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Feeling like the mad hatter in Alice in Wonderland

I read Alice in Wonderland when I was a kid. The image of the mad hatter who was late for the tea party by the queen stays on in my mind.

‘I am late! I am late!’

That’s how I feel on most days. I usually am never late. I always am punctual unless the circumstances are beyond my control.

Just now, at midnight, I have to make a decision with my #1 son whether to go to KL to settle some college matters with a consultant there. Initially, my little boy wanted to attend school and wasn’t keen on being ‘taken off from school’. But he changed his mind and was in tears when I told him we are not going and he is going to school.

So, here is one teary eyed kid, an appointment that I haven’t manage to confirm, a free ride to KL and decision to be made.

I have been in contact with the guy through emails but there is nothing like a personal discussion to settle the matter. You see, my son is supposed to start his industrial training in six months time. He has to arrange which restaurant to attach to.

His college is not making any arrangements for them. So, I contacted the agent who usually arrange our Malaysian professional chef diploma students for placements in overseas. He gave me all the details, costs and benefits of getting the industrial training done in Germany.

I am not keen to send my son to USA. Due to the cost and also none of his college mates are keen. Germany sounds like a good location and quite affordable. Australia is not accepting Malaysians (sigh). French foods are not so ‘popular’.

So, we are traveling to meet the agent, and hopefully get things straightened out. They need six months to get the paperworks done. You know what? Local hotels are available but I doubt how much the sifus there are willing to impart their knowledge. Moreover working in a large hotel probably limits the kind of things they do. So, we think, why not send the son for a nice holiday, a new world to explore and frankly, they are paid in Euros and the amount they get in return is enough to let him experience European restaurant management and cuisine.

Now I need to pack! I am late, I am late!




5 Responses to “Feeling like the mad hatter in Alice in Wonderland”

  1. Yup, local hotels is not a good choice. If you can afford to send him oversea, it will be a good one. Here the sifu look gaya but inside………………. most of them are kosong.

  2. As Erina Law say (above), if you can afford it, send him overseas, but Germany? Have you considered the language that they will be speaking in the Kitchen. As a Former Hotel School Student in Switzerland, I know, having undergoing training in various Hotels in Switzerland (even with basic french and german language class) and have some difficulty with the language and communication as some of the chefs and their workers do not speak english at all.

    Placement in a Small Establishment is good , in the sense that you can learn more but of one particular type of cuisine. In a large establishment you may have a chance to learn more types of cuisines, but you will be more restricted in what you can actually do and be train on. The Sifus there also can be quite selfish.

    Having Said that, Frankly it boils down to the attitude of the trainee it self, If you really want to learn, you will learn, even if they ask you to peal potatoes for 6 months, You still can learn by looking and comming back on your off days and working longer hours than what you have to work.

    Good luck to your son, I hope he will end up in a establishment where he can really learn.

  3. Send him to Jamie Oliver’s restaurant.

  4. I regreted taking things for granted and my son miss his chance of overseas industrial training. Somemore he works for free during his training. Even after graduation, chefs are lowly paid in hotels here.

  5. That sounds like a great “YAY!”. I support your decision to send him to Germany for industrial training. I wish him all the best and enjoy preparing for the trip. 🙂