Somehow in the month that we have been here we have not managed to have crispy catfish salad (yam pla-duk fu). How this is possible, I don’t know. But here I will explain how you can have this fine dish for yourself. First what you do is you go to the market and you buy a bag with all the ingredients for crispy catfish salad in it. It looks like this:
You take that home, obviously. Then get a bowl. At the bottom of the bowl stick the lettuce. Then pour the little baggie of fried catfish and peanuts on top of that. Then pour the little baggie of mango and onion and cilantro on top of that. Finally pour the baggie of fish sauce, chili, and lime juice over the top of that. What you end up with looks like this:
You have just made yourself a fine lunch. Congratulate yourself!
We’ve all been a little under the weather this week. I brought home a nasty cough from school and thoughtfully spread it around. Mid-week, when I was still feeling quite hazy, I attended my first wai kru ceremony. (I was also–unbeknownst to me until I arrived at the assembly hall!–the special guest speaker. I’m grateful to my second grade teacher, Mrs. Mallory, for giving me some good anecdotes to work from.) I don’t know how traditional our ceremony was–there was a special commendation for the best PowerPoint explaining the symbolism behind the flowers used in wai kru–but I enjoyed it. You can see my lovely flowers below.
It’s a lotus that I found down the street and it’s starting to bloom:
The plant also has fish living in its pot: they are two guppies of uncertain variety, named by the baby, confusingly, Harriet and Mister Pendleton. They are shy and my phone is not very good at photographing them; also, fish being what they are, and the baby’s fish-caring skills being what they are, they may not be long for this world. But rest assured that they are there.