Ladies Night

I’m a day late (two, actually) and a dollar short, as usual, but Happy Women’s Day to you all!

Oh? You didn’t know? March 8th is International Women’s Day (although it’s international I’d never heard of or celebrated it stateside) and women across the world, or at least this nation, celebrate by taking the day off of work, wishing each other Happy Holiday, and generally reveling in their femininity.

I, for one, was the lucky recipient of a large bouquet of carnations/Queen Anne’s Lace/ other assorted and lovely flowers all of which I don’t know the names. This, thanks to the very friendly and most likely slightly intoxicated restaurant owner down the street, who made a big ceremony of presenting Michael with the flowers and then having Michael deliver them to me. Apparently the restaurant had just hosted a Women’s Day party in the upstairs room and had a few bouquets left over…. which ended up in my hands. Just one of those times when being a foreign face worked in my favor, I suppose.

To celebrate, I had a few friends over for a movie night—Jane Eyre (after a few failed attempts at The Blind Side). The novel is one of my favorites but it turns out the movie version isn’t quite up to par, although that might be related to the sub-par audio quality which left me relying on sub-titles in my second language…humorous, actually, as even when I could read I typically only made it through half a sentence before the dialogue moved on. Really, not an ideal situation, and probably doesn’t put me in the best position to judge the movie. It was quite a fail of a night, really, as the apple cake I made tanked in a royal way, due to technical difficulties it took us about an hour to get the movie started, and Albus peed on the carpet . Ah, well, such is life.

Hmmm, what else? I wanted to write some deep reflections on what it means to be a woman in a traditionally male-dominated culture, but I think I’m out of words and, anyway, I’m white and it probably isn’t really my place to make overarching judgments. I will share a quick story, though: some American friends of ours are expecting and recently went to the hospital for an ultrasound. The doctor didn’t tell them their baby’s gender at the time—it’s technically against the law here because of sex-selective abortions. Our teacher later offered to call the hospital and explain that “getting your boy” is not a big deal in America and tell the doctor it’s OK to divulge the baby’s sex, our friends wouldn’t abort a girl.

All that to say, I do think it’s important to spend time reflecting on the remaining disparities between the way women and men are valued, in this Asian culture and, quite honestly, in our American bubble as well.

So, to my mom and aunts and sisters and all of you in America who didn’t get to celebrate for yourself: Happy Women’s Day!

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