Wednesday, March 05, 2008


Bet likes to keep certain things in the freezer, an object of furniture located directly underneath my refrigerator. It's an object I never, ever use. This is partly because the thing is just too small to hold much. It's constructed as a chest of shallow drawers, restricting its available space while also rendering anything placed there one step further from immediate detection. She likes to hide our bread and other food items, defying prediction, away in there. Today, while making space for the leftovers from last night's Vietnamese buffet, an embarrassment of courses we'd asked Ms. Hương to cook up as a local culinary sampler for our guest, Bet discovered a very old half-can of garbanzo beans. This is a mystery to me, though whether it's related to the actions of our cook or to the previous owners of our second refrigeration unit in four months, I don't know. I hope the latter, since these mystery beans were further out-of-date than I'd comfortably swallow in light of the short time Ms. Hương's been working with us. The only other thing of culinary note today: we met Sunshine at the Rex Hotel after her language classes tonight. The Rex is a nice place to take visitors because it has a pretty, plant-lined fifth-floor rooftop dining area overlooking Le Loi Street just southwest of Saigon's French Colonial Opera House--though we were relegated to a table far enough from the railing to obscure our tourism. The only mystery here: why, with a waiter per table gathered on that rooftop, is the service at the Rex always so dismal? I always love my food--assuming I can catch someone's attention to bring it to me. Next week's culinary mystery: why are all these old lunches hidden in the freezer? Stay tuned. [Cavin]

Then, a 0 sided conversation ensued...

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