Pasa Monti is an Indonesian student studying business management at Edmonds Community College through the Northwest Community College Initiative (NWCCI) program. In this blog piece, Pasa writes about her recent experiences with American friends on Valentine’s Day.
As most of us know, in the U.S people celebrate February 14th as Valentine’s Day. On that day, an American family invited me to join them to see the Flower and Garden Show in downtown Seattle. My first thought was, “How can they have a garden and flower show in winter?” Then the family told me that people give special treatment to those flowers so that the flowers could blossom earlier and be ready for that show. Indeed, when I entered the convention center, I was welcomed by so many beautiful flowers everywhere. Most of the flowers were ones I had never see before, perhaps they were American flowers that can’t grow in a tropical country like Indonesia. What made me really excited was a garden full of red tulips. It was my first time to see tulips directly and moreover I saw it in the U.S. I had been told that the tulip is the symbol of Netherlands and I thought I would need to go there to see tulips.
In addition to the gardens with beautiful flowers, I could attended a seminar about growing goats and chickens in the city. It was an interesting seminar, but it was also funny to see how some Americans treat goats and chickens like pets and they think that goats and chickens are cute. I have some neighbors who raise goats and chickens in Indonesia, but they definitely don’t treat them like their pets. They raise them and then sell them or cook them after they are big enough.
Overall, visiting the Garden and Flower Show was a perfect activity to do in the Valentine’s Day, but it wasn’t the end of my great Valentine’s Day. Right after I came home from that event, my friendship family called me and said that they had some little Valentine’s gifts for me. I was so excited to know what kind of gift that American usually give on Valentine’s day. I met my friendship family in the evening and they gave me a bouquet of flowers, a doll and chocolates. In the end, celebrating Valentine’s day in America was an amazing new experience. I would love to say thank you to everyone and all American family who always support me and give me so much love during my time in the U.S. Happy Valentine’s day!
The NWCCI program is part of the Community College Initiative, an exchange program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.