If your Life of Elegant Leisure Check-list does not include "Bunko Night with Embassy Ladies and Diplomat Wives" you're missing the whole point.
Mine, naturally, did include it and I can now check it off. We played last night and Bronwyn and I both came home with prizes and, I'm just going to say it even though it wasn't officially recognized, the sweet victory of bringing the best treat. Homemade peach jam and cheesy scones. Score! I am not competitive by nature and I feel like I'm a gracious player and loser. But I do love to win.
While we're sort of on the subject of food, let's talk grocery shopping. There are a few options here: 1.) the embassy commissary where we can get some common American products, 2.) the produce market where we get the fruits and veggies, and 3.) Carrefour, the international Wal-mart. I've been twice to Carrefour, once during Ramadan and once after. It was like the difference between the population of North Dakota and the population of India. Madhouse. But a glorious one. And I've been twice to the produce market, this last time all by myself. The guy helping out spoke a little English but I still had to play a bit of charades with him. After he was done bagging up what I'm pretty sure was some form of pumpkin he offered me this mystery fruit. It was about the size and shape of a large olive, it had smooth dark red skin and he motioned for me to just bite into it. Why not? (I'm not writing to you from my cell in an opium den so you know it ended well) (I'm not sure where it comes from but I've always had this notion that all international scrapes end in an opium den. If I do get in scrape (which I won't, Mom) and don't end up in an opium den, I'm going to be a little disappointed.) It was sweet and had the consistancy of a not-quite-ripe apple. Crisp and crunchy. I asked him what it was but he didn't understand, "What is this called?" or "What is the name?" or "Name?" or the universal sign for "What is this?" (point to thing, furrow brow, shrug shoulders). So I had to dig deep into my non-existant French to come up with the word for name and all I could think of was nomme de plume so I said "nomme" and did the aforementioned shrugging and that did the trick. It was a jujube.
I can now check off "Eat exotic fruit offered to me by a stranger in a foreign land" from my list.