On Friday, I ate lunch with Tharum, Hok Kakada, Heng Chantheng, Mam Sary, and others at Pannasastra University cafeteria. I had just finished presenting the video blogging workshop on very little sleep and was dehydrated..
The night before I went out to dinner with the group at a Cambodian pub, a beer garden featuring khmer food. We got to the restaurant via tuk tuk. (see video). The restaurant was an enclosed patio with christmas lights hanging from the ceiling and khmer music blaring. There were plastic bags filled with water hanging from the ceiling (later I was told they were used to disorient flying insects.) The food was a version of Korean Bar-B-Que - skillets on the table and an assortment of meat, veggies, and shrimp to fry.
Photo by David Saski
A dish was brought to the table and the Cambodian bloggers insisted that I try it. It was fried ants, grasshoppers and frogs legs. After significant peer pressure from the crew at Global Voices, I had no choice but to eat it. It actually didn't taste bad, but all I could imagine ants crawling down my throat. I didn't sleep much because I imagined ants in crawling around in my stomach and insects did not agree with me. Read what Sopheap had to say.
It reminded of the last time I was in Cambodia. Elephant, the Sharing Foundation in-country director, took us to the Central market where he purchased a cricket and ate for us. He said "hmm .. delicious ... just like chicken." I thought I'd never eat a bug.
So the idea of eating bugs for lunch had been in my head. Bugs for lunch. That's the title of a book that I used to read my kids at bedtime. It was about what birds eat. In the appendix there was a page that showed different people who eat bugs and it included an illustration of Khmer family eating bugs for lunch. Harry always asked, "Mommy, if I lived in Cambodia, would we be eating bugs for lunch." I answered no. But now, I can tell him - you can eat ants for lunch!