We don’t usually have visitors to our home. So when an old friend of the Pops had come for a visit with his wife one day, we were pretty surprised about it. Normally, I’m not a fan of visitors to our home. Mainly, because our home is usually an embarrassing mess. But also because the fam and I are not an “entertaining” bunch. Too many awkward silent moments during visitor’s conversation times in the past.
But for this particular day, the Pops’ old friend and his wife’s visit had become a day of big relief for me. Because finally, I had real macoy eye witnesses as to the ways of our infamous Aunt K, who had arrived through our home’s front door unexpectedly once again, several minutes prior to their arrival.
Because we had visitors, the Mom and I began to prepare some beverages and fruit to peel for them to drink and eat.
In regards to having fruit in our home, if we didn’t have to buy them, we wouldn’t. Not because we don’t like fruits, but just because they’re too expensive for us to add onto our grocery list. The reason we have to buy some fruits to have available in our refrigerator is because the Pops is so very picky when it comes to eating his meals, but is not as picky when it comes to eating fruits. So the Mom and I have to dish out our dough at the grocery store, to make sure that we always buy enough fruits to feed the Pops with, in case he refuses to eat the meals that we prepare for him.
With a heavy heart, the Mom and I pulled out the bag of persimmons that we had in our refrigerator, for the guests to eat. Persimmons are the Pops’ favorite. And because they’re only available for sale during certain times in the year (during the winter months), we always make sure to buy quickly them in bulk, as soon as they’re in season again.
Everyone sat on our livingroom floor. Because the Pops can’t talk anymore (since his first stroke), the Mom always has to talk for the both of ’em, trying to keep our home’s visitors as unbored as possible.
The Mom had washed and placed the persimmons on a serving tray, and began peeling them as quickly as she could, as she talked about this and that with the Pops’ friend and wife.
Many folks aren’t aware of Aunt K’s existence, and would ask us if she was really his “real sister” when they’d meet her. If they’re asking me, then I’d answer, “Yeah” – and can’t help but make a forlorn face, as I answer them. But because this couple had already known who she was, no introductions was needed. Most likely, they had heard about her from the local Korean community grapevine.
Aunt K sat on the floor right next to the Mom, appearing to be impatient as to the Mom’s careful peeling method. The couple were sitting beside Aunt K.
Normally, I stayed in the bedroom whenever the parents’ friends came over because I’d just about always get harrassed by them (whether they were male or female, or by both, if a couple showed up) as to why I’m not married yet. But because this particular couple didn’t ever give me that usual shpeel (probably because they too had 2 grown children who weren’t married also), I stayed sitting in our livingroom floor along with them.
As the Mom peeled the persimmons and spoke, Aunt K suddenly interrupted her. “Why are you cutting the persimmons like that?! That’s not the way you cut persimmons!”, she yelled.
Then she took the knife from the Mom and the picked up the persimmon that she was in the middle of cutting into pieces. Aunt K chopped off a big piece of one end and did the same to another piece. “See! You’re supposed to cut them like this! Aye, you don’t even know how to cut persimmons!”, she said. Then she took a bite out of the one that she had just chopped. As she chewed, she glared at the Mom with a tsk-tsk look of unapproval to her fruit peeling standards.
The Mom sat in silence as she served the other peeled persimmons to the couple. As the couple began to also eat, the husband then turned to Aunt K and said, “Why do you have to have such an angry facial expression?” Aunt K looked at him, surprised. But continued to chomp on another persimmon without say anything to him in answer. Oy, I’m sure the dude was now on her hit list of hated people.
Once again, Aunt K had barged into our home uninvited. And once again, she had come to our home to eat. But this time, her rude bombarding manner had been witnessed by others who are non-family members. It really is quite odd how such a comment by a visitor could become such a relief for me to hear.