July 21, 2011 § 2 Comments

The beginning seems to be bleak and 15 months passed by so quickly. Then graduation ceremony letter came with a bang. A package filled with chef coat, medal along with blue ribbon, hat, and gold cord.

Mum took a 19 hour flight from home and landed here with a 12 hour jetlag. So we ended up staying up all night catching up, drinking choyu (plum wine) and eating dark chocolate like old times.

The ceremony itself felt like a dejavu. I had participated in a graduation ceremony as a volunteer in student council and knew the plan inside out. The short cut to the hall. The list of names. The lines. The procedure. But little did I know there were still room for surprises.

First surprise: only 5 out of 12 of my classmate graduated. My best mate wasn’t there which made me disappointed. But the rest of my crew was there to walk the mile with me. A professor took a sigh and fell into reminiscing moments when she saw us walking down.

Second surprise: I had to sit in the first row with students I didn’t recognize. We wore golden cords and our names appeared in high honor list.

Third surprise: half way through the ceremony, my name along with 5 other students were call up stage. They each had a piece of paper with them. It wasn’t until the first pair of students presented an award to their favorite chef that it hit me I was to do the same. “Who? What? How?” came to my mind and butterflies flooded my stomach. It felt like milk had fermented into cheese and all the bacteria was bubbling slowly. So when it came I my turn, I kept the speech short & sweet and presented the best PM pastry chef to my favorite Chef Roberta Claire. It couldn’t be easier for she had always been there for me, everynight after plated dessert to coach me in paring flavors, plating techniques, personality as an apprentice etc. I kept her words dearly to me till today.

I grew up being told that most things (good and bad) come in three. Chinese superstitions are still a wonder till today. But the surprises did come in three and it was most pleasant.

Now, for the first time, I’m blogging through an App. Pardon me for any spelling errors or grammar. We are taking a short trip up to NYC. So far, bagels have been a daily staple, shopping is going splendid and despite the heatwave, we are still discovering new cafes to satisfy our caffeine addiction!



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