My Sis in Law, Karen ( Big bro Charles' wife) died last night. I am missing her already.
We are not exactly excited about Sam's pumpkin plant because we don't eat pumpkin. Many friends don't understand why.
You see, Mum and Dad grew up as kids and teenagers during the Second World War when the Japanese plundered Borneo. Import of rice and other food ceased, and the poor people depended on root vegetables and pumpkins to survive. Dad said they ate so much of the boiled thing without any salt or oil. They were so scared of them. Hence, they never served it to us.
When I was in primary school, Dad would drive us pass a small river where there were barges laden with pumpkins. Dad told me that the pumpkins were for pigs. This "Pumpkins were for pigs" were so ingrained in me that though I am past half a century, I would still not touch pumpkin.
The funniest anecdote in the family would be when Mum and Dad went to Christchurch, New Zealand to visit my Kiwi sister in law for the first time. For the Kiwis, a roast leg of lamb if often accompanied by roast kumara and pumpkin. That is supposedly one of the best dish you can serve. Mum and Dad did not eat the pumpkin wondering why Karen served them such a lowly vegetable. Karen thought she didn't cook well. Years later, when I came to NZ, I cleared this misunderstanding.