I Miss Sweet Potatoes

Reaching over, the parents handed steaming hot, half peeled sweet potatoes to their children. One for each.  Their kids, actually, growing teenagers, grabbed the sweet potatoes with huge smiles and bit into them, steam hitting their faces.

“Wah! I really miss sweet potatoes!” I declared, watching that TV scene. It reminded me so much of my family. “Did you ever eat sweet potatoes with your parents growing up?” I nudged my husband.

“Huh? No,” he continued reading. He didn’t bother looking up from his book, sitting beside me as I watched a Kdrama.

“Ahhh… but I love sweet potatoes,” I sighed.

Growing up, Continue reading

We Don’t Say “I Love You”

IMG_7560Some nights waves of nostalgia hit me.  I’ve been thinking about food and the meaning of food quite a bit lately, and it reminded me of an old blog post I wrote, 4 years ago…
March 15, 2012

Scooping out the rice from the rice cooker, the fresh jasmine aroma overwhelmed me with memories of my family…

~ ~ ~

“What did you eat today, koun (daughter)?” Mak asked over the phone.   Continue reading

Seven Day Fight

the few resources we had. cambodia, 2010.

all we had. cambodia, 2010.

At first, I didn’t see her.  She was her husband’s shadow, following him closely from behind.

His chest heaved, and his neck muscles retracted, as he fought for air.

Please help my husband, her eyes pleaded. She fidgeted beside his bed.

His skin pale, his lips faded to a blue grey. “ហត់ចង់ងប់ (I’m so tired, I could die),” he panted.

We were losing time.  Continue reading

To Spend Christmas Alone

IMG_5109

a giant wooden bear. Harajaku, Tokyo.

It’s not so bad, you just need a plan:

1) Start a few weeks early, mailing out cards and gifts in advance. (Just because you can’t be with your friends and family on Christmas Day doesn’t mean you don’t send your season’s greetings.)

2) Go grocery shopping before Christmas Day, because on the day of, the stores will be closed and you’ll be left hungry. Since you’ll be alone, there ain’t no one to cook for you but yourself. (And if you don’t know how to cook, maybe it’s a good time to start learning..)

On Monday and Tuesday I had to work as usual. It was a cold and rainy evening commute. Without an umbrella, I couldn’t walk to the full service grocery store (aka ‘Whole Paycheck’) so I walked to a nearby store and picked up ham, green beans, and mashed potatoes. Unfortunately they didn’t have real potatoes or fresh green beans so I was obligated to buy boxed potatoes and prewashed green beans. Don’t judge. =P  

3) All the love you would have given to your friends and family- give to your neighbors and those around you instead. 

The reason why I couldn’t spend Christmas with my family is because Continue reading

Versatile Blogger Award / Dona Nobis Pacem

Last week’s tumultuous weather really dragged me down… (winter storm from last week? watch for the upcoming blog post on it!) Is there such thing as emotional jet lag? Cuz since I returned from Asia, I have been jumping through one hurdle after another…

So I interrupt all this funk to share my excitement in being nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award! I’m a former xangan for over a decade so certainly not new to the blogging community.. but after migrating to WP I definitely felt like a small fish in a giant pond. This award reminds me that perhaps we are more connected than we think.. =)

A big thank you to HongKongFong for the nomination. She’s a talented photographer and blogger who captures the beauty in the everyday –  in her life and all the colors, cultures, and cuisines that compose Hong Kong. (She’s also a fellow oboist! YEA oboes!)

7 random things about myself… Continue reading