A Visit From Big Sister

Sushi with Misun

Misun, aka my big sister, visited from France yesterday. We gorged ourselves on all-you-can-eat sushi, and I let her surprise me by choosing not to know what she ordered for us. Now I wish I had kept note so I could order the same things again.

Sushi with me

It was hard to argue with her about the bill. She kept insisting that she pay because she’s older (from her Korean culture), and I kept insisting that I pay because I’m the host (from my Chinese culture). I even used the argument that if it’s the elder who pays, then she would always be paying. Unfortunately, the hostess took her side and refused my money.

She was only able to stay in Ottawa for the night, but before turning in well beyond our bedtimes, we caught up as people can only do in person. We’d been keeping in touch the whole time we’ve been apart, and now had the chance to fill in the details.

The time I most felt like I knew what it was to have a sister was when we brushed our teeth together in the bathroom. Afterward, we compared grey hair, me laughing at her three strands, as I have a steady diet of salt added to my pepper.

Misun's note

When I woke up, I found this cute note, with our faces (including Dolly’s) drawn on it.


  1. Aw, I miss having a “sister.” Mine lives in LA and I moved away from So Cal to Detroit for my soul mate, so she and I never see each other. She managed to miss my wedding. :(

    THat is the cutest note ever. I’m so glad you’re surrounded by people like that.

    And look how cheesy happy you guys are!

    I agree with you as the host, you should pay. I don’t think that’s only a Chinese cultural hallmark. Pilipinos are the same way. But generally they will feed the shit out of you the moment you cross the threshold, so there is probably not many instances where an argument ensues over a restaurant bill, because there would be no need to go out for food! :)

    • Cheesy happy is good. I need more cheesy happy in my photos.

      And feeding the shit out of someone is such a hilarious image!

  2. You look like you’ve put on some weight…more meat on the cheeks, more manly and mature.

    • I know that I’ve kept the weight that I gained when in Hong Kong, but I didn’t know that I gained more. That’s a good thing. I think the manliness comes from the sweater though. People tell me it makes me look a lot bigger. I need more sweaters like that.

  3. Trust me, Koreans tend to argue you into the ground on the subject of age hierarchy. But: in this case my husband suggested that the “host” card should have won out. He thinks probably it would have been fine for her to let you pay.

    • Hmmm…now I’m beginning to suspect that she was really just using the age card as an excuse to pay. I must remember this for the next time we’re out.

  4. the little drawing she did of you actually kind of resembles you! hahaha cute.

    • I didn’t realize the drawings were of us actually, until I saw the cat. Then it clicked right in!

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