For some reason, I suspect this will be a controversial post. Here’s why:
For the uninitiated, this is a durian, the king of fruits. At least as far as I am concerned. This fruit is revered in this part of the world where I live. Singaporeans love it. Malaysians love it. Bruneians love it. Indonesians love it. Thais love it. The Chinese love it (just ask Stanley Ho). Everyone else seems to hate it. Poor fruit.
So why is something so much loved, revered, to a point of being worshiped, drawing so much flak from westerners?
Well, for one thing, it is certainly because of two things. The first of which, the durian’s smell is extremely pungent. But to us Asians, perhaps pungent is not a good way to describe it. We would probably call it fragrant. Bring a durian or two into a small room and soon that oh-so-tantalizing whiff will start to fill the air, and of course, you will be at the center of everyone’s attention.
And for the second point, depending on where you come from, some have noted that the smell of the durian is similar to that of rotten cheese. So ‘bad’ is the smell that passengers aboard Singapore’s MRT trains are forbidden from bringing these ‘vile thorny things’ along with them, owing to the fact that Singapore has a large expatriate population, which is perfectly understandable.
If you notice from the above, in this fine city of Singapore (pun definitely intended), no fine is mentioned for bringing durians aboard the train. Maybe they will just confiscate your durians.