I’m remember hearing my grandma or dad hacking away at chickens when I was young, with nasty salmonella juices flying all over the place. I thank the heavens, when I had to feed myself in college, the meat came in nicely packaged trays, all plucked, skinned, and deboned. I thought then my life will always be perfectly packaged. With everything delivered to you in pretty little containers, by men in neatly dressed uniforms with properly advertised vehicles. The future is here. You never have to leave the door except for natural sun. Then why do I feel lacking not knowing how to do any of the basics?
I was lucky enough to spent a few months this year with my grandma back in rural Malaysia. We woke up before 6am every morning and tend to the gardens among other things. She had moved into a new place and already have a 3 month old garden on its way. There was already a variety of sprouting vegetables I didn’t know of. Additionally there was papayas, mangoes, lemons, dragon fruits, limes, eggplants, peppers, sweet potatoes, and so much more. It was just incredible. By the end of my stay, we had enough to eat off our own harvest. Each time I discovered a budding vegetable or fruit, it was pure delight. Like when I discovered the soft fiber-y spinach-like vegetables we have been eating are actually leaves of sweet potato root! She calls it Ubi in Malay. I mean, seriously, every misadventure was fantastical, from having to defend the crops from creepy furry munching caterpillars, to shooing birds eyeing our mango buds, to chasing away actual toads! (I still can’t fathom, for the life of me, where a toad would appear from since we are not near any water.) Each time we conquered, my grandma would look at me like a yuppie city dork. These are moments you never think you’d cherish, especially not living here in nyc. Who knew that the other day when I was tending my very first inspired herb garden, I would find a familiar sight of stems devoid of its parsley leaves, and uncover a tiny black caterpillar with yellow decors. I still clumsily and squirmingly managed to defend my herbs. It was a small victory but it felt so full and so warm. More importantly, it led me to think of my Ah Ma half way around the world just about to turn in for the night.
— And so this is how I came to appreciate a video like this below.
Daniel Salatin from Polyface shows how to part a chicken. It’s really a thing of beauty. That’s a hot man.
*I’m considering posting some pictures of my Ah Ma’s garden but seeing as I hardly get any views i don’t see the point —
perhaps a little sign of life in forms of say about 10 comments might inspire me.