Minh’s Notes

Human-readable chicken scratch

Minh Nguyễn
March 11th, 2005
Pilsen 2004


From a napkin

I realize that many of you juniors out there are in the middle of mission trip interviews now. With that in mind, I’ve started to publish here the contents of the little blue journal I kept during my mission trip to Chicago (Pilsen) last summer. While it’s probably too late to convince anyone else to sign up for a mission trip, maybe this will give the interviewees some morale.

This afternoon I posted my entry from Day One. Go ahead, read it. Then come back here and read on for a little explanation…

Welcome back. :^) Nuevo León’s food was really something. Not only were they generous; we first-timers could still tell that the food was good.

I tried a restaurant called El Picante right here in Loveland last weekend. That too was something to behold, but it definitely couldn’t beat what Nuevo León served us.

I noted on the journal entry that I planned to get Steven’s “napkin quotes,” some hilarious, off-the-cuff lines that my fellow missiontrippers spurted out when confronted with this new, exotic food. Since it’s been nine months since the trip, and because I know Steven to be notoriously bad at keeping track of things, I’ll post what I remember from that napkin:

One of the appetizers they served us (family-style) was a small bowl of sliced-up carrots. They looked innocent enough. So one of us tried one, and his eyes lit up:

That’s no ordinary carrot!

It turns out they were soaked in red hot chili peppers! A short while later, another one of us (Zach Franke) actually tried one of the chili peppers. He handled it alright (but between you and me, he was holding back his tears). :^) Then, tired from the long trip that day, he made the mistake of rubbing his eyes!

You could tell we were the clueless white Gringos. (That was our group’s friendly nickname, no offense intended.) Many of us had never tried spicy food before – I can’t believe they’d never tried Chipotle before!

I’m going to try and continue this series until it’s done. If you’re wondering why it took me so long to talk about my trip, let’s just say that my Lenten resolution is to stop procrastinating so much.

Now… if only I could post about my first mission trip, which I promised to post about as well…


  1. …I started this blog. I’m not going to go into a long diatribe about how far my blog has gone and what herdles I’ve had to overcome in keeping it going – I’ll save that for this time next year. For now, I’ll ju...