#265 – Kimchi or Kem Cho?

#265 - Kem Cho?

#265 - back
sent from: London, UK. destination: Los Angeles, California, USA

We were out for a bike ride in a nearby South London suburb called New Malden. When we lived in LA we made a point of going to seek out good restaurants in ethnic neighbourhoods or in out-of-the-way places. We heard that New Malden had a concentration of good Korean restaurants because of the local Korean community. Also, I needed something from the hardware store. We passed a ‘B+Q’, a giant monolith superstore. I didn’t want to go there for a drill bit, the thought of it depressed me. I figured we might find one nearby – “but who would set up a local store in the shadow of this behemoth?” 100 yards up the road, we saw the signs in Korean, and we started to imagine all the delicious food we would eat. Then Maria pointed out the hardware store and I went in, happy to find a local place. It was the classic local store, haphazard piles of tools, the smell of paint and plaster and dust and behind the counter, a man with a long beard and the typical golden embroidered topi of the Bohra Muslim community [JL – Maria’s community]. I was so excited – you don’t see them every day in London, and I didn’t expect to find them in this little corner of the suburbs. “Kem Cho?” I said to him. He smiled and laughed. “Fine, fine, alhamdulillah.” I’m sure he didn’t expect to hear me say “Kem Cho” 🙂

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