Wednesday, December 3, 2008

cultural blending

this morning i had a meeting with mr french boss boss and as usual, it was fairly intense. it makes sense. we are intense people.... so hence, the meetings are intense. how could they not be? the opportunity to be around and work with intense and smart people is definitely one of the perks of the job. yet, sometimes after certain discussions....it is good to take a break and process a bit.

as i mentioned before, the trip to hong kong definitely extracted its emotional tithe from me. it isn't a trip i enjoy revisiting. yet, i understand that in order to positively impact the business, i do what i have to do....and as i expected, my analysis will be disseminated further.

after the meeting was over, i decided that it would be a good time to make some lunch. as hong kong was on my mind, i decided to make a dish inspired by the hong kong visit. during my visit to hong kong i had the opportunity to eat one of the popular macau restaurants a couple of times. some of the folks in the hong kong office indicated that a soup with luncheon meat (aka spam), a fried egg, and noodles is eaten quite a bit in hong kong for breakfast. i didn't try it at the time, but i have made it a couple of times since i have returned from hong kong.

as i was looking for something warm and comforting....as well as having hong kong on the brain...i thought it appropriate that i make this soup today. in hong kong, i didn't see any "green" floating around in the soup...but alas, i decided that i was going to add some arugula i had one hand as well as some mendocino grown shiitake mushrooms. i also grabbed a ball of dried noodles and put it aside.


while i set a pot of chicken broth (i.e., water and better than bouillon), nuoc mam, and chili flakes to boil....i also set about to fry up an egg and two slices of spam....


once the broth was bubbling, i added the dried noodles....stirred for a bit.....then added the mushrooms and arugula. once the noodles were softened in the broth mixture.....i scooped everything into a large bowl and slid the egg and spam on top.

it is quite an interesting mix of east and west isn't it? spam is quite a legendary american product....yet, it is interesting how american products have become integrated into other countries. i not only saw this in hong kong...but i have also seen this in merida and (gasp!) paris as well. it is also a reminder to me regarding the adaptability of human experience.....that things do not have to be either/or....that it is possible to have successful blended cultural experiences.

as i dug into my soup, one of mr. french boss boss' comments from the meeting kept echoing in my mind
"you see things that other people do not". yet, it also appears that seeing things also comes with difficult choices and a certain level of personal responsibility.

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