Monday, October 31, 2011

Just enough

Everything in Vietnam seems to be just different enough... to not work as I hope or would like.

...Like marshmallows not melting when I am trying to make rice krispie treats.

After seeing Kellogg's Rice Krispies cereal for over 200,000 dong (over $10.00 USD) I decided that I would continue the search for some generic almost-rice-krispies.

Going grocery shopping means you go to 4 different stores... because each one carries something different.

...Then you have to try to remember which store has each item for next time.

...But next time... that item that you had been so happy to find is gone - like the yogurt at Citi Mart!

Anyway - I did find some generic rice krispies in another convenience store... these were 50,000 dong (about $2.50 USD) - perfect!

I even found some marshmallows.

So... rice krispie treats should be relatively easy... very delicious... and a wonderful feel-good treat.

Except - I forgot that everything here is different just enough to not work how I'd like it to... like the marshmallows not wanting to melt.

I've never had to use potholders when making rice krispie treats - but I microwaved those marshmallows so many times last night that the bowl was too hot to hold!


It's a bit scary to think of what these things must be made of... to not melt after over 10 minutes in a microwave.

I've ended up with a bowlful of rice krispie coated marshmallows... close enough??  :P

Although I covered it with saran wrap last night, I find my treat this morning to be rock hard... and extremely rubbery when I do try to chew through... FAIL.

And of course I have an extra bag of these rubbery non-melting marshmallows because I figured it was a brilliant idea to be able to make rice krispie treats (should be soooo easy) and, being smart and knowing that what is in the store one day might not be there the next, I stocked up...

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Weekend Happenings

Saturday morning I met up with a few teachers from the middle school for breakfast at Jaspas.

Not only does Jaspas have good food... but they have Buy One Get One Free for breakfasts on the weekend AND free refills on coffee-ish drinks. Perrrrfect.  :)

It was myself, Sarah, Donna (art teacher), Shelly (math teacher), and Shelly's 3-year old daughter, Sienna. Sienna is adorable.  :)

Her mango smoothie was hugely delicious!

Donna's so good with her.  :) 

This is the beautiful polka-dotted-stripe flower that Sienna and I made together. 

Where's some more room for coloring?? 

Cutest passenger on a scooter in Saigon, right here. 

Today (Sunday) I met up with Kat - my lovely Swedish friend.
After a nice breakfast at Elbow Room we went by the post office and then came upon this cute little cupcake shop. 

I love the chairs painted on the wall above the bench.  :)

Vietnamese coffee and ...cupcakes anyone?!

 Cool Cupcake Cat.

Whisk lights (...see what I mean?? - CUTE!)

After cupcakes, we went fabric shopping for a bit near my place. I really like the Tan Dinh Market... and the fact that Fabric Shop Street is right across from the market.

Happy Halloween from AIS!

Mid-week, I arrived back to the middle school from a field trip and found the study hall kids decorating the library - I loved it!

Many students would open the door a crack and peek inside... either not sure whether the library was open or not sure they wanted to come in to the scaaaaary new haunted library.  :P

We celebrated Halloween Friday afternoon... I was surprised to see that the majority of students dressed as scary/gory... not many character costumes.

Witches took over the library.

 Cheering on the apple dunking station!

Peace back at ya Starfire!


GO!  (haha... face right to the bottom of the bowl.) 

Mummy station. 

Risa  :)

Halloween Assembly

The final students in the costume competition - a mix of Most Creative / Most Original / and Funniest.

Ms. Donna (art teacher) trying to figure which of her advisory students is under the mask.

Mr. Arunsky (English and ESL) is Towlie from South Park. 

Larry dressed up as a nerd. 

Coolest costume of the day! - and won Most Original... Alvin made this box using his iPod as the mouth... he programmed it to move and change mouths whenever he would talk - fabulous!

A scary number of students did not notice a difference to my hair from any other day! To them, my hair is crazy no matter if it's "normal"  or brushed out like this. They just can't figure it out. (Thank goodness some of them DID notice... and they loved the first introduction of my "big hair" to Vietnam!)

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Malaysian food... mmmm...

During my week in different parts of Malaysia, I learned that I love Malaysian food.   :)

(...but this was probably my least favorite, haha... noodles and veggies at the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Center. It was ok but didn't compare to our other meals through the week; it was too oily and not enough spice-oomf.) We had similar meals to this at the place we stayed in Borneo - The Sepilok Jungle Resort - and those were all delicious! (I just forgot to get pictures.)  :P

Lunch in the Kuala Lumpur LCCT airport - delicious! Rice, veggies ("buck choi"), and tempeh (soy beans fermented in banana leaves) ...And this plateful cost only 4.50 in ringott (about $1.20 USD).

Mmmm getting fresh coconut juice at the bottom of the Terjun Waterfall in Langkawi.


Yes, please.  :)

At Champor Champor (Malay for "all mixed up") - deeeelicious dinner! Starting out with tofu sate (above).

And then we split thai red curry and pegiri (sp??) curry :)

Breakfast at a street warung in Langkawi... rice, fried egg, greens, and some delicously spiced vegetable that I told Riki, "If I were in the U.S. I would think this was cooked celery."

Riki replied... "Oh! It probably is celery!"

Haha... I guess I'm getting used to this other-side-of-the-world thing and didn't even think there would be celery.

Mmmmm lunch in Little India, Kuala Lumpur. Eaten traditionally off of banana leaves and with our hands. THIS was my favorite meal.   :D
AND my teh tahrik tea in the background! (Malaysian CHAI!!)

Indian desserts! Delicious... especially with tea.  

Traveling with Riki and Saleshni was wonderful. I love these two girls. They're experienced travelers and experienced in this part of the world -- and culture... I learned so much from these two. Riki's first language was Malay (growing up in Indonesia) and Saleshni is fluent as well. My first thought when hearing someone speaking Malay --the flight attendant on our first flight to Kuala Lumpur-- was: "Wow! What a fun language!" Even their being vegetarians taught me a lot and I really enjoyed our trip together. This week back at work I've realized that I miss them terribly - them being at the elementary school and me at the middle school. I look forward to future trips!

The one phrase in Malay that I learned (and made great use of during our trip) is terimah kasih, which means thank you! 

Friday, October 28, 2011

Odds and Ends of Love from Malaysia

Below are some miscellaneous photos from my trip last week, which I love for different reasons...

Haha... yes, please make sure to keep the rubbish store clean! 

Pretty flower flattened on the ground. 

Sandakan, Borneo airport! 

Rock on Langkawi Island. 

Sand on Langkawi Island. 

Restaurant floor, Langkawi Island.

Foot Reflexology poster - offered at the top of the Langkawi cable car.

Mmmm Mexican food in Kuala Lumpur! 

Mack Daddy with the popped collar. Sheesh.  :P