Letter from The Publisher

Tracy Patterson

My first love affair with real ethnic food began in the ‘80s, when the first Vietnamese food restaurant came to the city I was living in, and luckily, a few blocks from where I was working downtown.

I was not that diligent about bringing my lunch to work, so my co-workers and I often ate at the various restaurants in the neighborhood. Most afternoons when I stood up I’d feel like I needed to hang on to a filing cabinet for dear life so I wouldn’t faint on the floor (or at least that’s how it felt). I then discovered that white bread was causing the problem—this was long before people even talked about gluten intolerance and the detriments of white bread (at least where I was living).

One day my friend asked me if I wanted to try something new, a Vietnamese restaurant. I was ready to try anything different, so off we went. The prices were low and the food was beyond awesome, and I’ve been eating Vietnamese food ever since.

Although I cook, I haven’t tried Vietnamese food at home, so it’s often the food of choice when my husband and I go out for lunch or dinner. Pho, a steaming bowl of delicious broth with rare beef, vegetables, rice noodles, and a heaping side of bean sprouts, herbs, lime and chilies—it doesn’t get better than that. Well, actually it does; the other huge benefit is that I no longer need a filing cabinet to prop me up after going out for lunch!

On another note, in a previous publisher’s letter I shared a creative piece that I wrote in a class I participated in online. A reader wrote to me and explained that she took the same class recently! She gave me the okay to share her “color” with you:

Unpredictable. Passionate. Complex.   

I embody universal love and swirl throughout the skies of an Arizona sunset. I sparkle in the jagged edges of amethyst. Go ahead; allow your gaze to settle upon my brilliance. Feeling a sense of contentment? This is one of my many charms. I can mesmerize, fill you with compassion and kindness. Dare to invite me in and drape yourself in my luxuriousness. 

Please do not mistake me for being soft; I am unabashedly deeper than pink or mauve. The fiery redness of the setting sun lives within. Versatile and ever-changing, I can blend into the spectrum of rainbow colors when I am called upon to live in subtlety. My less vibrant cousin can be found lurking in the face of a mountain as the light of day fades to black and is frequently recognized as “purple mountain majesty.” My hue glistens within the richness of an eggplant’s skin. Caress my velvety smoothness on the petal of a tulip.

Immerse yourself…I am Magenta. ~Gina

I hope you enjoy this issue of Natural Awakenings. As always, please feel free to contact me with comments, suggestions or questions. This is your magazine—enjoy!


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