You may recognize that phrase on a name tag. But I first saw it in an English-Khmer book that my dad was given in a refugee camp. It's a common phrase that you learn in any language book: 'Bonjour, je m'appelle..." "Hola! Me llamo..."
Some of you may know me as Meth and Nary's son. Or Vicheaka's and Mason's dad. A few may know me as husband to Marin. Or get me confused with my brother Samedy (but definitely not Arun who was born in Richmond). Maybe you heard that I work as a lab tech on night shift? Ahh, a few of you may remember I was one of the Sunday school teachers 20 years ago...
Some might ask, "But if he grew up at Ginter Park, how come I don't really know him? What made him return?"
Well, there were many signs calling me to come back to Ginter Park. I was nervous, and worried that I might feel like a stranger four years ago... but Ginter Park is such a special place full of friendly people. People that welcome people. Some of us greet each other with a warm smile, friendly eyes, a wave, a handshake, a hug. Welcoming others and making them feel like GPPC is "home" (like others did for me many times) is something I want to personally do more naturally. I often imagine GPPC members and my Cambodian family decades ago exchanging many ways of greetings. I even imagine hearing someone say... "Sor'sdey, K'nyome Ch'mooh..." Makara.
Along with all those other things, Makara Meth is an incoming Session member. His Elder class is sharing reflections in this space.