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Monday, February 08, 2010

The Incredible Edible Egg

Sept 27/09

My heart is racing! I have just come back from one of Argentina's most popular destinations. It is a destination that host people of all backgrounds on a weekly basis. Where is this place? It's Carrefore, the local super market! I went shopping here for the first time ever today. I had been in here a few times before but this is my first official grocery shopping trip. And what a trip it was! One thing you need to know about this super market is that it is like a global village. My friends at the residence here told me that it's got stuff from around the world and they weren't kidding! Never in my life have I gone to a grocery store and seen ingrediants from any place you can name on this planet.

There was Dulce du leche, coconut milk from Brasil as well as some home grown North American brands. I was so dumbfounded that I must have spent the same amount of time browsing around there as I do in some of the museums and tourist sites. In the end I picked up some humble but very essential items such as water with fizz (I'm officially addicted), activia (very important item on my grocery list...there is no way I am letting indigestion spoil my Argentinean adventure), eggs etc. In all I must have been in this grocery store almost 2 hrs and came out with only a few items simply because I was in awe of the variety that was available (not because I am mentally retarded when it comes to grocery shopping)

After my shopping excursion, I came back to the residence to enjoy my spoils. I felt like a pirate with a plastic bag full of my booty! The first thing I did was tear into a pre-made sandwich with salami, bread, and cheese. When that wasn't enough, it was time for me to turn to good old fashioned friend eggs. In order to do that, I would have to make friends with the stove top that the residence provided. Up until this moment, I haven't used the the stovetop ever. I always have supper at Glady's house and I can tell you that she and I are a match made in heaven. She loves to cook and I don't. I can teach english and she wants to learn english. So our times together are beautiful collaboration of english lessons and a yummy supper. Anyway, back to my attempts at cooking. I did what anyone else at home would do, I took out a frying pan, put some butter on and I turned the dial. Nothing happened. I kept waiting, thinking that maybe it is taking an extra long time. My eggs just sat mocking me and remaining nothing but a transparent liquid with a yellow yolk in the centre. So I worked up the courage to gently and quickly touch the element to see if it was even hot. It was cold as the weather outside. And I wanted to state again that I am in NO WAY mentally handicapped. Just wanted to clarify that point :)

Luckily one of the other students was walking by and I told him that I didn't know how to use the stove. It was then that he turned my attention to some matches and told me that after I turn the gas on, I have to light a match and put it on the burner. He demonstrated everything and as soon as he did, my eggs started to turn a beautiful white color. And once again I began to feel confidence rise back in me that I can use simple kitchen elements and won't suffer the fate of shrivelling up like a prune and dying in a foreign country due to starvation that comes with lack of elementary cooking skills.......

I decided to throw another egg into the pan so I cracked the 2nd egg on the pan but unfortunately as I cracked the egg, I ended up cracking the entire egg and it missed the pan entirely. This was turning out wonderfully, one egg that I just bought from the super market was cooking so well that it was by now clinging to the wall of the pan. I wound up needing a spatula to scrape the remains of what I called lunch onto a plate. While the other egg was quickly oozing all over the stove like an olympic runner trying to make the 100 meter dash.

If I was a contestant on Hell's Kitchen, I think that Gordan Ramsey would be serving ME for dinner to the guest by now. Deciding to not focus at my sorry attempt to make what I call lunch, I sat down and ate what remained of the egg. The poor thing looked like it had been through the war and the great depression. At least in my stomach it would have a decent burial. But it wasn't over yet, I was still hungry. it was time for another egg. Once again, I buttered the pan, turned on the gas and somehow managed to light a flame and get it going without endangering any of the other residents. So far so good. I cracked an egg on the pan and instead of breaking apart in my hand, it landed beautifully in the middle of the pan and began to change into a lovely white color. And in that way, lunch was served :)

It was good to know that I had fueled up properly because tomorrow is a big day. Tomorrow, Gladys and I are going to the land of Narnia. And no, we don't have to enter in through the back of a wardrobe to get there. Part of my teaching her english is to use movies with spanish subtitles so she can see how the english language is used. And I want to tell you that this is one brave and gutsy woman. She always wants to try something that would be totally difficult for her.

On a recent lesson she wanted to watch one of the sermons I had on my computer. The sermon was by Charlotte Scanlon-Gambil of Abundant life church in Bradford, England. And I can also tell you that it was during that lesson that I found out that I had a gift for translating sermons for someone who speaks spanish! Later, after the lesson I asked her if it was difficult and indeed it was. Firstly that Charlotte's accent is british. She speaks very quickly and uses large words in the english language that are less often used, the kind you only hear in church or when reading the BibleBut it always warms my heart to see someone want to try to do something that would be challenging. I had told her that the Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe would be challenging as opposed to other movies that I have but she really wants to do it. And I can't tell you what an honor it's going to be able to introduce someone to one of the most timeless, classics of all time. Here in South America, believe it or not, nobody really knows or has heard of that story. So tomorrow is all about finding Narnia........

Amorous Alpacas

Amorous Alpacas