Today I went to the old family farm that I use to hang out at when I was an annoying little kids, well I still am, just older. It was truly an amazing culinary, soothing, and nostalgic visit.
Since my grandpa’s passing, we have left the farm in the care of trusted friends who happen to be beast farmers and gardeners and their skills were evident in the abundance of flowers and fruits tree all around our court yard. They planted an additional 80 fruits trees to the existing area which I call “Fruit forest”. The whole place is now filled with apple, plum, peach, pear, and olive trees of various size and age, but all share a common trait of unexpected health and vigor.
The vegetable garden where I use to stroll through and trip all over the place remains its old flourishing self. We took fresh veggies right off the vines and stems and I proceeded directly to cooking them (yes, without washing), because there is nothing much to wash off, for they are all grown in the natural, undisturbed, uninterrupted way.
After lunch, grandma started teaching me more cuss words in her native tongue (our Xibe ethnic language) and some family history. Apparently our people use to be the head of the Manchurian 8 flag army (the one that ruled China during the Qing Dynasty for 300 yrs), for Xibe people (our ethnic people) were known for our uncanny skills on the horse and with the bow and arrow, while also being top navigator and top translators. We were original in the northeastern region of China, in Manchuria next to Korea and Siberia. But the Qing Emperor decided to sent all our family and homies to the other end of China, the Xinjiang region to defend the boarder against the last great Tzar of Russia. What a nice gesture, sending your most valuable assets to the middle of nowhere.
Then we played majong, and being terribly bored of playing 1 yuan or 5 yuan, I recommended that we boosted the price to 100 yuan and 200 yuan to create more incentive to play better. I proceeded to win 1, 800 yuan in the next hour and no one ever wanted to play with me again.