I’m fairly certain that I’ve written about the cute little Asian grocery that Emily and I frequent. I’m fairly certain the family who owns it is Vietnamese. The son is probably in his late 20s, and he speaks English. He visits with me when I go in (and asks about Emily when she’s not with me…WINK). The mom doesn’t speak as much English, and since we can’t meet in the middle with Norwegian, we usually get by with smiles, nods, and tousand takk.
If you follow my Insta, you’ve probably seen this delicious soup I’ve been making lately.
Soy ginger base, mushrooms, carrots, kale (I prefer it to bok choy), baby corn, bean sprouts, and rice noodles–all from this wonderful little market. They’ve got a great selection of produce and it’s less expensive than the other grocery stores in town. Not to mention their abundant supply of staples, fun treats, and their tea selection…I’m gushing. Okay, moving on.
Today I stopped in to get some veggies for another pot of soup, and only the mom was working. I made sure to do a full pass through the store because sometimes you don’t know that you need a thing until you see it and realize that you need it. I noticed a pile of Saran-wrapped buns that I figured were pork buns. They were obviously homemade. I grabbed one and threw it in the basket.
When I checked out, the mom was EXTRA friendly. She even playfully slapped my hand away when I tried to bag my own groceries. She twice said something about the bun and had a big smile on her face. (I knew then that it was something special and delicious and I was a FOOL for only buying one!)
Then, she got CHATTY. She started flipping through the calendar, trying to figure out how long I’d be in Norway. She asked where I live in the U.S., and if I like it here in Norway. (Better here in Norway?) At one point she very sweetly took my hand in both of hers and smiled intently at me. Then she asked me if I’m married or have babies….Ahhh, I think I see where this is going. I told her no, and she seemed pleased with that response. I didn’t understand everything she said, but I’m fairly certain she’s trolling for a daughter-in-law.
She also said many times that I’m very “koeslig” which you may recall means “cozy.” I think it also means cute? Or maybe I just remind her of a pile of blankets. Either way, it was a flattering…sort of awkward conversation. I told her thank you and peeled away as courteously as I could. I’m still going to shop there, obviously, but now there’s the added layer of being courted by a Vietnamese mother. I’m not sure how I feel about that.
When I got home, I got into that pork bun. And guys. GUYS. It was dreamy. I was absolutely a fool for only buying one. But it made me think…if these pork buns are part of the deal, maybe being married off wouldn’t be so bad after all?