An open letter by: Masami Yenson.My Culinary adventure and a dream come to life.

This young lady has come from the USA to improve her skills knowledge, so that she can embark on a new and exciting career. She has made sacrifices next to none to be here, so as to ensure she can be one of the best in what she has decided is her passion, The Kitchen! She is a credit to L’Ècole Culinaire Memphis and her InstructorsAlison, Sidney Bond and The International Kitchen 

The first time I came to   Yzeures-sur-creuse was through International Kitchen, arranged by my school,   L’Ècole Culinaire Memphis Tennessee USA as an extern trip. It was an amazing   experience to say the least. Be careful before you decide to come here, this   place will get under your skin and permeate every fiber of your soul. First   of all the rich the history of France that stares you in the face on every   building and hints of times long ago that you can see in the stones on the   streets and your mind imagines another time and place and you are in awe. You   find yourself imagining who lived here and what happened behind these walls   and if you listen closely you can almost hear the picturesque beauty of this   place talking to you.

The Bonds Sidney and Allison welcome you   with open arms, and you feel like a part of their family, and if you are   lucky you become an extension of their family. You will learn more in the   short time you have there than you thought you would, and each day will be   filled with an adventure that unfolds and reveals new things you did not know   about food, history, culture and yourself.

When I left I never dreamed I would come   back but hoped to and then something exciting happened an opportunity to   learn pastry and spend more than a few days here on stage (a learning work   experience). I applied and was accepted and I shall forever be changed by my   time here for the better. Isabel the owner of the hotel has also become a   part of my extended family as well as the Bonds,  their children and Allison’s mom Doreen;   they gave me the opportunity to follow my dreams but more than that to become   a part of a village and a people who I without realizing or willingly have   fallen in love with.

I eat gypsy breakfast with   Isabelle every morning and listen to stories about France the village and   about Isabelle herself, I spend time with the Bonds when these incredibly   busy people have time, and learn things I can take with me in my quest to   become the best chef I can, but more than just learning they also share their   history stories and their family with me and I am grateful that I was   welcomed into their personal world. I have prayed where Joan of Arc prayed, I   have touched the stones where she bought her first suit of armor, I have seen   ruins of castles and wondered which fairy tale princess lived there long ago.   I have been to the place where the most beautiful woman in France is buried.   I have been taken down the street to museums, and rode in a car to see one of   my co-workers vote in the next election for the president of France.  Did I mention I barely speak French and yet   the people still welcome me with open arms? I have learned many things about   France the pastry and myself. In the time and process of learning France, The   Bonds, and Isabelle and my co-workers, like a pirate stealing from a cargo   ship filled with gold and textiles, swooped in without warning and without   any signs, and stole my heart and a piece of it will always remain here. The   people are proud of their rich history and they live to sustain quality of   life, not to make faster, but to produce the best product they can and give   the best quality to their customers something they can be proud of. The   people also take time to enjoy life. I was blessed to share the world of   these people, and to become a part of this place, I am the first to come but   I hope not the last, and I hope this endures for a long time to come. I work   in the hotel kitchen and I love my fellow co-workers and my job. This was an   amazing opportunity that I am humble and grateful for and do not know how to   every repay this , or how to say thank you in a way that would not pale in   comparison to the way it has made me feel. I am “The pastry chef” of Relais   de la Mothe because of this wonderful opportunity. I love my job I love this   place and its people and I have forever been changed by my experience   here….

Thank you for absolutely   everything Masami Yenson

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