Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Myth No More (Homestay Parenting experiences)

No milk for me, please!
Why?
I'm lactose intolerant, that's why.

I've had several Chinese co-teachers who would tell me they were lactose intolerant and thus could not eat anything with milk or milk products.  So, my fear of offering milk and milk products to them, and to Chinese in general,  is ingrained in my brain.
   When we got our first 2 Chinese girls, my dilemma was what beverage to serve them for breakfast.  Was hubby and I more than surprised when they told us they would drink milk for breakfast!
   Back in my youth, we were told not to pair milk with anything acidic like orange juice or apple juice. Nah!  They drank both in one meal and to our surprise  nothing happened!   So, I bid bye-bye  to that milk-intolerance myth.

   For the first time after three weeks,  we were assigned to look after two male students.  They were seventeen and eighteen years old.  One was tall and lanky and always had a ready smile. The other was shorter and more serious looking, but very amiable, nonetheless.  They both spoke good English so communication was less of a problem.  They came from a totally new province - actually this is the first time I've heard of it - Zhejiang.  Unlike the girls who were all out in spending their dollars for their parents, these two were more cautious with their allowance. The bag that Nestor (the lanky one) bought for his mom could not compare, price wise, with the bag that one of the girls bought!  But for our consolation -- they were less picky with their food.
   Last Saturday, we treated a family friend to a birthday lunch. Together with two other family friends, we decided to go to a new seafood buffet in Glendale.  We took the boys along since they had no trip planned for that day. They tried most of the dishes and told us they had a great time.  Since we were very close to the galleria, we asked them if they would want to shop.  No.  So we went home.  So unlike the girls lol!
   Because they were so full from lunch, and the weather was so hot,  they slept through the trip.  Later, one of them  told us that their parents encourage them to sleep while travelling so they will be invigorated when they come out of the car. So, that is why the girls also fell asleep every time  they got into the car!  All the while hubby and I thought it was because they were watching TV so late into the night!  Now I know.

   BTW, before lunch  we, together with  another homestay couple and their two girl students, took the kids to Griffith Observatory, Bunker Hill, to see and experience the Angels Flight where they bought souvenir coins from a machine, and then admired the awesome Disney concert hall.   And yes, we all  took pictures!
I also observed that our boys and their girls didn't talk.  When introduced, they just smiled at one another, and that was it.  Interesting!

   Yesterday morning, I took them to school for the last time.  They were bound for the East Coast right after their afternoon classes.  Hubby and I will miss them.  They said they will miss us. too.  Hubby said his goodbyes the night before.  I had my chance to give them a last hug.  They hugged me back.

   When I got back home I went straight to their room.  WOW, it was so clean and the bed was neatly done, better than the..... oh, you should get it by now (chuckle)!  Suddenly sadness engulfed me.

Was I sad because I  miss them, or because I miss my own sons!