Friday, August 15, 2008
Wailing at a Welsh graveyard + Perky Glass Noodle Salad
There's no place as peaceful, quiet and mysterious as a cemetery. You wonder about the lives represented by every gravestone. You ruminate on the adventures and misadventures of those who died young. You think about the meaning of those lives that had gone on before you came traipsing about. So many of us -- how much meaning can we each create?
On a recent trip to Wales, my other half and I chanced upon the remains of a church with a graveyard around it. The church tower had ivy growing on two sides of its rough-hewn walls. It seemed to be in disuse; there was no signboard proffering its name.
Creeper plants partially shrouded the gravestones of Celtic design and leaves entombed some. The dead were safe from the worry and hassle of everyday life. They were no longer concerned by the whys and wherefores of the living. You wonder if they have indeed gone on to a better place.
You ponder on the possibility that life is a mere dream from which you awake when you pass on.
You wonder if death is only a gateway to an infinite cosmos.
After all that morbidity, how about some nudity? (Hah, awake now?!) Here's a pic of a furry friend I met at Bute Park in Cardiff. Squirrels are said to be only rats with couture and great public relations skills.
And now I tickle your tastebuds, dear reader, with a Perky Glass Noodle Salad recipe:
a handful of dried glass noodles, soaked 10 mins in freshly boiled water, then drained and rinsed with cold water
2/3 cup thinly julienned carrots
1/2 cup thinly julienned celery head (or cucumber or raw papaya)
2 spring onions, sliced thinly
1 red chilli, deseeded and sliced
a small handful of coriander leaves
1 cup of small or medium-sized shelled shrimp, salted lightly and panfried for 3-5 minutes in a bit of oil till just cooked
2 tsp lime juice (more if you like it tangier)
1 tsp castor sugar
1 tsp fish sauce
salt to taste
Mix it all together in a glass salad bowl. Adjust taste accordingly. Serves 2 right.