Hi, I’m Chez, welcome to my place (chez moi): a space for sharing my writing and photographs about eating, cooking, travelling and creating home. This blog works for me as a creative outlet and a repository of recipes and memories. This is how it began:
In late 2010 Colin and I decided to throw caution to the wind. We resigned from our jobs in Auckland, New Zealand, sold most of our belongings, and embarked on a trip through South East Asia. We saw the Temples of Angkor, encountered cockroaches and monkeys in Halong Bay, ate amazing food throughout Vietnam, fell in love with Luang Prabang, and even went to Myanmar for a cup of tea. In July 2011 we left Bali and landed in Brisbane, Australia, for the second phase of our adventure – starting over with no jobs, no car, and nowhere to live. Change is certainly enlivening, as indicated in this overview of our 2011.
This blog started as a way for friends and family to follow our Asia travels, but chez moi actually means “my place”, in the sense of belonging to, or simply, home (and yes, my name really is Chez, pronounced “Shay”). As any immigrant knows, one’s homeland assumes a particular poignancy once it is left. Australia isn’t exactly a world away from New Zealand, neither in distance nor in culture, but still, there was (and is) a sense of displacement and impermanence amidst the excitement of living somewhere new.
Because “home” became more complex, I continued this blog as a way to chart the process of carving out a new life. The transition was a little awkward at first, but I quickly found that writing about food fitted me well. Food is essential to me in a symbolic sense as well as in a physical, satisfy-my-stomach one. When I re-make favourite family recipes in my new home, I communicate my personal history and consolidate a sense of self. This post about my Nana’s scones sums up these ideas pretty well.
So what is this blog about? The main emphasis is on what I’m cooking and eating, or what I remember that I cooked and ate in some other time and place. However, I’ve never been a single-minded type. Some of my posts feature photographs or photo essays. There are occasional posts that muse on the meanings of home: the homes that I miss as well as the ones I am trying to create. True to this blog’s roots, there are also posts featuring travel. Although travel doesn’t happen as often as I’d like these days, it’s partly in moving away from and returning to home, even on a daily basis, that builds a sense of place, chez moi. So that’s it really: eating, travelling and creating home: efforts in, stories about, and reflections on.
Please note: All photos and writing (my material) used in this blog are my own (unless otherwise stated and credited) and are protected by copyright as outlined below:
Chez Moi is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
This means: You cannot use my material for commercial purposes; you may not distribute adaptations of my material; and if you do use my material, you must credit me and link back to this blog.