The universe, the guardian angel or the gods have a way of taking me through to the magnitudes of depths and glorious blooms of this life. Stories vary from one polar opposite to another. Here is a story of a day I will never forget, a day of great happiness and exhilaration, the day I first met Jamie Oliver. Only in my dreams did I imagine him in my home, filming with him. I planted the idea in a cosmic order and it happened!
I have been wanting to tell about the day Jamie came over, had a basic Vietnamese cooking lesson, cooked with me for a supper club and served it to our guests. It was one of the best days of my life. I wanted to shout about it for an entire year but couldn't because it was due to be aired for Jamie's Great Britain.
Listen to me, she yelled. Jamie Oliver! The guy from the TV, you have to call him!
Eh? Say again?!
He's looking for you! He's looking for a young foodie who knows about Vietnamese food.
What? Are you pulling my leg? Why would they call you and not me? Or get in contact via my blog? I don't believe you! Why are you playing a joke on me?
|Me, Jamie & My Mum|
And so, I was interviewed by the researcher, the director, the producer and within a few days, Fresh One camped outside the flat, there were 3 or 4 cameras in my kitchen and one downstairs, sound, assistants, lighting, grip, production manager - the whole works.
Hello! You must be Uyen. I'm Jamie Oliver. I've heard so much about you!
I was so shocked. I extended my hand which were cold and his were warm. Great hand shake with two kisses. No one expected me to meet him, that wasn't the plan- yet! I told Jamie how I was so pleased to meet him, how I loved him since we were both young and how I watched him all these years.
Good! He said. So this has worked out well for the both of us.
From then on, we were like old chums, chatting chatting like we were old friends catching up - Is that your fella? (its complicated) Is this your photography stuff? (yes) Is this your house? (yes) How long have you lived here (years) etc etc.
But we were indeed, strangers, and I was then to tell Jamie about our immigrant lives.
|Mr Vu & his daughter Linh - Owner of Namo|
|Mrs Linh & Jamie|
|Banh Mi 11 Girls & Jamie|
We talked about yin and yang, the hot and cold elements in food. I gave him civet cat coffee and explained to him how its actually coffee that the civet cat poos out. It was hilarious!
Meanwhile, my friends gathered like a pile of sardines quietly on the stairs eavesdropping. I went to powder my nose and they all waved in extreme excitement quietly with their mouths smiling like it was also the happiest day of their lives.
Jamie and I plated up the food and he bought it down with Mia and I to the guests (some close friends and Vietnamese friends of my mother) waiting downstairs.
|Mia & Jamie|
|My Mum, Aggie & Co Duyen|
Jamie was incredible and a very humble person. He is a people's person. He was so in tune with what anyone would say, listened and took it all in.
|Jamie chatting to everyone after dinner|
Jamie asked me if I wanted to open a restaurant. I said no. I said, I am a film maker, a photographer - thats what I want to do.
I want to go to Vietnam. He said.
Jamie Does Vietnam. I said. I would like to come with you.
similar to this). I even got to go inside The Cock In Cider. Marvellous!
This did not get through to the final cut. The gods have other plans. I continue to love Jamie Oliver.