I continue to be amazed at how promptly and strongly this particular prayer I learned from JH back in March 2010 continues to work.
I was particularly amazed on Friday night when TES and I were driving to Rokaro in Petaling Jaya, opposite the PJ Hilton to check out her Mark, singing teacher’s nite work at the pub-restaurant owned by Roland who specialises in Cantonese and Elvis songs. Mark does some of the oldies and the trendies while a young slim girl does the rest.
(I was up to Kuala Lumpur for a couple of days and, as usual, made TES’ home my freebie hotel).
TES fretted that being Fri-nite the parking situation would be bad and it was. Every possible nook and cranny were taken and there were still cars streaming in behind us as well as in front of us, plus left and right, seemingly coming from all directions.
Moreover, most people seemed to have the same idea as us: we wanted to find a lot that’s in the open and fairly brightly lit streets, not the dark side alleys, as we were in Malaysia where not so low crime guarantees there would be crime if we ain’t alert.
We couldn’t give up as we were meeting friends at Rokaro. Moreover, TES isn’t the throw-in-the-towel type! Worse, she hoped, wanted, to park right outside Rokaro.
In desperation, I said the parking lot prayer. Not said it mentally. Uttered it aloud. Much to TES amazement. But to her greater amazement, the parked car on our left we were about to cruise by actually started up its engine and was about to move out!
Natch, TES stopped. And took the spot as soon as it was vacated, much to the changrin and envy of the cars behind us. We were exactly outside Rpkaro. Spooky eh?
Oh sure, the likes of Nassim Nicholas Taleb would call it random serendipity. I would like to think it’s the power of prayer, this particular prayer: Hail Mary, full of grace; help me find a parking space.
Now a little about Rokaro: it’s like something you would find in Boat Quay, Clarke Quay or even Joo Chiat. Life singers; a smidgeon of a dance floor, food that ranges from finger to full course set meals or a la carte and the usual alcoholic suspects for drinks. Some items were pretty pricey– like a Tiger draft in a beer mug for RM20.90 had by JT (one of the friends we met up with). But Rokaro must surely serve the cheapest pub satay, at RM12 for a dozen
As for the atmosphere, Rokaro’s patrons ranged from office colleagues having a night out, to family outings with grandma in tow. In fact, at a nearby table sat a couple who looked as tho they were minding their grand-kid; with the grandparents taking to the floor in turn with partners from other tables!
Many were clearly regulars or popped by because they know someone who works there, like TES does occasionally to give her singing teacher support!
But the best part is the provenance of Rokaro: it’s named after its owner Roland, who had orginally set up as a karaoke lounge. Because he enjoyed singing, he morphed the set-up into what it is today. He gets to have a hobby he loves and makes money from it some more! Now that’s one business model to embrace, n’est pas?
Below are some pix taken at Rokaro, plus one of the restaurant’s exterior (above) ripped off its website. Poor Roland was arrowed by me into singing 一水隔天涯 in Cantonese which he did, tho I couldn’t make out much of it.
When I confronted him about it during his break, he said “It’s a cha-cha”, to which I replied, “that’s the music but the words were mostly different from what I remember”, to which he gave me a sheepish smile.
Now I’m left to wonder if there is a comic version of 一水隔天涯?