Our cleanup after Saturday’s fire was thorough. We even threw out any open packages of food (this is a great reason not to have open shelving in the kitchen) because the sand from the fire extinguisher was absolutely everywhere. As you might imagine, we were left with very little food in the house; we ate at restaurants for the rest of the weekend—in between cleanup efforts.
Everyone was exhausted this morning, but we forged ahead with school anyway. The sky was overcast and it drizzled on and off all day; but despite the weather, Mr. December and I rode our bikes down to the Western-food supermarket to stock up on groceries.
You know what’s weird? Even though Hoi An has an impressive number of bike paths and special lanes, Google Maps insists that there’s no cycling information. To find a route that didn’t go down all the major streets I had to ask Google for walking directions. Once we crossed over the river, we were on car-free paths until the last block before the store. Idyllic rice paddies stretched out all around us, water buffalo grazed, and motorcycles honked as they zipped past us.
I went to the housewares store next to the supermarket to pick up a few things this house lacks—cleaning cloths, shampoo, and tea towels, among other things—and the young woman at the counter asked me why I wasn’t cold wearing just a long-sleeve t-shirt (for the record, it was 20 degrees celsius at the time.) Anyhow, I responded that as a Canadian, I see 20 degrees as slightly cool summer weather. She looked at me incredulously, shook her head, and shivered.
Our ride was about 10K, round trip. On the way back we biked along the riverfront path that goes right past our house. It looks like someone had grand plans for this neighbourhood—the stone path lined with palm trees, the iron railing at the edge, and the many smaller paths leading from the river to the street at regular intervals all suggest an upscale neighbourhood—before COVID came in, shut everything down, and got rid of all the tourists. It’s a shame—it would have been stunning, with the view of the river. I wonder who will restart the project, and when?
It seems that I demonstrated poor judgment tonight: in an effort to be efficient and not mess up too many pots, I put the pasta and the sauce in the rice cooker together. It worked beautifully—but apparently N doesn’t like the sauce, so he stood up and walked out of dinner because there was no plain pasta for him. Oops. That’ll learn me.
This week’s challenge: find a place to dry our laundry that doesn’t leave it smelling like mildew. Today I tried hanging it from the back edge of the metal stairs to the roof. After ten hours, it’s still damp. Why doesn’t anybody sell clotheslines in this town?