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16 August: Sunday

La Quinta, California: So I neglected to recognize a Big Moment on this Virus Blog: As of Wednesday (the 12th), I have prepared 150 dinners in a row. (I am sure many of you are on the same course, so you will not be impressed.) On a normal month, we would have gone out for dinner at least twice (or taken the golf cart up the MCC clubhouse for a drink/snack), and out for lunch at least twice PER WEEK. Pandemic changes everything. I'm reaching the end of my recipe repertoire. Thank goodness, my cookbooks have been returned to me. Inspiration!

We walked today, but not together. It was 109 degrees today in La Quinta, and the humidity was brutal (rare!) DT left the house before me, and ran quite a bit. I walked three miles (still trying to figure-out the best route in this non-circular country club), listening to past-due podcasts, and did not even see David on my route today!

I did, however, see another beautiful view of the mountains from a tee box. Not sure which hole this is quite yet. Still have not played the course. Gotta get on this. In our spare time. We are paying dues to a golf course we have yet to play!

Another healthy salad for lunch today. Yeah, us! I didn't finish my cod, nor green beans, last night, so it all went into a salad with greens (that we did not use from yesterday's lunch salad), along with olives, tomatoes, more garbanzo beans, and whatever else was in the fridge.

Don't waste food.

BIG EXCITEMENT! Dave found a wall switch that operates a light UNDER the Paris bathroom vanity. Mood lighting in our powder room.

The Mona Lisa will be so happy.

Paris wasn't the only city visited this week. We also went to Bangkok. Back in the day, when we lived in Taipei (and Kathy and Woody lived in Bangkok) we would visit Thailand quite often. Lisa was still in pre-school/kinder, so we we could remove her from class for a few days without fear of her not being able to get into college. Long weekends with Kathy & Woody are some of our favorite memories of trips to Thailand.

Kelsey & Lisa - age 5

These girls turn 39 this summer. They each have had two children.

Kelsey, Kari, Lisa & Katie in Bangkok. We still have the Grover doll... the Glow Worm doll is history. I think this photo is from a sleep-over at our hotel room at the Nai Lert Hotel. (Photo is dated 25 July 1986)

The Nai Lert hotel is also famous for a fertility shrine (kinda hidden in the back garden of the hotel, next to a dodgy canal) with hundreds (hundreds!) of penis statues and phallic carvings, hopeful to cause pregnancy to devotees. Try explaining giant phallic carvings to your five year old.


While unpacking, I found two identical 16-inch blue silk pillow covers, still in the original packaging, from Jim Thompson. I must have purchased the throw pillow covers on a visit to Bangkok, from the original store on 9 Surawong Road? 1986? I ordered down-alternative pillows to fill the two beautiful blue pillow covers, and they now grace the sofa in our family room. Several pillows in this house are covered with Jim Thompson silk. Our dining room chairs are covered in Jim Thompson silk. These items are all over 30 years old and still going strong. An iconic figure in Southeast Asia, Mr. Thompson's disappearance is still a mystery.

Though our menu tonight was Asian-inspired, our appetizer was anything but. I made a quick dip, using sour cream, onion powder, chopped black olives and fresh dill - served with Ruffles (Ruffles have ridges). Delicious. Easy.

A 1.5 pound flank steak was marinated in a mixture of 1/2 cup freshly-squeezed lime juice, 1 Tablespoon sugar, 1 teaspoon dried chili flakes, 3 cloves minced garlic (I used Dorot), 1 Tablespoon freshly grated ginger root, 1/4 cup soy sauce (low-sodium), and 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil. 

Due to all the lime juice, the steak was only marinated in the sauce for about 90 minutes. It was so good. DT is still figuring-out the new grill, so the beef was quite a bit under-cooked for me. No doubt, another salad for tomorrow?

Cucumber salad rounded-out the meal.

Korean-inspired cucumbers

Until my next update, I remain, your Bangkok correspondent.

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