Why not be an entrepreneur? My grandfather did it. He owned two restaurants and three liquor stores during his lifetime. He didn’t just own these establishments, he ran them all as well. He was the cook serving up Chinese and American dishes and he was the clerk at his liquor stores.
Those stats are pretty impressive considering his meager beginnings. Grandpa was born in Canton, China way back in 1902. He decided to leave his family to come to California at the age of 16 knowing that he would never return to see his family again. He spoke no English, had $20 dollars in his pocket, and knew no one in this country. Just writing about this, I can only imagine the courage he had in him, as well as the desperation.
I remember one day when I was a little girl, we drove up to a Victorian house somewhere in Napa, California. He told me that he used to work in this house, as a house boy. “A house boy?”, I thought. “How peculiar!”. He must have had numerous odd jobs before he was able to become an entrepreneur. So, what’s this story doing in my chocolate blog? It’s a simple answer. For me, it all starts with my grandfather. If he could immigrate here and become a successful businessman, I can become successful in anything I do. He had more obstacles stacked against him. He came here with no money, no family support, he had to learn a new language, and he was of Chinese descent. Despite all of these obstacles, it didn’t change the content of his character. I remember him as a man of integrity and pride. He spoke ill of no one and always called younger people he met as ‘young man’ or ‘young woman’ regardless of who they were or where they came from. He respected everyone and everyone respected him.
The traits of my grandfather is a reflection in how I operate Jade Chocolates. Creating Jade Chocolates won’t be easy, but it can’t be that hard. My grandfather showed me that.
(Above is a photo of my grandparents in a traditional tai chi pose. They practiced tai chi every single morning in the backyard for as long as I can remember.)