Hi, I’m Christabel. I own a Michelin Star Restaurant in Hong Kong.
This is a true story about how the most amazing, life changing thing can happen to people who least expect it. This is my story of how my life has changed since I met Chrissy and Alex over a year ago.
After many sessions talking with Chrissy and learning to look at things in a different way, I realized something really important; my parents were really screwed up and screwed me up too. I started out as a screwed up young adult with a screwed up view of the world; over sensitive, lacking in confidence and wallowing in self pity. I had a series of abusive boyfriends, a pattern of self destructive behaviour and generally felt unhappy.
Luckily we are blessed with a second child; a totally cool little girl who rocks my world. Inspired, I started a mother-daughter sportswear line called 'Trinity Rocks'. It shook me out of my hibernation and I gradually wanted to work again. Before I 'retired', I was an account director in advertising and also wrote a column in Hong Kong’s City Magazine. That was how my husband met me -- through reading my articles!
At the beginning of 2010, we started a restaurant, franchised from Japan specializing in Ramen Noodles. It was excruciating hard work. We had no F & B experience whatsoever, we speak zero Japanese and our Japanese partners speak zero English. We might as well be communicating with Martians. We also discovered that our business partner is not very honest (I spent hours talking to Chrissy about it and learning how to deal with it!).
On top of that, the restaurant was not well received. We wanted to introduce a totally new concept – “ramen fine dining”, serving fine food by uniformed garcons; the problem is that Ramen is usually a “cheap food”. We faced some pretty harsh criticisms and continued to struggle, loosing money every month. Our overheads are huge..... we flew in 2 Japanese chefs and pay for their accommodation, we import only the finest Japanese ingredients...... and we built our own noodle making factory.
Just when I had enough, when I was totally exhausted and fed up with it all, guess what? We got a Michelin Star! The first and only ramen restaurant in Hong Kong to get a star and not even one-year old! The business picked up over night.
I used to think my life was pretty much over, a washed up middle aged woman. But now I believe that I really can do it, really make something happen. Things are now really good with my husband, we have a much closer bond. It's like I have a second chance, a second life!
Chrissy.....Thank you so much for everything, for your patience, wisdom and advice. Thank you for listening to me for hours over the last year; and your trust in me and judgement, even at times when I had lost trust in myself. Most of all, thank you for reassuring me that I am a good mother....that I can overcome my own difficult childhood and the bad parenting that I recieved..... it continues to be so important in my life.
Chrissy, you really are life changing! I can't wait to see you again!
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