Monthly Archives: March 2019

Merci Paris

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Merci Paris

for the blue sky and sunny weather followed by majestic sunset colours

your Marmottan Monet little wonder, an improvised and brief visit into impressionism thanks to the invitation of an art history connoisseur

coffee bathed in sunlight and served with a warm smile at Carette.

dinner in great company at Il Conte;

and the joy of Bucuria chocolate (bucuria means joy in Romanian), sent by my dearest friend through a joint acquaintance and all the warm this gesture brought from my homeland.

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“Paper Wife” by Laila Ibrahim

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I was Intrigued by the title and the period it talks about. It narrates the story of a young Chinese woman who, by a turn of events, finds herself as a wife to a man she never met and a mother to a 3 year old. The title of the novel – “paper wife” – is a metaphor for the faked “documented” relationships for Chinese eager to immigrate to the United States at the beginning of the 20th century.

The author did a great deal of research, so the reader can find out about the Angel Island Immigration Detention Center, in the middle of the San Francisco Bay. Because of the Chinese Exclusion Act, Chinese immigrants received the most scrutiny. They had to study hard the documents paid by their sponsors – husbands, uncles, brothers – who wanted to bring the dear ones to the United States. Th novel also describes the life in early China towns.

The central character is a strong feminine model who overcame difficulties and used whatever means she had to protect her family. Her believes and strong moral inheritance from her mother and grand mother are depicted with respect and admiration, owned to women who relied on their ancestral roots to let new roots of their families grow in a new land.

I found the novel a light reading, perfect for quiet evenings.

I see you

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My father said that I do not even know from which end to hold a ladle, hinting to my cooking skills (or rather their absence, in his view).

My grandmother never said anything. She always looked at me with eyes full of admiration and faith.

Today is 8 March and a part of humanity suddenly remembers to promote, cherish, congratulate women. As if they say “I see you”.  Does it make a difference? Perhaps. For flower shops in some countries it certainly does.

“I see you” everyday, day after day, is different. It requires effort and commitment.

“I see you, my talented, brave and beautiful daughter”

“I see you, mother of six, battling for your and your kids safety and sanity”

“I see you, orphan girl, struggling to find yourself into this new world”

“I see you, policewoman, holding the hand of a troubled street kid”

“I see you, single mother, fearing for your and your kid’s future”

“I see you, cleaning lady, pushing the cart on our office floor”

“I see you, human being”

This day is to me the day of those who see and help women, girls and boys, who would otherwise remain unseen on this day, or any other day.

Like this story and so many other http://www.md.undp.org/content/moldova/en/home/stories/femeia-care-viseaz-s-poat-cumpra-case-pentru-toate-supravieuitoa.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

“The Red-Haired Woman” by Orhan Pamuk

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From the first pages, I realised that I missed Pamuk’s writing.

I read “My name is Red” couple of years ago and I liked it a lot.

“The red-haired women” is both surprising and unnerving. The story is build around the father-son relationship in different generations, from mythology to the story of the main character – Cem. Cem’s relationship with his father, a well digging master and later – his own son  are painted in all the shades of guilt, regret, revolt, admiration. As if unable to cope with all these emotions, fathers and sons end up with blood on their hands. It is in essence an exploration of the evolution of the meaning of fatherhood.

The end section narrated by the red-haired woman, brightens up a bit the finale. As “The Guardian” puts is “The twist in the tail isn’t perhaps quite as effective as that in My Name Is Red, but it still makes the reader feel as if they’ve emerged from the depths of a well into sudden and dazzling light.”