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Saturday, December 21, 2013

My memories: Milo

This is actually not my personal memory, but something that had been told to me by my aunt.

When I was around six years old, my aunt's family lived at my house for a while. One morning, my aunt found me sitting at the kitchen table by myself. She asked me if I had wanted something. I replied simply, "Milo."

Now, I had pronounced it as "mai-lo", whereas my aunt's family pronounced it as "mee-lo". Adding to that confusion, in a Chinese dialect, "mai-lo" translates to "nothing".

So my aunt thought I didn't want anything, and she went about her business. She returned to the kitchen later and found me still sitting at the table. This time, I was apparently looking at her expectantly. So she asked me again if I wanted anything, and I replied again, "Milo".

It took my aunt a while to realise that I had requested for the morning beverage! Quickly, she helped me prepare a cup of Milo.

I have no memory of this incident. Perhaps I was too young, or it didn't register as significant enough to be remembered. My aunt has only told me this story once, saying that she had a good laugh over the "loss in translation".

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