Yesterday, while I was baking and decorating this cake for my youngest grandson, it brought to my mind how time had fleetingly flown by. It was just a year ago, after baking a Mr Men cake for my grandson, I was admitted into hospital. The baking had nothing to do with the cause.
A few days before my grandson's birthday in 2009, I experienced the worst headache of my life. It came so swiftly and the pain was so excruciating that tears streamed down my face uncontrollably. It happened at night and I went to a clinic nearby. The doctor referred me to CGH. There the young medical officer made me do some tests to ascertain whether it was stroke. Later he termed my problem as in his exact words, "Auntie, you have tension headache!" Ok, you're the doctor, you know better. With that, he gave me a jab, some panadol and sent me home.
Within the next ten days, I experienced three more attacks, consulted another doctor whose prognosis was the same. The third doctor, I saw, felt that I ought to have a scan done. The result was alarming. My brain was bleeding. A blood vessel had popped. The medical term was subarachnoid haemorrhage.
For the first time in my life, I rode in an ambulance from CGH to SGH. CGH referred me to a neurology specialist in SGH. I was placed in an ICA ward, confined to the bed. I went through more scans. All that while, I was as normal as before except for the headaches.
During those few days, I was in despair. I turned to God and prayed fervently for healing. I'd never prayed so hard and so much in my entire life. God is merciful and full of grace. I felt at peace then.
The results of all the scans showed that the bleeding had stopped. Alleluia! God be praised!
It was yesterday, my youngest grandson turned two. His current favourite toys are trains which he calls them 'choo-choo'.
Naturally I baked him a train cake. Time and weather weren't on my side when I began to bake and decorate after lunch. By the time the cake cooled, I had about three and a half hours to complete the cake before the arrival of my daughter's family for a simple birthday celebration dinner.
I used marshmallow fondant which I had prepared some time ago and refrigerated. (I don't like using store-bought fondant as it has a 'plasticy' kind of smell.)
The cake base was vanilla butter cake and the cylindrical shape was a chocolate swiss roll.
At 2.30 p.m, I began my task of cutting and kneading the fondant to cover the various shape. The tough part was trying to cover the parts with fondant. After crumb-coating the cake , I should have cool the cake to set the cream. Due to time constraint, I attempted wrapping it immediately. The creamed cake parts were difficult to handle, the cream got to my hands, the rolled fondant got messed-up! Ugrh!! The weather was hot and the buttercream began to turn runny!
Finally by 6 p.m, the cake was completed. The finishing wasn't as refined as I wanted it. But I consoled myself that it did look like a toy train.