The aroma of the braised duck could be smelt from “miles away”, leaving one salivating. The duck meat was extremely tender and the “special” sauce was simply tasty and delicious. That was the famous Ye’s family braised duck that everyone in this town, Zherong knew and patronised regularly.
Zherong is a county of Fujian province with a population of about hundred thousand people. It is located near Xiamen City. Though it is not as developed and vibrant as the metropolitan Xiamen City, this small town does have all the basic infrastructures and amenities like Xiamen, albeit they are not so modern. There are not many high rise buildings and the tallest building is only ten storey high. The air environment in Zherong is much better than major cities and the residents there lead a less hectic and healthier life.
The owner of Ye’s family braised duck was a bespectacled middle-sized lady in her late thirties named Yue Ling. She was an extremely cheerful lady whom enjoyed cooking, serving and socialising. No wonder, all her customers liked her.
“A plate of braised duck rice please!” Mrs Chiang, Yue Ling’s “mah-jong” friend chirped.
“Hey! Mah-jong tonight? Business is not so good today. I am going to close shop early,” Yue Ling exclaimed, while preparing the delicacy.
“No, I need to pack my bag! My whole family is moving to Chengdu, the megacity! We will be staying in a 40 storey high-rise building!”
“What? Why is everyone moving to megacities? What’s so good about it? How my business is going to survive when more and more folks are going away. More sadly, I’m losing my “mah-jong” friend!” Yue Ling interrupted.
“For greener pasture! You should consider moving too. Megacities are always better,” Mrs Chiang retorted, before stomping away.
Yue Ling’s thoughts flew to her late husband. He left this world in 2038, when she was about 8 months pregnant with her daughter, Xiao Hong. This braised duck stall was his everything. He had put in so much effort to start up this...