Every Saturday, our village has a market in the morning. It is a great part of our week – we can buy produce and hang out with friends. The people here have only recently been doing the market regularly and have told us how much they enjoy it. And, since there aren’t any other villages around that have a market, people from nearby villages will even hike over to spend the morning and sell their vegetables. The most common items for sale are garden produce, but there is also prepared food, items from town (oil, soap, salt – you can see this behind us in the picture above), tobacco, and betel nut.
My language helper, Katrin, had been telling me that I should make something to sell at the market. She would say something like, “I have plenty of cassava root, you should take some, mix it with your flour, make tapioca pancakes and you could sell them. I won’t even take any of the money!” I told her, a couple times, that I didn’t really want to sell things at the market (we try to steer clear of anything that makes it seem like we are here to gain something financially!). But after she mentioned it a couple times, I told her that if she would do it with me, I would do it – so I could spend time with her and learn more language!
It was fun! First, I went to meet her and Jois on Friday night to prepare the cassava root. Katrin was still at her garden, so I just spent time with Jois. Her husband had just caught an eel in the river and they had prepared it. She let me have a bite and it reminded me of tuna (it is the grey stuff nestled inside the greens):
Then Saturday morning, Jois and Katrin came over with the cassava root. We mixed it with my flour and fried it in my kitchen. It was very sweet to cook with them in our home. Here is Jois giving a “We are making pancakes!” fist-pump:
Yosong, the man in the pic below, collects 20 cents from each person as a “market fee” that he gives to the community for projects. The ladies here in the picture are selling greens and fresh peanuts.: