arm muscles by producing the most authentic loaf. Pronounced as best of the year is Vicky Zayco Garcia’s recipe. It has the right airiness none could muster and with just the right note of sourness to the dough. Now, if only she could commercialize this masterpiece because, for the past year, she’s been doing it only for a very select few.
Talking about breads, close at number two was the French Brioche of Firehook Boulangerie et Patisserie located at Mountainview Subdivision. Next to being in Paris, a good start of the day is a nice toasted slice of brioche with just salted butter – preferably French, of course, like the President brand. I don’t know what Rhea Fernandez puts in her dough, but it’s just close to perfection, smelling like it just came out of the oven Chez Fauchon in the ritzy Place de la Madeleine in downtown Paris.
Are you sharp as a tack for the precious fungi called truffle? I was adept with this culinary treasure decades ago until I overdosed on it in Milan where our groupie of three consumed almost 20,000 Euros of the black ball of mushroom that dogs and pigs dig out from the forests in Europe. Well, if you want to be treated to lotsa truffle, get in touch with Little Miss Truffle on Facebook, who introduced me to her truffle risotto which was like baby’s food for the gods and the perfectly al dente linguini in truffle cream which was not overwhelmed with the smoky touch of the best truffle available in the Philippines. I still don’t know how Isabel Golez from Silay can offer such amazing truffle dishes at such a low price but I’m not complaining. We have it here in Negros Island!!! Consider yourselves very lucky.
Last but not the least, for something exotic, Korean restaurant Jip Bab has the best Jjajang Myun (Black Bean Carbonara) and Odeng Tang which is a flat fishcake skewered in a healthy broth. I rarely go Korean ever since our fav Resto closed at Mayfair Mall. Well, this new eating haven opened up in Lacson Street next door to Mushu and my groupie is still raving over these new delights introduced to us by its debonair owner.
Let me start this New Year with a song that has become a signature song for Walt Disney. I’m sure a lot of you know the tune but don’t memorize the lyrics. Well, this is my treat for all my beloved readers as the year starts — in our hearts.
A dream is a wish your heart makes
When you’re fast asleep
In dreams you will lose your heartaches
Whatever you wish for, you keep.
Have faith in your dreams and someday
Your rainbow will come smiling through
No matter how your heart is grieving
If you keep on believing
The dream that you wish will come true
(from Disney’s “Cinderella)
My prayer: Lord God, we thank you that you have come to this earth. Let a light shine out again and again among those who hear your gospel, also among those with sincere hearts. May they come to know your light and receive salvation in Jesus Christ.*