When I was in high school in the States, my dorm room was right next to the phone, so I'd often hear people's conversations with their loved ones. One thing that surprised me was they would often end their calls with "I love you." Coming from Japan, this felt very new and different.
I shared my thoughts with my roommate, Elena. "My parents and my friends in Japan have never said, 'I love you,' to me," I told her. "But I know they love me." This time it was Elena's turn to be surprised. "How can you tell if someone loves you," she asked, "unless they tell you they love you?"
Perhaps it was the way I was brought up, but for me, love expressed through actions seems more natural, more heart-warming, than just being told "I love you.'' Take, for example, my mother's cooking. She knows what everyone in my family likes and she always does her best to prepare our favorite food, regardless of the obstacles that may present.
So I came home from class to find a dish of tempura on the table, complete with a dipping sauce. As an expression of love, it was unmistakable, and I was deeply moved.
Of course, I'm not saying that mothers who say "I love you" are not acting upon what they say. I'm just saying that generally we are more impressed with a person's sincerity if they act on their beliefs than if they just talk about them. That's the essence of this week's proverb.
I myself wrote this piece on Mother's Day, contemplating how I could show my love for my mother in more than just words. In fact, I spent so long thinking about it that the day quickly came to an end and I had to make do with just writing her a note. Ironic, no?
Q1 What is one example Kana gives as her mother's action to express love for her family?
A1) Kana's mother always bought her what she wanted.
A2) Kana's mother forgave her for getting bad grades.
A3) Kana's mother would always try to cook everyone's favorite dishes.
正解： A3) Kana's mother would always try to cook everyone's favorite dishes.
Q2 Why did Kana's mother go through the trouble of preparing tempura in New York?
A1) Because it was one of Kana's favorite meals.
A2) Because she wanted to try out a N.Y. eggplant tempura.
A3) Because she had a lot of tempura dipping sauce with her.
正解： A1) Because it was one of Kana's favorite meals.