November 28, 2004
I resolved my bi-cultural food conflict by going traditional American for Thanksgiving itself, and Korean for the day after. The American dinner was from a restaurant too. I basically just heated it up, and Tim made stuffing. It came with cornbread stuffing, which we’d never had before but seemed like a pretty bad idea — you don’t want strange Southern foods on Thanksgiving, you want exactly what you’re used to, which in our case is french-bread stuffing with sausage and leeks and sometimes oysters. Getting a takeout Thanksgiving dinner turns out to be not that much less work than cooking the damn thing from scratch, except for the time involved in defrosting and/or brining the turkey.
Yesterday we went on a jaunt to Año Nuevo State Park to see the elephant seals. After trudging through the wind and mist for 1.5 miles, we reached the shore. We looked around, asking each other “Where are the elephant seals? I don’t see any elephant seals.” Then we suddenly became aware that there was a juvenile elephant seal within 10 feet of where we were standing, cleverly concealed as a sand dune. And the entire landscape before us was filled with female elephant seals lolling in the seaweed or swimming just off the beach.
My dad did a tremendous number of chores around the house — including assembling a new gas grill! — and my mom cooked a fabulous dinner featuring enormous quantities of galbi, ojinga bokkum (stir-fried squid in hot sauce), and eundaegu jorim (braised black cod with giant white radish). Korean parents are SO useful!