We all know the US is a giant melting pot; however, sometimes we are drawn to socialize with people from a similar background – especially our Latinx gente who have an unspoken understanding of what it means to grow up with our unique heritage, even if we don’t always discuss it.
I myself was born in Venezuela and lived in Miami for 8 years. Nevertheless, my life truly changed when I moved to Los Angeles about a year ago – I finally grew into myself and became an adult. Los Angeles is a city that caters to people from all around the world, and I soon realized that I had never had a romantic intercultural experience – that is, until I met my current partner.
He is Korean-American, and he has spent most of his life in California. His father came to the US at a very young age, but his mother came when she was in her 20’s after marrying his dad. Just like in most Latino households, their primary language at home was his mother’s first language – so they spoke a lot of Korean.
Despite many cultural differences, we fell in love, and over a year later we’re still going strong!
From my own experience – and it’s still a journey – I have come to find out there are many advantages to dating someone from a different background. I understand everything is a bit different at the moment, but since we aren’t dating in person, you’ll have a lot to look forward to when the world heals. You can even get started on some of these activities virtually! So without further ado, here’s a few great benefits to intercultural romance:
*Trying new food
This is my favorite part. From our first date to right now, we are constantly introducing each other to new plates from our respective countries of origin. One of my favorites from his country is a fermented cabbage dish called kimchi.
View this post on Instagram
Vegan Kimchi by @okonomikitchen ❤️ SALTING CABBAGE 1 medium head of napa cabbage (1.5-2lbs/750g) 1/4 cup coarse sea salt (also called pickling salt) Kimchi Seasoning Paste 1 tbsp sweet rice flour 1/2 – 2/3 cup vegan dashi (or water) 1/2 fuji apple (90g/sub Asian pear or persimmon) 1 tsp salt 1 tbsp miso paste 1 tbsp soy sauce 1/2 tbsp minced ginger 4 garlic cloves 4 stalks scallions, whites and greens divided 1/4 – 1/3 cup korean red pepper flakes Optional Ingredients: 1/2 medium carrot, sliced into match sticks (60g) 1/2 cup daikon radish, sliced into match sticks (80g) 1 tsp sesame seeds INSTRUCTIONS Slice cabbage in 1/2. Then slice each half into 1/4. Chop into 1 inch pieces in width. Add chopped into a large bowl & then massage in the coarse sea salt. As you do this, you’ll notice the cabbage beginning to wilt & releasing some water. Cover the bowl & let it sit for 1-2 h. The cabbage is ready when you’re able to bend a piece without it snapping in half. In the meantime, prepare the seasoning paste. Add the water & flour into a sauce pan over medium heat & whisk together until combined for around 10 min until it begins to get thick. Remove from heat & let it cool. Once the cabbage is ready, rinse the cabbage throughly & drain well (I like to let it sit in the colander over a bowl for half an hour). Add all the kimchi seasoning paste into a food processor & blend until a paste forms. Add the drained cabbage back into the bowl along with the carrot, daikon, green parts of the scallions and kimchi seasoning paste. Put on some gloves & massage the paste throughly into the vegetables. Transfer into a air tight container & use your hands to pack down the kimchi. Everything should be submerged in the juices. Close the lid and leave out at room temperature for 2 days. Do not open lid for the first 48h. After 2 days, give it a taste. If you want it to ferment more (more sourness) let it sit for another 24h. Once the kimchi ferments into your desired flavour, store in the fridge for 1-2 months (optimal freshness) & up to 1 year. The longer it sits, the more intense the tangy & sour flavour will become. Discard any kimchi if you see signs of surface mold.
*A whole new world opens up to you – from EVERY angle.
You may have taken for granted the historical significance of various cultures, or never even given it much thought. Personally, I had not met someone from South Korea before meeting my partner, so I was able to discover an entirely new culture from scratch!
*Travel to their country
In my case, it’s a little different due to Venezuela’s current situation. However, we have had the opportunity to visit my family in Miami, and my partner was thrilled to see such a Latin city for the first time. I still need to visit South Korea; I can’t wait.
* No more stereotypes…
This one is important, especially in our current societal climate. It turns out the only thing my partner knew about Venezuela was Miss Universe…
…and let’s not even mention my preconceived notions about Asian culture overall.
We soon realized these are easy to overcome…but we had a lot of work to do. It feels good to see culture from an authentic lens.
*We are all HUMAN!
Being human is our common denominator – beyond culture, race and background, all of us are human.
View this post on Instagram
WE ARE ONE! And we're so ready to grow, connect and RISE with all our AMIGAS at #WeAllGrow Summit 2020 – our sixth annual gathering! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ We're taking over the @RivieraPalmSprings from May 28th to 30th, 2020!! 🌵 This awe-inspiring and iconic hotel is nestled between the mountains and the Coachella Valley desert that the Agua Caliente Cahuilla Indians have inhabited for centuries. We are in gratitude for being called to these ancestral grounds to hold space in sisterhood. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Ready to join us? Tickets go on Thursday, Oct. 10 starting at 11am PST/2pm ET on Thursday, Oct. 10. Set those alarms! ⏰ We sold out within 3 hours for our last Summit! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ All #WeAllGrowAMIGAS members will be able to get their ticket one hour in advance. Make sure you join! Link in bio. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Find all details and answers to most of your Qs at weallgrowlatina.com/summit-2020. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Yay! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Design by @onlychildesign . ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #therivierapalmsprings #theriv #visitpalmsprings #palmsprings #weallgrowsummit