Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Sorta Like Home
There are very few foreigners here. Including Brian, there are three Americans that I know here. There are three British subjects I also know. From there, the English gets less native. I know a good number of Chinese people who speak excellent English, and quite a few whose skills need some honing. Sometimes I just need to talk to an American, so I can mutter rapidly the slangy stuff that is our native tongue.
In the US, I never ate at McDonald's. Here, it seems to be a weekly event, just to give myself the salty, fried starchy stuff that is our native cuisine.
There are some things from America you can get here, but they seem kind of random: Jack Daniels, Jim Beam, Pabst, Snickers, Oreos, Heinz Ketchup, Duracell batteries, Gillete shaving products, Pantene, Avon, and probably a few more chemical cosmetics and cleaners. That's about it. Butter and cheese are mostly non existent, and their absence has contributed greatly to my losing 15 pounds in the last 4 months. No chili powder or oregano. No tortillas. No tonic, although we could probably get some shipped from Hong Kong.
However, we have an endless variety of seafood, tropical fruit, veggies, and all the best food that 5,000 years of cooking tradition can bring. They make good beer, and since we border Russia you can get good vodka for a decent price. Also the Jack Daniels is about 30% cheaper than at home due to the lack of sin tax.
However, most of what we don't have here, we can do without or substitute something else. I found I can make passable marinara sauce, especially since we have year round fresh tomatoes. We just serve it on ramen noodles.
Posted by emsique at 9:51 PM