As I’m writing this post, I’m 10 hours away from celebrating my 23rd birthday. As I was sitting in the church today this morning, I can’t help to think what happened to me for the past years. And Lyon + Mia, was a huge part of my year : ) It was during these times, last year — that I wanted to create a food blog — which you all are seeing right now. Henceforth, do give me this chance to write this post, as a tribute to what being a food blogger gave me for the past year. I made many friends – many many friends — many of them are great, exceptional, and talented people who I adored for so long (Muthi for the good laughs and inputs. Haseena for teaching me many things about wine. Mia & Malinda from Mandarin Oriental for supporting me so much. Denverino Dante, my mentor and ex boss. Deisy Wong & Risti Brophy – magnificent fun ladies. Mullie, Ellyna, Andry, Rian, Ruby, Alin, Hans, Eddy, and many more bloggers I can’t say one by one. For those of you who don’t know, the reason I started blogging was to share my experiences during my work. When I was a writer, I got so impatient when I have to wait a month, to maybe 2 months to see my writings flashing across the magazine. I wanted to make it faster. Upon my first few posts, I told my mom about this blog. She said, and I remembered, “You can’t even taste what you ate inside your own home. If you can’t do a simple thing like this, then how can you write a proper blog?” Her word bang me to the ground. It’s true. I can’t identify a lot of dish. But I do know which one is nice, and which one aren’t. Hence, I make a promise to step up the game. Whenever I go for another interview, I make myself to ask every single question on the ingredients used on the dish. Thankfully, I managed to know what I ate now. Hence now, my mom are getting irritated because of my continuos comments on her dish — sorry mom. I’m just trying to make it better : ) The second thing that I learned is about the purpose of food itself. This learning experience have just hit me during the Halal Bihalal invitation by Dewi Magazine. It was held at The Grand Cafe at Grand Hyatt Jakarta a couple of weeks ago. Many thanks to Dewi Magazine, and my good friend Muthi for this special invitation. The dinner was attended by several notable names, such as: Ni Luh Sekar, Editor in Chief of Dewi Magazine, Lala Timothy, film producer — who has produced several box office movies, Modus Anomali & Pintu Terlarang, acclaimed Indonesian designer, Didiet Maulana, has long been a notable icon for fashionistas, and the Jakarta city inhabitants, and several food bloggers and activists including Rita Satar from Yayasan Jantung Indonesia, and Melanie Camaro from Planet Organik, along with one of the founders of Aku Cinta Masakan Indonesia, Santhi Serad. Our dinner rambled on about how fast the appreciation of society towards Indonesia are increasing — and how we must preserve it, as the International folks had acknowledged our present ( remember when Rendang was dubbed as the number 1 food in the world by CNN International? ). A statement from Didiet Maulana himself hit me. “The purpose of food is not only to satisfy your hunger. But, its also a way of communicating between each other.” I have tasted many talented cooks, and chefs to Michelin Chefs which has expressed their passion, and love towards others through what they know best – cooking. We as people then on managed to share the experiences we have amongst others. I ate a lot with my folks, cousins, and friends, and it all came perfectly to me that we are all bounded by what we share, and what we have, while we are sitting at a table, and immerse ourselves with what we eat. To think about it again, food can often be a perfect ice breaker ; ) I can say that this is the best things that I learned through my food blog, Lyon + Mia. Not only that I can learn so many things, and meet many new friends, but it’s about the later phase — on creating the relationship that counts. I’ll see you all on the next post!