1) One time when he came up to visit me in Irvine, we went to Mimi’s Cafe for brunch. He tried the country fried steak, while I ordered my usual triple berry french toast. We were both wearing our Threadless t-shirts that my brother had bought, one for himself and one for me. We decided to take a photo to capture the moment and show off the new tees that he had gotten for us. It was during this moment that he realized he had somehow grown a small gut and began to freak out wondering when this flab had all of a sudden appeared.
2) On one of my many getaway trips to SD during my college years, we grabbed lunch at The Cheese Shop at La Jolla Shores. While eating there, we overheard the table next to us talking about sharks being out near the shores that day. Nevertheless, we decided to take up his friend’s offer and rent two kayaks to go out to La Jolla Shores. Though I had a fever all weekend, I went with his idea and we went kayaking for two hours. While kayaking out away from the shores, my brother decided to check out the caves even though it was off limits for kayakers without a guide. Not wanting to be left out in the middle of the ocean by myself, I followed suit. Right when both our kayaks went into the caves, strong waves pushed against the rocks and we fought so hard to push ourselves out of the caves. When we both made it safe out of the caves, we came to our senses that maybe there was a reason why the caves were off limits without a guide.
3) Last February, I went down to SD to watch the brothers of Berean and CEC play in Mission Bowl at UCSD. Oblivious that my brother had been playing in the tournament for the past few years, I was surprised to find out that my brother was the QB for his team. Not to brag, but I hadn’t known that my brother had those football skills in him until that day. After playing for the majority of the day, previous injuries in his knee stopped him from being able to continue on with his team to the semifinals. While he was sitting out with a friend who was helping him stretch, I asked him how he was doing with his knee. He simply said he was okay so I believed him and asked a friend to take the photo of us below. Little did I know that he was hurting, but being the little sister, I took his word when he said he was fine.
Though random, I share these three specific memories because they remind me of who my brother is to me. The first is rare since he got all the good genes in the family (straight white teeth and 6 feet tall). By middle school, he already grew to be the tallest in the family and not until working life was he pretty much underweight or average for his height. Realizing his small gut was a real shocker to him. The second shows my brother’s knack for being spontaneous and adventurous. The third represents our older brother-younger sister relationship as I look up to him and take in nearly everything he tells me as the wiser, more mature, and responsible older brother.
Today is his birthday. I think it will make him happy if you checked out his blog: kreptonic.wordpress.com. He is quite the writer, photographer, and videographer. A man with purpose and passion but also spontaneity and adventure who enjoys life through its ups and downs. He is my top supporter and never ceases to inspire and encourage me to enjoy life too and walk faithfully with the Lord. Thank you and happy 26th, 哥哥!