The First Time I Met Chef’s Entire Extended Family

Mariachi en la ciudad de Guadalajara, Jalisco,...

Mariachi en la ciudad de Guadalajara, Jalisco, México. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Chef is from a very, very large Hispanic family. His mother is the eldest child of 13 kids. How incredibly awesome is that?? Basically, her parents gave birth to their own football team, with alternates. I love that…Anyways, Chef’s white father left his family pretty early on in Chef’s life, and left his mom and her very large, close-knit family, to raise their four kids. Sad, but it was what it was.

To introduce me to this large extended family, Chef thought it would be fun to take me to one of his family’s get-togethers. And these people throw a fantastic party. Good food, good locations, and Mariachi‘s for entertainment. And I was really nervous, but excited to be going. When we arrived, the family was really nice to me, especially my new mother-in-law. The only fly in the soup was that they all spoke Spanish to each other. And my Spanish really bites. I can understand some of it if you speak super slowly and only ask me where the bathroom is. Oh, or cuss my mother. I know the bad words…I mean, I did go to school in Los Fresnos for

Anyways, the Mariachi’s were singing, and the song was really kind of beautiful, so I asked Chef to translate it for me.

“My love for you can grow no stronger,” was his answer. Mmmm, I thought, pretty.

An elderly Aunt came over and said something to me, patting me on the head. Again, I looked at Chef for clarification, and he said, “She loves you.” Okay. It was a lot of words for that, but again, I’m not bilingual…I’ll defer to the Hispanic Chef.

The Mariachi’s sang another song, and again I was told that it was a song about how the singer could not love his lover more.

Conversations happened all around me all evening, and Chef would interpret them all, and evidently this whole family was a very loving family, because they were all talking all night long about love and how it couldn’t grow any stronger….for each other, for spouses, for kids, for friends….on and on, every conversation around me!

Finally, Chef’s mom came over and made a small announcement to the few of us in the livingroom.

“You guys talk in English. You know Donny doesn’t speak Spanish….neither does his wife. Be polite!”

Four hours of translations from the one Hispanic in the family that never bothered to learn Spanish…What a goof!!

– Bird

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