I’ve mentioned it before, but I’m surprised at just how tricky I’m finding it to adjust to these so-called seasons of Thailand. Now that we have been through a few of seasonal shifts, I’m starting to feel a bit more aware of it. The changes are certainly more subtle than they were at home. No leaves changing color, tulips popping out, or falling snow to clue me in. We seem to be past the true “hot” season that reached its peak somewhere around late April. These past few weeks have brought on cloudy days, drizzly rain, and cooler breezes.
Today, it’s just cool enough out that I can open the windows on both sides of the apartment and get a nice breeze. Having the windows open makes me realize how much is going on in our little neighborhood that I miss because we keep ourselves closed up tight to lock in the air conditioning.
With the windows open I can hear people laughing in the building next to ours, clothes flipping around in the breeze, and (most charming) what most certainly sounds like a record player cranking out Thai opera. The rare sound of life outside makes me feel connected to these neighbors of ours who share the air space 8 floors above the street.
The other subtle clue of the passage of time comes, of course, through food. A few weeks ago, I started seeing people on the streets lugging overloaded bags of mangosteens. This week, a cart has made its way down our street nearly every day, selling nothing but mangosteens. The vendor rings a bike bell and people come out en masse to stock up on the fruit. The fruit is so abundant at the moment that a woman in my writing workshop sweetly sent me home with a bag of the charming purple fruit from an organic farm near her house.
They are, quite possibly, the most beautiful fruit I have encountered in Thailand. With their crisp eggplant-color shell, layer of deep pink flesh and perfectly white citrus-like interior, they are tricky to get into, but worth the trouble.
I only wish I could munch on them while typing. Unfortunately, as I’ve discovered, nothing turns white things pink like unwashed fingers after a mangosteen feast.