Pictured above from the upper left: An unknown Thai melon, a katon (aka kraton, kraton priya, krathon wild mangosteen, santol, or sandorica. Scientific names: Sandoricum koetjape, Sandoricum indicum, Sandoricum nervosum or Melia koetjape. Family Meliaceae, Order Sapindales. Source.) somebody at work gave me, and an unknown species of banana that were selling for 20 baht/bunch at a local market.
The bananas were good but not exceptional, the katon got spoiled before I could eat it (I never seem to get sweet ones; people around here tend to eat it in a savory/spicy fruit salad), and I did what we do with all unknown melons* – tried a bit to see if it was a sweet variety. When it proved to be a non-sweet variety, we used half for pork rib soup and half in a red curry. It was the bomb!
*Let me clarify: We don’t eat stuff that might not be safe. It’s not unknown because we have no idea about it, but because our housekeeper gave it to us and told us the name, but we promptly forgot it. Now our housekeeper is recovering from surgery at home, so the name of the melon will remain unknown until such time as she recovers, returns to work, and I can remember to ask her about it.
When I ventured out this morning to buy the kid’s breakfast, sticky rice and barbecued pork skewers (which have gone up in price universally to 5 baht per skewer — they were still 3 baht at some places up until a couple months ago), I drove though a fog hovering in the neighborhood behind ours. Even with the windows closed, I got a whiff of Raid and realized they were fumigating the area again. I hurriedly went to buy the food — in an yet unsprayed area — and rushed back home.
Nam said she’d just heard a pickup driving around blasting a message from the local government, so that meant they were coming to spray at our house, too. It was just past 7:30, about an hour before we usually take Max to school near our house, and Mina to her school near Nam’s university. But the spray man was coming, so we had to get them out. I got them dressed while Nam packed their bags, then I got them in the car and strapped them in their seats. I got the car running and pulled it out onto the street in front of the house, pointed away from the direction they were coming. Nam came running out with the bags, got in the car and pulled away… I stood there watching them leave in my boxers, and exactly one minute later heard the sound of insect doom: