I love Chinatown. I love it because of the food, the people, the culture, and did I mention the food?
My favorite resto is this hole-in-the-wall place named Wai Ying. Mukha lang siyang cafeteria na pahaba pero sobrang panalo ang food dito. Ang mura pa. Busog ka na sa P50.
Yesterday afternoon, kasama ko sina She-ra at Dookie nagpunta ng Wai Ying. Actually, sumimba muna kami sa Binondo Church, kaso we had to leave before the end of the mass kasi ang gagang She-ra, muntik nang mapa-away dun sa katabi naming babae.
"Eh sa totoo namang sinisiksik niya ako eh!" She-ra shrieked as we hurried outside of the church parking lot.
"Marse, matanda na yung ale, pinatulan mo pa!" I scolded him.
"Heller! Kebs ako sa age gap namin. I don't like it when people invade my personal space," sabi pa ni She-ra na nang-gagalaiti, "Eh amoy efficascent oil pa man din siya!"
"Ang arte mo naman," said Dookie, while fiddling with his cellphone and taking various shots of Chinatown.
A kalesa trotted past us.
She-ra poked me in the arm, "Bookie, tignan mo yung sa kabayo oh. Anlaki."
I laughed, "Bastos ka talaga!"
"It kinda looks familiar... donchateenk?" She-ra teased. I ignored him.
"Where in the world are we going to eat ba?" She-ra asked.
"May alam ako na place. Di siya fab ha, pero panalo ang food," I told them, leading them past the small bridge and into Wai Ying's.
As we entered Wai Ying, napansin ko na medyo aligaga ang She-ra, "Sure ka ba dito, Bukeera? Para siyang cafeteria."
I smiled at them and chose a table right in front of their glass case filled with various dimsum.
"I like it," Dookie said, looking around, "It's clean naman eh."
Just then, a tall hunky cute asian guy entered the resto and sat next to our table. Mukhang kilala na siya doon kasi binati siya agad ng mga waiters and waitresses.
"Sir Marcus! Tagal niyo nang di dumadaan dito ah!" ang bati nung isang waiter na kamukha ni Kachupoy.
"Sensya na, medyo busy sa shop eh," said the asian hunky named Marcus, "Dating order pa rin ha?"
Meanwhile, She-ra was making papansin sa guy by staring at him, turning his back on us in his chair. Soooobrang obvious.
"Ummm She-ra? Order na tayo?" I asked him.
"I know what I want to eat na..." She-ra said, and that got Hunky Asian's attention. He looked up from his cellphone at us and smiled at She-ra.
She-ra, in turn, waved to the guy.
"Mamaya na yan. Order muna tayo," Dookie said curtly.
I ended up ordering several dimsum and my fave, the hofan noodles.
Dookie ordered their white chicken asado and a big bowl of congee. Yung congee bowl nila, kasing laki yata ng ulo ko.
She-ra ordered white milk tea lang.
"Wala kang oorderin na iba?" I asked him.
She-ra shook his head, still staring at Marcus next to us, "Drink lang. May ulam na ako eh."
I snorted and Dookie just laughed. Pambihira talaga ang kakati-han nitong bilat na ito.
The food arrived and it was just as good as I remembered it. In fact, Dookie even ordered several more packs of dimsum which he said we would eat sa place niya.
She-ra was still making eyes at the asian guy, whilst sipping his tea.
"Busog ka na ba?" I asked him.
"Malapit na," She-ra replied.
Bilib rin naman ako doon sa guy. Hindi man lang nailang sa pag-stare sa kaniya ni She-ra. Eh mahigit thirty minutes na siyang pinagmamasdan. Sanay na siguro. Or baka naman straight. Or di niya lang type si She-ra.
But then, the answer walked through the resto door. Another cute hunky asian guy.
He went straight for Marcus's table and greeted him, "Sorry ngayon lang ako. Ang traffic eh."
Then he gave Marcus a peck on the cheek.
"Aaaaaaay puñeta!" ang sigaw ni She-ra.
"Huuuuy, wag kang sumigaw!" ang sigaw ko naman kay She-ra.
Dookie was so ashamed at our mutual outbursts that he just unfolded the newspaper he had and hid his face behind it.
The two asian cuties looked at us and Marcus said something which we couldn't hear. The other cutie just nodded and smiled. Marcus stood up and waved at us.
Sabay labas nung dalawa.
Tahimik kaming tatlo sa lamesa.
Dumating na yung takeout ni Dookie.
Lumabas na rin kami.
Tahimik pa rin.
And then She-ra said, "Simba tayo uli."
The three of us just looked at each other, and then burst out laughing, as we strolled along Binondo, the night cloaking everything in surreal darkness.