Once upon a time, my friend Teona told me one thing, “You’re just like my brother. Love sweet. But avoid it anyway because you both know sweet is not good. But you love sweet…”
“Really?” I was disbelief. She smiled. She knew how I was so excited when was taking me to a French café in Yangon, and it was not that difficult to define if someone really loves something by only looking at her/his face and expression. Including me and sweets.
Then I started to recall things….
For God sake, I had sweet tooth. This is long before I realized that “sweet” was really bad for me. All I knew, sweet is just so good as savory and greasy foods. I loved bitter foods too. Let’s say, coffee and dark chocolate. Anyway, it’s really difficult to say what kind of food I like best. I love food! I loved coffee. I loved fried foods. I loved cakes, sweet breads, cookies, and drinks (but I dislike candies). I love desserts. I remember myself in a top of a hostel in Singapore slurping a pack of Teh Botol Sosro. I knew it’s so delicious to be enjoyed in a special moment (apapun makanannya, minumannya Teh Botol Sosro.. that’s how its ad says). Then I would also slip a few packs of it inside my fridge and enjoyed them during hot nights. I was also a fan of sparkling wine! I would keep in the fridge, drank it cold, straight from the bottle while listening to Joni Mitchell’s (ah, nikmat apa yang kau dustakan?!).
Then I realized, sweet will do no good (if you’re taking too much), as well as greasy and salty food. I began to avoid it. No more sweets. So, I started to reduce or even ban sweets from my life. I no longer drink sweet packed tea. I no longer put sugar on my drinks. I avoid desserts like cakes or sweet breads. I no longer eat ice cream. I started to examine myself whenever I eat or drink something excessively sweet. I started feeling nausea, and some energy roller coaster – energy crash. I don’t feel right. This happened in Pontianak a month ago. I was fasting all day. During the break with some friends in a fine hotel in Pontianak, I decided to drink es dawet. It’s been a while I didn’t drink it. I’d thought it would alright because I’d had warm water to break my fast. Then, I started to drink my cendol. It’s all good. Sweet and savory taste. The sweet from the brown sugar, and the savory from the coconut milk. Done with half glass of cendol, I started to eat the meal. Well, I did not need to wait for hours for the reaction. In less than 20 minutes, I started to feel really sleepy. Yep, I had sugar crash. I dragged myself leaving the hotel, asked my friend to drop me off in my hotel. Could not hold my head, I straight went to bed. Zzzzzz
Also, I remember one time in St. Louis how I really wanted to eat Whole Foods’ blueberry pie. One time, I bought only one piece. But I really loved it and one piece was not enough. The next trip to Whole Foods, I bought one pan of blueberry pie and ate all of them (my roommie did not like sweet). I felt so happy and (not so good). Hahaha. For your information, Ben and Jerry was my favorite. I always had BenJer in my freezer. During the hot summer, I would mix BenJer with various fruits like mango, avocado, and strawberry.
Because of “no sweet” to make life sweeter, I once did a challenge a month without sugar in any form. I did it pretty well. But once is enough. It would be a little bit challenging to do that in Indonesia especially when I’m traveling. I decided to do it in moderation (it’s hard to define moderation). But to be honest, I sometime still have that sweet pang – the desire to eat lava cake, pancake, waffle, or terang bulan. I still have that feeling. The feeling of wanting something sweet.