Tuesday, August 16, 2011

I Eat Bugs

Yep. I eat bugs. On purpose? No way! Of course not? Don’t be ridiculous! I honestly don’t know why anyone would eat them unless I guess that’s all they could afford to eat or they were stranded in a jungle or something like that. But that’s not me. I just eat them accidentally. Every single day. Pretty much, anyway.

It’s definitely not on purpose but let me transport you back in time to the events of my past couple weeks and you can experience eating bugs with me.

#1 I am enjoying a wonderful peanut butter sandwich while my kids nap and I am reading a book on my kindle. I’ve put down the sandwich for a few minutes and when I pick it up again I take a bite while being completely engrossed in my book. A second or two after I swallow I feel that unmistakable tickle of an ant on my arm. I look down to see the sandwich covered in ants. The sandwich I just ate a huge bite out of. Gross.

#2 I am enjoying a nice, refreshing, Coca-Cola from a fountain at KFC. Yes, we have KFC here. But it is by no means the same. Not at all. They have curry and fish and all sorts of stuff, and I have to order from pictures because the menu is in Khmer font, which I can’t read, so I never know if I’m getting chicken or fish or… whatever… Anyway, it’s safe to drink there, so I’m enjoying a beverage and cooling off in the heat. As I get to the bottom, slurping every last drop out of the cup, I see something gray in the ice. Yep, sure enough, frozen in the ice is half of a moth. Or I think that’s what it is. I’m too disgusted to look too closely.

#3 I decide to make macaroni and cheese for the boys. Homemade, fatty, buttery, cheesy, gooey mac and cheese. I am so excited. I put the water on the stove and as I prep the sauce I see the rolling boil start. I always let it boil 3 minutes here before I throw in the pasta. That’s how long it takes to make sure any bacteria is dead. Or that’s what I tell myself. I look at the clock and 3 minutes later I dump in the bag of shells. As soon as I pour it in, I see thousands…ok, maybe not thousands… dozens, though… of tiny roaches float to the top. They were in the shells and floated out as I boiled the water. So I scooped them out and we ate it anyway. No, just kidding! We didn’t eat that pasta. And every time I have seen shells since I’ve been grossed out.

#4 I enjoy a sandwich at a local café. It has grilled chicken, lettuce, tomato, and some weird sauce similar to thousand island but with fresh herbs in it. I don’t care for the sauce so I scrape some of it off. As I do, I notice that one of the “herbs” is actually a gnat. Dead. In my sandwich. And if I’d asked for a refund for that I’d probably have been laughed at!

#5 I decide to just eat chips and salsa with some refried beans for lunch one day. Hey, I’m noticing a fattening trend among my eating habits here… Anyway, I sit at the table while the boys eat their healthy lunch and just snack out of the bag, dipping into the homemade guacamole, refried beans, and salsa I made. Oh, the beans and salsa were NOT homemade, just to clarify. But anyway, I sit eating a nice meal and as I look into the bag to see how many chips are left I see ants all in the bag. Eeew. Who knows how many I ate?

This is just a small sampling of the bugs I’ve partaken in here in Cambodia. And I live in a very modern, Western style apartment! Stephen tried the popular local treat - a fried tarantula. He’s tried some crickets and who knows what else, too. They sell that stuff at the market. As for me, I think I’ll stick to my oh, so healthy eating habits and just keep hoping a tarantula doesn’t make its way into any of my food. But, how could you accidently ingest one of those anyhow? They are gigantic. Those should be eaten by choice only. And I don’t see myself making that choice anytime soon.

I’m sure you now have this burning desire to visit me??? Anyone???


  1. Oh goodness!!! Gross!!! So sorry for all your bug eating experiences! I have to say, you were NOT convincing me to come visit!! ;) I was thinking about sending you a care package of home maintenance grade bug spray that you can spray around your house to KILL all those bugs! EWWW! Glad you have a great attitude about it....and I wouldn't eat the tarantula either! Yuck!

    BTW...how do the ants/bugs get there so fast??

  2. L - Thanks for thinking of the bug spray! haha, they sell Raid here and believe me, we use it! But when we bring in fresh fruits and veggies from the market, we also bring in bugs. These things have happened over weeks, so its not really that bad. And usually the bugs don't come fast - they are just already there and I don't notice them. It's gross, but it's a way of life here. At least I don't have to live like some people here who have them all over them all the time living in places far worse than this! I am thankful for that!

  3. Reminds me of Jacob's maggot experience...details o Mark's Facebook. Jacob is still traumatized. He would not last a day in Cambodia!

  4. oh, i so want to visit you. we're so proud of you guys. much love. so glad i can post now. love, kristy