YET ANOTHER FREE DINNER
March 17, 2010. It’s 10:30PM and I just reached home quite tired but with a smile. Just as I was about to leave the office for home, I got a last-minute invitation this afternoon from my colleague to have a dinner with him and his family at his place. It was unplanned indeed but I have nothing to do so I accepted it. Thus, I went with him to his home almost 2 kilometers away from our office for a family dinner.
For many days now, I had lonely dinners all by myself except when I was in a project site with colleagues and last Sunday when I had another dinner invitation from another colleague named Jan. So occasions like these are really precious for me. Not all people will get to invite me at their home so getting one is really special to me.
I am happy to accept invitations like this not because I wanted to eat better home-cooked meals but because this is the only time that I get to feel that I am home indeed where I can talk with real people not just about work but about anything under the sun.
Luckily, I still have some invitations from Eli, Niels and Britta and one I took recently from Jan. Just tonight, I felt so happy feeling as if I was at home. It’s good that I have taken Per’s invite!
So who is Per? Per is one of the employees who have stayed quite long with the company where we both work for. He has been in the industry for quite some time now and like me, he is also a techno-geek. He is simple and hard-working. Currently, we are doing the same project so we get the share the same challenges and opinions on how to make things happen.
Per and I get to talk more about work and about our personal thoughts so we both are comfortable at sharing ideas. He works almost the same as how I work with passion and dedication. Thus, I trust him. Today, I was able to talk with his wife who owns a daycare center at home. She is simple and as friendly as my colleague too.
She loves painting furniture and checking websites or blogs about furniture and home fixtures. She loves gardening as well especially with flowers. She even showed me what sites she usually checks online. She’s simple and nice. Suddenly, I started missing my wife and how she wanted to just have a daycare and take care of kids.
I got a bottle of beer from Per and he started putting woods to fire his chimney for warmth. I showed his wife my blog and soon my colleague went to the kitchen to cook dinner for us. I was told that he is a better cook of house if only he has more time. Per’s family is simple and typical yet they seem to be happy and close together.
So we started dining. We had chicken, vegetable and potato mixed with Jerusalem Artichoke. It was a simple meal yet healthy and well-prepared. I could taste their hospitality indeed! While eating, we all started talking about kids, life, parties and culture. The conversation was so lively as if I was at home.
I opened the conversation by talking about the molecular biology and biotechnology expert in their country who is trying to recreate life and how it all began by engineering a cell from scratch. I know that his daughter wanted to be a doctor so I had to make the topic interesting to get her into the discussion. We then talk about teenage life.
We were like in a comedy bar as I started sharing real-life experiences. I know that I can always look funny being the usual clown but I had to make sure that I am able to inject good lessons to learn be especially for Per’s daughter who just turned 18. I had to tell her that while enjoying life, we need to fulfill our responsibilities too.
I was there for almost 4 hours. We all talked a lot and we even ended up laughing about usual blunders like farting in public or pretending look stupid and sick so you won’t get bullied and how I almost ate Bugs Bunny for dinner because the menu was not in English. It was a night that really made me feel like family though I am away from my own.
All in all, it was a night to remember! I felt very much at home and I should thank Per and his family for the dinner and lively chat. Although his son arrived quite late, I am sure he would have enjoyed the same conversation. Anyway, I have to visit them again one of these days so I could cook them dinner as well – Adobo, Menudo and Nilaga!