Lined up along the northern edge of Dumaguete’s Rizal Boulevard is a section of rather small plastic tables and chairs. This diminutive dining area is catered to by a number of locals serving up fried tempura and balut (crunchy, fertilized duck eggs complete with small bones and feathers). The other day, Michell and I decided to head down and sample some of the local fare (sans bloody duck eggs). The first thing you notice is that the chairs are VERY small. I am not a big guy – 5 foot 10 and a bit under 200 lbs – but you soon realize that these seats were not designed for larger folk of the Caucasian persuasion. Come to think of it, I have never seen a foreigner eating there. I am sure they do or have, I just haven’t seen it.
Anyhoo. Michell and I ordered 10 pieces of tempura for 40 pesos. The guy we chose as our chef actually
had a stick frying in the pan as we arrived. Kinda weird, but he took it out before tossing in the pieces of mostly frozen tempura. We took our seats (with some difficulty on my part) and soon enough the steaming morsels were placed before us. I dug in and was surprised to find that the tempura was basically just fried flour. Coming from the West, tempura was usually fish or squid or veggies. Still though, one has to adapt, and I didn’t have any difficulty wolfing down my portion of the meal. It was OK but nothing to write home about (even though I am). If I ever gather real courage – which I doubt – I will try the balut/fertilized duck eggs – little feathers, bones, eyeballs and all.
Yummy fried bread sticks!
Michell was a little grumpy that night, imagining she was picking her teeth with my spine……
In other news, my sweet Pagadian Princess got here first paycheck! This I know because she texted me a photo of it at 4 in the morning (she is presently working 4 AM to 1 PM). She is, of course, very proud and I am sure she will be showing off her new shoe collection to me very soon. (Just kidding, sweetie.)
Yippee. We are now DINK’s – dual income, no kids. A bit of the American dream nestled away here in the south Pacific. 🙂
In other news, Michell and I seem to have finally found a home. After searching the back roads and byways of Dumaguete for three hours yesterday morning, I took a break at MacDonald’s (best coffee in the city) and ran into an expat that is returning to the US on June 18th. He said he was renting a house in a safe neighborhood nearby and stated that it was only 10,000 pesos a month – about $250 USD. I stopped by a few hours later and was very impressed. It had a wall and gate, security grates on the windows, air conditioning in the two bedrooms, and provision for a hot water heater in the shower. It wasn’t a big house or possessed of a big yard, but it was mostly perfect. I say mostly, because of the pinkness of the entire structure. Salmon (pink) is a pretty popular color here in the Phils, and this house was yet another stunning example of this seductive shade. But wait, it didn’t stop there. The interior tile was also a light shade of “salmon,” the bathroom continued with this colorful theme, and even the sofa, love seats and curtains were a fascinating shade of pink. I didn’t ask, but the expat finally supplied that his asawa (wife) had done the decorating. Best of all, he was leaving all of his furniture and appliances for a rock bottom price (half of what he purchased it for two years ago). The stuff was all in good shape, so I agreed to take on his stuff. I later showed the house to Michell after she got off work, and of course she absolutely loved it. There’s even a garden area in the back for her green thumb and bananas, pineapples and malunggay trees (which are supposed to be super healthy).
So come June 20th, Michell and I will basically be moving into Hello Kitty’s dream house.
No photos of it, but this is kinda close:
Totally gangster crib…….
Fried Flour Tempura, Sugar Momma’s and Pink Houses: It’s more fun in the Philippines!
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