Insect appetizers

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These went really well with the snake soup last week. We forgot to take photos of them past the prep stage, though. They were salted and deep fried, and then their heads were taken off which allowed easy deveining ala shrimp. As far as I could tell they were a cross between a cricket and a potato bug (mmm, potatoes), but as large as your thumb.

Birth of a U.S. Citizen Abroad, reported

Now all we have to do is wait for the results. If everything goes well I’ll go to pick up his passport in two or three weeks.
The entire application took less than an hour, including filling out forms for reporting the birth of a U.S. citizen abroad as well as a passport (BTW, did you know there are “passport books” as well as “passport cards” now? The former are standard passports and the latter are for visiting countries bordering the US and US territories or something like that.).
One funny thing is that the interviewer didn’t believe that I didn’t have dual Japanese/American citizenship although I thought I explained what a Japanese American is very well. Oh well, the mixing pot is sometimes hard to imagine unless you’ve been there (the interviewer in question wasn’t from the US).
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Max did fine on the plane and in the Bangkok confusion. He only threw a fit once, and we happened to be at Nam’s aunts’ house in Lad Prao at the time, so everything went very smoothly.

No more hi-octane ethanol-free gas in Mahasarakham

This photo was taken back in March.
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This was the last gas station in Maha Sarakham to sell 95 octane gasoline with no ethanol added. It greatly surprised me to find them selling it because all of the other stations had gradually phased it out by the end of the previous year – PTT and Petronas were the first to go, then Esso, then finally, what I thought was the last holdout, Caltex. But I stopped at this station (I even forget what company it was!) on the way back from the road to Borabu, a neighboring town, and got a full tank of the good stuff – unadulterated 95 oc (and it may very well have been the last tank my car will get, ever – it’s VQ30 is running fine on 95 gasohol, tho).
The problem is, this station is too far away and off the beaten path. When I went to the labor office (located on the road to Borabu) to renew my work permit a few days ago, I looked at the pumps when passing by and saw that they had finally switched to the ethanol crap like everywhere else.
Sad.
Note: The VQ30 in my A33 Cefiro is running on 95 gasohol. The RB20 in the S60 Crown is running on regular (non-eth) 91. They are both running fine, but I’d still prefer to run them on non-eth 95 because it runs smoother, gets better mileage, and isn’t robbing food from people’s mouths.

lost in the ether

I did something today I’d never done before: I lost a chunk of my photo archives. The last 200 photos or so, including the originals of the ones used in the last two posts. The ones on the blog are all that remain… I did this because I was disk juggling and creating backups while I was too tired, overwriting data and formatting a disk that I assumed had been backed up already. Oops. I only write this here as a future warning to all: DON’T FORMAT DISKS WHEN TIRED!!
That is all.