“You’re going to post another blog about San Diego? Isn’t anything exciting happening in Aura?”

Christopher and Seunghye in San Diego last weekend

I emailed Christopher yesterday to request permission to publish the above photo in this blog.  Just to make sure it was OK with him and his fiance, Seunghye.  (Not everyone is ready for their photo to be published on the Worldwide Web, you know.  Although they may be, if you reassure them that thousands of people won’t be gawking over their photos.  Just a few visitors, you say.  Don’t be shy.  Your photo looks wonderful.)

He emailed back the above response:  “You’re going to post another blog about San Diego?  Isn’t anything exciting happening in Aura?”

For those of you who don’t know, or who know and have forgotten, we live in the town of Aura.  Our mailing address is L’Anse, but we’re Aura residents, for sure.  Aura IS a dot on most Michigan maps.  It doesn’t have a post office or grocery store, but there is a fire hall and community hall.  Also a baseball field.  Years ago, it featured a post office, but that disappeared back when we were young parents who couldn’t even imagine that our offspring would one day be engaged.

The answer, dear Christopher, is Yes.  One more blog about San Diego.  Of course there are many exciting things happening in Aura!  Specifically, it’s warm.  Fifty two degrees Fahrenheit, as I write. That is 11.1 degrees celsius for you folks from South Africa and the Netherlands and New Zealand.  (Question to self:  does Canada use Fahrenheit, or are we the last worldwide standouts on the Fahrenheit system?)

Cactus Park --in San Diego's Balboa Park

It’s raining lightly here in Aura this afternoon.  I’ve been spending the entire week attempting to return to normality, whatever “”normality” might be.  Trying to catch up at home, catch up at work. 

Part of me still IS back in San Diego.  As you blog-readers can tell.  Today will be the last post from the West Coast, I promise.  (OK, unless something wakes me up in the middle of the night pertaining to San Diego.  In which case you shall hear more.  But I am thinking we’re wrapping up last week’s vacation.)

One of the many beautiful flowers in the cactus park

Some of you have requested details concerning our meeting with Seunghye’s parents. 

I am here to tell you that you will have to subscribe to the L’Anse Sentinel to read those details.  My husband has written a column describing our meeting.

Yet, for some reason, I feel shy.  Quiet.  Protective.  I don’t want to splash our special meeting across the web–especially photos, without their permission.  I don’t know that her parents would appreciate it–although they might.  I want to hold the memory of our day together very quiet for now.  I hope you won’t mind.

Cactus flower in the sky

Here’s what I can tell you.

We met at Christopher’s apartment.  We traveled in two cars to a downtown San Diego restaurant next to a marina and ate wonderful food outdoors as the sun warmed us.  Seunghye was a wonderful translator.  She made it feel easy.

Don't try to be invisible, Little Lizard. We can see you.

Afterward, we drove to Balboa Park.  Seunghye’s mother–especially–loved the cactus park.  She is a lover of plants and has many in and outside of their South Korea apartment. 

We  liked each other very much–although the language barrier was a challenge.  How do you get to know someone when you speak different languages?

Yet another cactus flower...

While Christopher and Seunghye cooked us a traditional Korean dinner back at his apartment, Seunghye figured out a way for the parents to communicate.  The four of us sat on the living room floor and played a Korean game called Yut. 

We tossed sticks up in the air (known as Yut sticks) and moved our markers (known as mals) around a small board.  Pretty soon Seunghye’s mom and I were clapping wildly–whenever anyone threw a good hand.  Seunghye’s dad corrected us when we moved our mals in the wrong spaces.  We were cooperating, working together, getting to know one another.

Without words–it is still possible to learn a lot about another person.

We had a good time.  It was a good day.  One that we will remember for the rest of our life.

Thank you, Christopher and Seunghye, for making it so special.

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
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34 Responses to “You’re going to post another blog about San Diego? Isn’t anything exciting happening in Aura?”

  1. Susan D says:

    Darn it. Forgot to pick up a paper at the store on the way home. I’ll do that soon. Interested in reading Barry’s perspective. I honor your wanting to keep quiet for now re: the meeting. Actually, I think you spoke volumes in what you did share with us. There is something sacred there, touching and personal. The photos are splendid. You are splendid. I hope you’re adjusting to being back in balmy Aura, which leads me to stating that, once again, I love your title (thanks, Christopher).

    • Kathy says:

      Hi Susan D! Guess what, I haven’t seen the paper yet either. Although I have had at least seven people around town tell me about it. That they enjoyed reading about our trip. I DID speak volumes in the shorty-cut version, didn’t I? 🙂 So what do you mean about BALMY Aura? It’s FREEZING today!!

  2. Reggie says:

    Wonderful post, Kathy, thank you for sharing a little bit about your meeting with Seunghye and her parents. Totally understand your desire to keep it quiet and tucked away into your heart, rather than ‘splashing it all over the web’. Yut sounds like a wonderful game to get to know each other without words – and Seunghye sounds like a darling!

    Seeing these photos – they remind me so much of here, Kathy. We too have plants like those growing in South Africa – oh! and thank you for giving the temperature in Celsius, I spotted that *immediately*, and almost clapped my hands, shouting “Hey, that’s us, down here! She means us!” 😉

    Gentle hugs, as you ease your heart (still partly in San Diego) slowly back into your body… go easy on yourself.

    • Kathy says:

      Reggie, so glad you enjoyed this. Don’t know why I feel so protective of our meeting… You know, I think San Diego and South Africa do have quite a bit in common. Seems like the flora and fauna are similar. Still easing on back in. Going to visit the in-laws down in Georgia at the end of April.

  3. holessence says:

    Christopher and Seunghye, thank you for letting Kathy post your photograph — you’re a beautiful couple!

  4. Sybil says:

    Lovely photo.

    Yep. Youse guys are the lone hold out.

    When I see the temperature is 45, I have a second of, holy crap that’s hot ! before I remember.

    Most of us can do the conversions as I grew up with Farenheit and then we switched over about 30 years ago.


    Nova Scota, Canada

    • Kathy says:

      Sybil, note to self. Alays give temps in Celcius, too. Always give temps in Celcius. Hey, give me a big nudge if I forget! Cheers to you!

  5. Dawn says:

    You gave us just enough information to know that they are wonderful people as are you, and that both sets of parents bless the marriage…which is a good thing. That’s all we need, to know it went well. The rest is right to be a private thing. Beautiful photo of the “kids!” And of course the flowers.

  6. Colleen says:

    Hi Kathy, isn’t it wonderful to find out that language doesn’t need to be a barrier at all. When someone is speaking in words that our ears might find unfamiliar but our heart understands perfectly. They sound like very lovely people. We were imagining what Seunghye and Chris might have cooked for you…..

    You are all very blessed 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      OK, let me try to remember what they cooked for us. First course: kimchee pancakes. YUM! Really good. A rice blend with chestnuts. And a delicious tofu seafood soup/stew. Red bean ice cream wrapped in a thin layer of mochi. YES! I want some more right now. As for language not being a barrier…sometimes I think more can be said without words. A heart-langauge sometimes starts to develop. Beyond the wordy constructs that can sometimes keep us bound.

  7. That’s wonderful that you had such a good experience meeting the future in-laws! Wasn’t it wonderful having warmer weather today? I went outside without my coat on, I loved it!!

    • Kathy says:

      Holly, do you still have warmer weather today??? (said with a slight whining intonation.) It’s fr-fr-freezing here today. Again. Guess that warmer weather was too good to last. Better not pack away our warmer coats yet!

  8. Karma says:

    Kathy, I think you told us just enough about metting the future in-laws. Sounds like a really nice time. Perhaps someday you’ll feel comfortable sharing photos (with family permission)- maybe some wedding photos!
    Enjoying higher-than-normal temps here today too – I sat out in the sunshine on my deck with my first iced coffee of the year and thought of you and your coffee on the deck!

    • Kathy says:

      It was a really nice time. Gosh, wedding photos! (You just rocked my world, thinking that there will be a day when I’ll be contemplating posting wedding photos…wow.) I am smiling thinking of you on your deck with iced coffee. Was it iced coffee you made yourself or bought somewhere? I never think to MAKE iced coffee.

  9. Marianne says:

    Ahhh, that’s so sweet. Congratulations to Christopher and Seunghye on their engagement! Lovely post, Kathy.

  10. kiwidutch says:

    Fairly much all of Europe is on the Celsius side of things too :)…and definitely metric too of course.

    PLEASE *don’t* apologise for posting “another post” about San Diego!

    For me I’m *loving* your posts about San Diego as it dawned on me “What do I actually know about San Diego apart from the fact that I heard there is a big zoo there?” and the answer with a red face was ” um, absolutely nothing!”

    Your posts are showing me my very first glimpse of a new place in the world… and that’s a privilege whenever it happens.

    Aura will keep, it will still have stories to tell after the trip is over, it can be patient too.

    Never underestimate the pleasure you are giving those of us who sit far far away to see a “new” corner of Your world 🙂

    ps: Christopher and Seunghye look very relaxed, happy, at ease and comfortable with each other… that’s the best start towards marriage of all.

    • Kathy says:

      It makes me so happy, kiwidutch, that you enjoyed the San Diego posts. Really happy! So often, when I go on vacation, the blog hits go down. Makes me wonder if people really want reports from other places. It gladdens my heart to see that you enjoyed.

      ps: I like what you said about Chris and Seunghye. Sounds wonderful! Thank you!

  11. It sounds like the meeting went really well!
    Beautiful photos, I especially like that yellow cactus flower. The cactus in the second photo almost looks like the one I have in my backyard, although it’s not as spread out as this one.

    • Kathy says:

      Mrs. Click (ha ha, sorry, I love calling you that!) you really have a cactus flower like that in your back yard? I must go check and see where you live again (sorry, have a huge tendency to forget important details.) we don’t have many cactus in the U.P. Not many at all! 🙂

  12. Cindy Lou says:

    What a lovely day to come back! Christopher and his loved one look incredibly happy in that picture! Must make a momma’s heart happy :}

    • Kathy says:

      Cindy Lou? Cindy Lou? Cindy Lou? IT’S YOU!!! I am so happy to see you again!! I don’t know what makes me happier–that you’re back–or that Christopher & Seunghye look so joyful in this picture. It’s a tie. Both of them make my heart glad!

    • Colleen says:

      I’ve missed you 🙂

  13. Carol says:

    I found the L’Anse Sentinel online, but not Barry’s article. Is it somewhere I haven’t looked? And I do like your San Diego posts – it’s been many years since I’ve been there, so it’s nice to have a refresher.

    • Kathy says:

      You’re so right, Carol, the L’Anse Sentinel is on-line, but not any of the columns. Sigh. I guess none of you will be able to read it, unless they sell it at your corner store. (smile.) I am glad you have enjoyed the San Diego posts. As I mentioned to someone else, readership seems to decline during trips, so I’m never sure if I should just shut up for awhile or continue to share for those who like it.

  14. One comment for all the San Diego blogs, fascinating! My favorites were this one and the so very touching and personal translation of the Japanese earthquake/tsunami disaster. It was a blog I wish the world could have read. Thank you for that and for being a travel guide for us stuck at home. It was like a nice preview of Spring and Summer. 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      I am glad you enjoyed them. (I especially liked writing the one after the tsunami, too, although I had to write it after returning home because there wasn’t enough time to think properly while there.) As for that preview of Spring and Summer–I’m joining you in saying “BRING IT ON!”

  15. quietpaths says:

    I love it that you had a chance to go and visit your son and bring back all these wonderful photos of flowers!! What a concept – flowers!

  16. Barbara Rodgers says:

    What a great idea Seunghye had! Games are such wonderful ice-breakers, even when people all speak the same language. I’m so happy for you that you found different ways to connect with Seunghye’s parents! I wonder if you could exchange emails with them, using the Google translator? (I’ve been having fun using it to translate some of my overseas friends’ statuses on Facebook. I can even use it to comment back to them in their language…)

    My father once told me that in Ukrainian there is a name for the relationship between the two sets of parents of a married couple. There is no word for it in English. I kind of wish there was.

    Your son and future daughter-in-law make a lovely, happy-looking couple, how delighted both sets of parents must be!

    • Kathy says:

      That was really a brilliant idea that Seunghye had, Barbara. That is a really good idea about attempting the Google translator. Wow, I have never thought of that. I am going to talk to Seunghye about it.

      Thank you!

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