It was Valentine's Day, but, sadly, much of the romance was spoilt by the "service that others talk about" as the Tongs flew SQ biz class to Hong Kong to celebrate their anniversary.
Madam Thng Poh Choo, the wife, was upset by the way her bread roll was served. And KC, her hubby, was not thrilled when he bit into his cereal.
Poh Choo, who knows a thing or two about quality service, having been a stewardess herself in SQ's first-class cabins many, many years ago, decided she should email me to give her feedback.
She says: "Small a complaint it may be, (but) it is certainly something for the crew to think about.
"When a passenger decides to forgo her main course and asks for a bread roll....mind you, this roll is now my main course.....the crew serving this bread roll must have some PRIDE in wanting to present the bread roll warm."
Unfortunately, it came to her cold. And when she requested for it to be warmed up, "it came back to me in a hot, soft and puff-like nature..."
She was elated and thought to herself: "Well done, crew! Hot bread roll!"
But her joy was short-lived. She says: "In less than a minute (seems like a minute...I cannot be accurate here) after tearing up the roll into pieces, I could feel the roll hardening up.... making it not so good to eat.
"Was it microwaved? I asked the Chief Steward.
"He said, "we do not have a microwave on board".
"What the Chief Steward could have done was to stop for 30 seconds and asked me if there was anything wrong with my roll....
"In the case of my husband, besides having to eat his overly-drenched and soggy cereal, he had to call for a clean spoon when he was served the main course -- chicken congee.
"It is not Economy class service we expect in Business Class!! Attention to such details seems lacking today (February 14)."
Calling on SQ to "kindly re-train these girls", she adds a pointer on how to prepare cereal: "They should not pour the milk into the cereal too early. Cereal should be eaten with a crunch even if it is taken with milk. The trick is to serve the cereal with the milk poured in at the very last moment...it is not difficult to serve this simple dish."
The Tongs, however, had a pleasant surprise when the crew brought out an anniversary cake for them just before landing, but Poh Choo could not help but wonder: "How am I supposed to enjoy this cake? Take-away? It was quite funny!"
As a former Singapore Girl, she says she understands that "the crew want to work fast" but she qualifies that by adding: "They must not compromise on quality."