Thursday, September 23, 2010

Mutton Stew

Today I woke up late around 9 am to a runny nose and thought it would be a perfect day to make a chicken noodle soup with Chinese characteristics- a chicken's head, feet, tofu, and bean sprouts.  As the stock was simmering, I got a message that my waiban (foreign affairs officer) had invited us to lunch.  We spent 3 hours eating a mutton stew.  It reminded me of one of my last meals in Africa, a mutton head stew which I tried to carefully maneuver as not to pull out the eye socket with an eyeball still attached.  I didn't mind the brains, but an eyeball?  It just seemed so squishy and round making my mouth shudder at the thought of popping one with my teeth.  In today's stew though there were no brains and no eyeballs.  It had large chunks of bones from the leg.  Too big to eat with chopsticks, we were given plastic gloves to keep our hands clean and plastic straws to suck out the marrow.

Tonight there is a concert being performed by a visiting choir from Poland.  I wonder what kind of music they will sing.  The Chinese choirs that I have listened to often perform traditional and politically patriotic songs.

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