Sunday, November 10, 2013

Remembering My Filipino Family



by Kathy Davis

It never occurred to me when I was a little girl that not everybody had people from all over the world as a part of their daily life. I was raised in a "global" family. Various family members were from any of the continents.




One of my uncles was Filipino/Swedish. His mother, who was Swedish, helped deliver me when I was born. My Swedish Filipino cousins were like sisters for me. I would have lengthy stays with my Filipino relatives and one of my coziest memories is of the chicken adobo wafting throughout their house. There was always a rice maker on the kitchen counter contributing to the aromas of lunch and dinner. There are fun and interesting memories of my time with my Filipino! kin. Upon entering their house we had to remove our shoes and leave them by the door.It would have been a cardinal sin to wear shoes in the home! Pork and chicken adobos,chilies and stir fried veggies were a mainstay. Everyone was very lean but I did not realize at the time that their healthy, delicious way of eating had anything to do with how lean they were.I felt joyful while staying with them for everyone wore sweet and slightly self contained smiles as they moved through their day.

My very favorite uncle for whom I was the fondest was named Uncle Gene.He was an orphan and a veteran from WW1. Bald and barely 5 ft. 2 inches, he delighted in making stinky feet toast for my cousins and me. Although the toast truly was foul smelling,it tasted delicious! Uncle Gene smiled with tolerance to our naughty giggles as we ate our stinky feet toast. He wore a smile even though his circumstances were tragic from WW1 but I could sense some sadness through his smile and kindness in spite of my having been four years old.

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To this day, when I cook adobo I feel utterly nostalgic for those days in my early childhood when the rice and adobo wafted throughout the air.Those memories make me feel at home inside of myself,no matter the kitchen in which I may be cooking at the time. 

I pray for the people in the Philippines who are suffering and those who have lost their lives in the typhoon.May their safety and healing be restored.

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