Wednesday, August 25, 2010
This weekend I had my first taste of Indian food. Even better – it was home cooking! This was certainly an experience I didn’t anticipate coming to Korea. But, the expat community here is diverse. So yes, this was the first meal I have ever shared with Indians, Koreans, South Africans and Americans. And, it was fantastic…the food and especially the conversation.
I’m impressed by some people’s ability to find community. At a church I’ve just started to attend, a new family has arrived. Their second week here – they were inviting perfect strangers into their home for lunch. Did we like Indian food? Well…we would find out that yes, both my husband and I like Indian food and homemade Chai tea.
I continue to discover that people from all over the world are the same in so many ways. We all want community and friendship. We all know this can be found by sharing a meal together. We all love to laugh and share a joke. And, we are all curious about each other.
Navam and his wife Joyti were happy to share bits of their culture with us, and it was all an education for me. It was also interesting to hear our perceptions about each other. I’ll just examine one for a moment. To hear from them, that Americans are perceived as very prim and proper was certainly a surprise. In contrast, they described themselves as very informal. In some ways I can now understand that perception. These new friends were inviting us all over any time…stay the night…take a bubble bath in their luxurious tub…eat their food…stop by anytime. Please do, they insisted!
Now, I would love to say the same open invitation exists at my house, but the truth is I’d prefer you call first. At the same time, I’m drawn to that warmth. I envy it. Maybe I should invite some perfect strangers over. If only I could cook…