Monday, July 16

New Foods & Foot Binding

Every morning, we all go downstairs to the restaurant located in the lobby. Our original arrangement with the condo was two free adult breakfast buffets. Nicholas was already free, because he is under the age requirement. So, that meant we'd have to pay for both Sydney & Samuel's breakfasts, if we chose to eat at the restaurant. However, Sammy somehow finagled a deal for us, which ended up getting 2 additional kid buffets for free. (When it comes to food, Sammy gets serious!!) So, for the remainder of our stay here at this condominium, our entire family gets to eat breakfast entirely free at the restaurant downstairs. At first, we weren't thrilled about this buffet, because they didn't have waffles, like they had at the hotel Sammy & I stayed in last month. However, being that it's FREE, we're not complaining. We have learned to try new foods, which has been exciting, for the most part. Even the kids are trying new foods (without knowing it)! Here are some of the different foods we've tasted recently:

* Carrot & cumin pancakes (We didn't tell the kids they had carrots or cumin in them, but smothered with butter & syrup, the kids gobbled them up!)
* Pistachio pancakes (Same concept... although the kids could see the pistachio nuts in them, I don't think they minded.)
* Curried cauliflower (I tried this & it was REALLY good! One thing to realize is that Filipinos also serve what we would typically consider lunch or supper dishes for breakfast. It is very common to see lasagna, tortellini, green salads, etc. on the breakfast buffets.)
* Half a hard boiled egg smothered in Indian spices (They had a fancy name for this dish, but I forgot. But I did try it at the urging of the chef & it was very good.)
* Dried mangoes (These aren't that unusual, but my kids had never had them before & Nicholas LOVES them!)

I'm sure I'll think of more later. I've made it a point to try just a little of something different every time I go. Sometimes I find a winner... sometimes not!

A couple of days ago, Sammy's boss's wife made appointments for all 3 of the TI wives here to get foot scrubs & pedicures. I'd had a pedicure done at this particular salon, but never a foot scrub. So, I was looking forward to trying something new. The foot scrub was WONDERFUL!!! The guy worked on my feet & lower legs for about an hour... massaging, scrubbing, lotioning, etc, etc. After a while, he slathered on something that smelled very similar to BENGAY. After he slathered it on each foot, he tightly wrapped a terrycloth towel around them. He tucked in the ends of the towel so that it was securely snug. While he was doing it, I was reminded of the Chinese process of foot binding that we recently read about in one of our latest book club choices, Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See. Although this process was not nearly as painful, I did wince a little at how tightly the towel squeezed my foot. It made me so sad to think that so many young girls endured this incredibly painful process in order to fit into Chinese society. So hard to comprehend!

We're off to try Pizza Hut for lunch today! I'll post about that later!