bánh xèo | sizzling and savory crepes

Today is Mom’s birthday…and she ended up in the kitchen making one of my favorite food — bánh xèo. It’s sizzling and savory Vietnamese style crepes, with pork belly and shrimps for fillings. There is a good mix of fresh green herbs and a bowl of fish-lime dipping sauce, nước mắm, that I made using fresh homegrown limes from our lime tree in the backyard.

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friend from the refugee camp

We met 27 years ago at Bataan Refugee Camp in the Philippines when both attended the same class at PASS school. I moved to Minnesota after six months and her family moved to Sacramento after nine months living in the camp.

Our teenage years were connected by sending each other hand-written letters and photos to update our lives. We first saw each other again in 1996 when I visited SF for the first time. There were many more subsequent visits after that and we never failed to have good times. When I moved to Boston we lost touch for some reason I don’t remember, but found each other again through facebook after I did a through search last year. In my personal history, she is the one Vietnamese friend that I know the longest…and still stayed connected.

Today we reunited…and it feels quite good to see her and her family. It was exhilarating to reminisce about our youth, and recovering some lost memories of how we spent our times together in the Philippines. This is my first time meeting her after being married and have kids. The last time we saw each other was in 2000, when I went a big coo-coo after a break-up and took up on the healing trip to the Bay Area.

We are now living about 90 minutes drive from each other; not bad of a distance for more frequent visit.

with our spouses…so much fun