It is better to conquer yourself than to win a thousand battles. Then the victory is yours. It cannot be taken from you, not by angels or by demons, heaven or hell.
-- The Buddha
I think our yule celebration will be surviving to the new year. We get 4 new years, by the way. Western, Thai, Hmong and Chinese.
Today is Hmong new year. This is a bit weird. The new year day is not fixed but selected by village elders by general concensus to be the most auspicious day. Yunee is cooking great mounds of food which, as it will be served at her mothers amidst chicken and pig poo, I will not eat. The village, which has a resident population of about 100 will suddenly sprout about 200-300 beautiful women who hide from the place the rest of the year.
Yunee is experimenting in cooking. Combining western recipies and Thai. Is cranking out some very strange dishes. Armed with an electric wok and toaster oven she is quite formidable. One never knows what to expect. You can translate that roughly as Thai cuisine being some 45,000 basic dishes, and western being the power of X. Near infinite variables. Last night she made french toast using french bread. After all, that makes sense. The long stick of bread. Little near circular slices. Since she had a bowl of egg goop, she then dipped the chicken in it. One should not ask questions such as why is the chicken coated in egg. On a plus note, her forays into Mexican food are surprisingly tasty. Thai's like their food, if anything, hotter than Mexican, with many more kinds of spices.She took some lowly tortillas and turned them into mini Mexican pizzas, making her own idea of what tomato sauce should be. The result was dangerous, but seriously yummy. Errm, upon reflection that would be a Thai-New York readapted to Italian-Mexican dish? It's fun to watch her experiment as the results only costs a few cents.
Two houses, Lanna style, stand about 15 feet apart. No other houses within 100 yards. Rice fields all round. The houses are mirror images of each other. Ours is the left. On the south side is a Jack fruit tree, which shades somewhat the house, and a smaller tree. Between these two an old iron pipe bridges, from which hang about 15 neglected orchid plants. Towards the front of the house on the south are a motley crew of about 15 banana trees. One has a flower. The problem with banana trees is when you get fruit, you get fruit. Once ripe, over the course of a couple or three weeks, you get about 50-100 pounds of bananas. Nobody, no family, can eat that many bananas. So, growing bananas is always feast or famine. Since they inundate reality, they sell for very little in the markets.
Our front yard is overrun with toads. Rescuees from the local market I have turned loose. We have a garden in front, flowery pretty, which I water and groom (maim). Thai trimming of bushes, trees, etc, nearly always involves a machete.
The denizens of the house include dozens of mice in the attic, about 50 geckos, and several thousand assorted insects and arachnids. Unfortunately the Loxosceles is among these. I have considered giving the house the chlorine gas treatment, boiling a gallon of bleach with doors and windows closed, to rid the place of them but that would also kill the geckos and most likely leave dozens of rodent corpses in the attic.