CANADA - A Filipino-Canadian-American banker has written a best-selling book about the Pinoy culture as seen through the lens of the family.
Filipino-Canadians in Vancouver warmly welcomed one of their own, as author Marie Claire Lim Moore launched her book "Don't Forget the Soap: And Other Reminders From My Fabulous Filipina Mother..." in Canada.
The book which tells of the traditional family values handed down to Moore by her parents has become an Amazon bestseller, and is now also sold in bookstores in the US and the Philippines.
"I didn't realize the extent to which both Filipinos in the Philippines, as well as abroad, would feel connected, as well as other Asian-Americans--immigrants in general--and actually it went beyond that too… women who were also balancing career and families, so it's been a nice, a nice surprise," said Moore.
Moore remembers her childhood in Vancouver where she was born and where the family lived until she was 12 years old.
It was the height of the anti-Marcos protests and they would be in rallies on Robson Street. Her mother, printmaking artist Lenore R.S. Lim, said they also brought the kids to other Filipino gatherings as a way to teach them about their roots.
"When we were starting our life and our families in Vancouver, what we tried to do was encourage other Filipinos also to show the best in the Philippines so we would hold Philippine nights so as they were growing up, they were exposed to our dances, music and food so that's how she got to really love the Philippines," Lim said.
Moore, who studied at Yale and is now based in Singapore, said she wrote the book to pass on the Filipino values that she treasures to her children.
The book's title comes from the Pinoy traveler's habit of collecting soaps from hotels abroad and bringing these home as souvenirs.
"I travel quite a lot and so what I do, too, is collect the soap. When I'm in the Philippines I stay in hotels and so they have a lot of fancy soaps and usually I can really gather so much, that's why I can relate," said Trenee Lopez of the Vancouver Multicultural Society.
Those who have read the book rave about its life lessons.
"How to work with family and friends, and how to be so thoughtful and to ensure that you're looking after everyone," said teacher, Teresa Disney.