Sweet and Sour Cat Anyone?

This morning I read a crazy Newsweek article that talks about chompin’ on some feline friends right here in my very own backyard.  The pet market mentioned in this story is not too far away and is one I have strolled through.  Here are a couple paragraphs directly from the source.  You can read the rest of the report by clicking on the link at the bottom.  Bon appetit! 

Here in China, animals do fall victim to bad pet food—and a lot worse. Such as pets as food, which animal lovers apparently discovered earlier this year in a market in Tianjin. Many cats sold in the Hebei District pet market are bought by entrepreneurs who ship them to the southern province of Guangdong, where the felines wind up as restaurant fare. (Guangdong residents are notorious for eating “anything with four legs, except for the kitchen table,” as a proverb goes. One popular dish of sautéed snake and cat is called "the dragon battling the tiger.")

So when pet cats belonging to Tianjin residents started going missing with unusual frequency, owners became suspicious. Earlier this year the discovery of fresh cat entrails near the gate of the pet market seemed to confirm their fears. Convinced their kitties had become cuisine, up to 100 cat owners gathered at the market gate on Feb. 11, hoping to rescue any remaining live felines. Their entry was blocked by dozens of security guards. Then, some 80 police showed up to prevent a fight between vendors and pet owners. When she heard of the fracas, Beijing animal activist Lu Di hired a truck and arranged for the animals to be brought to the Chinese capital. "We rescued 415 cats who would have been killed," says Lu, an octogenarian whose Little Pet Protection Association cares for abandoned and traumatized animals.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18096481/site/newsweek/

Another Special Day

Although Grace’s  was over a week ago, it was still a very special day.  This morning as I scarfed down on some mao dou (hairy soybeans), out popped a white worm.    Mmmm.  What a way to start your day.  Yes, I was highly disgusted, but fortunately the guy was dead.  The sucker was campin’out in the pod when it got boiled a couple days ago.  Something very similar actually happened to me back in May.  While I was gettin’ my grub on at a location I won’t disclose, I found a little maggot that got baked in the roll I had just chomped on.  That one really gave me the shivers.  Mmmm.  Protein. 

Does Anyone Want the Head?

Tonight Megan, yours truly, and a couple of her former students ate at a local hole in the wall called 1,2, 3.  We really like this Sichuan restaurant ’cause the place is close, the people are friendly, and of course the food is cheap and good.  A dish that often comes to our table that we decided to order tonight was suan cai yu (sour vegetable fish).  Sarah got some of the bone stuck in her throat which made for an interesting event.  The winner has to go to Helen though.  Near the end of our meal she asked us if we wanted to eat the fish head.  We all decided to pass on this honor which apparently can help one become more clever.  I think Helen is going to be lots smarter ’cause with the exception of the bones, that fist sized head was all gobbled up.  Yum, yum to the tum, tum.

Rabbits and Bird’s Spit

On our recent outing to Vietnam, I decided to try some new dishes I’ve never consumed before.  One item that I can add to my bizarre food list is bunny.  Maybe that isn’t very odd to many, but I did drink something called Bird’s Nest.  The ingredients include fungus and bird’s nest.  What that meant I didn’t exactly know so I decided to some research today.  I came to find out that this drink’s main ingredient is actually the nest of a swallow bird or swift.  These birds regurgitate long, thin gelatinous strands from their salivary glands under their tongues.  These strands play an important role in making their special nests.  Oh yeah – it’s true, it’s true!

Weasel Poo and Coffee

Last night Megan and I got back from Vietnam.  We had a most excellent time, and we highly recommend visiting this beautiful nation.  My view of the country was rather off before the trip so I am glad I have a better understanding of this nation.  Of course one can only learn so much in less than two weeks time, but it was a very educational trip nevertheless.  One of my many highlights was the purchase of an extremely high grade of Vietnamese coffee called chon.  It is made of the beans that are fed to a certain species of weasel and later collected from the weasel’s excrement (also known as a turd).  I had some this morning and know the caffeine will give me the energy I need so I won’t be pooped out.  Oh yeah- it’s true, it’s true!

A New Shopping Complex

Tonight Megan and I went grocery shoppin’ at E-Mart.  It’s the anchor store at a nearby mall that includes several big name stores like Northface, OshKosh B’Gosh and Esprit.  We were hopin’ to find a high chair and curtain rod for Grace’s room, but we came away empty handed.  I did purchase some fun new snack items though – Five Flavored Fish Lay’s potato chips and Future Cola.  Yes, fish flavored potato chips.  Believe it or not, the chips were actually okay.  In fact, they’re better than the coke knockoff.  The drink was funky, but they do have a winner of a slogan – Future will be better.  Cool.