Saturday, October 18, 2014

When visitors come

When visitors come it immediately pulls you back to a time when the sights, smells and experiences you have everyday were not everyday.  Back to when it was all fresh and raw.  

There are cows in the road.  So much poverty.  Sight-seeing.  Mountains.  The saris are beautiful.  Pollution - garbage, air, noise.  Trekking.  Temples.  Namaste.  

It's exciting for awhile, but it is also comforting when you settle back into your norm.  The familiar, routine.  And once again the city is not a tourist destination, it is home.

Sunday, October 12, 2014


I'm a sucker for fruit and am always game to try a new variety.  We spent this Dashain holiday in Krabi, Thailand and at breakfast one morning a weird looking fruit was set out.  I thought at first it was a type of lychee, but wasn't.  After some googling I've decided it was Salek, or snakefruit.  No one else in our group wanted to try it.  I wasn't going to be put off by the chicken foot appearance and decided to go for it; it was not good.  I'm going to give it the benefit of the doubt that it wasn't ripe and next time I run across it I'll give it another go, but more hesitantly and with less anticipation.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Why McDonalds?

When we travel you can usually count on us hitting up a McDonalds or Starbucks where ever we are. Why is that, when at home in the states those are not places we hardly ever eat at? A couple reasons: 1) it's food from home and 2) it's pretty darn consistent.

Sure, we can get a pizza most places we go but you never really know what you are going to get (clams and corn on the "meat lovers"? Yeah, that happened). If you are looking to order favorite foods from home it is best to have your expectations set low; it often comes out at best with something not quite right, and at worst just all wrong. But at McDonalds that quarter pounder and French fries is about the same where ever you go (except of course at places that don't serve beef, then you've got interesting new things to try like the McVeggie. It's also fun to see the local additions - taro pies in Taiwan for example). I can order my Starbucks drink, in English no less, anywhere and I know exactly what I'm getting. So while it's not necessarily what we'd consider good food, or the food we miss the most, it is familiar and there is something comforting in that.