A few semi-related thoughts as I plan this week’s menus

I am fucking accomplished in every other area of my life. Why can’t I control what I put in my mouth? And why do I order a second demi-carafe of wine when I know I’m going to regret the calories the next morning? A colleague whom I respect greatly made an offhand comment to me about being on a diet. She’s an accomplished leader, mother, cook, superwoman. If she’s not...


Good reads for February 26th

Friday photo: Showing the flag | FP Passport – Libyan embassy staff raise pre-Qaddafi flag at Libyan ambassador's residence in Washington PointsPlus Values – Don't know how long this will be free. A Graphical Analysis Of Lady-Hating Online Trolls –


There is not enough coffee in this world

Today I got up early to write and work. Tomorrow, I’m going to get up 30-minutes earlier to walk and then write. It’ll only give me 30 minutes, but the sunshine is now so hot after work that it’s miserable walking home. Even right now, before dawn, it’s humid and uncomfortable. Oh, rainy season, you are miserable. I didn’t actually get up because I wanted to write. I got up...


Good reads for February 20th

In Liberia, splurging on sushi to feel at home – – WTF there's sushi in MONROVIA, but not in COTONOU? I AM MOVING. In Liberia, splurging on sushi to feel at home – – WTF there's sushi in MONROVIA, but not in COTONOU? I AM MOVING. / Africa – Cash runs out at Ivory Coast banks – RT @penelopeinparis "Ivorian civil servants – unlike those elsewhere...


On going out for drinks. Anywhere. Ever.

I love Happy Hour with expats and Peace Corps Volunteers. But every fucking Saturday, the check is a fucking hassle. Ridiculous! Dear everyone in the world who will have to share a check with someone sometime during your life (expats, volunteers, and muggles alike), Here are some rules for going out for drinks or food: You cannot pay just the price of your meal. You must leave a tip. If...


Baby steps

I haven’t been blogging about my food or taking pictures. There are a lot of excellent reasons: I am working two jobs and they are keeping me hopping. I can’t take my camera to work and so no pictures of snacks or lunch in our shiny new cafeteria. It’s hard to talk about cutting calories when I have 2 liters of beer every Saturday at Happy Hour. I am not...


Hello champagne and the caviar set

Becoming a Foreign Service Officer (read: American diplomat) is a long and frustrating process. I’ve made it through the most difficult parts, and I’m now officially on the list of future hires. If all goes well in the Congress, I will definitely become an FSO … eventually. What’s this mean for People Online? Absolutely nothing. I haven’t gotten the call yet. Bertrand is running the company today, and he will...


Damn, I wish I were naked right now

Welcome to the hot season in Cotonou. If you’ve never had the joy of living through la chaleur in West Africa, please don’t tell me how bad Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama, and Florida are. In fact, you already know where you can shove your hot humid American summers. I’ve lived through Southern summers (thank you Crossmen!). You ain’t got nothin’ on the hot season here. Up North, you face scorching sunshine...


Carbs, carbs, and more carbs

I love bread. Sorry, I’m not sorry. For those who can and do low-carb diets, I salute you! Every time I drop my carb intake, the pounds seem to melt off. Unfortuantely, I love pizza crust and sweet potatoes and carrots and pineapples and OMG CARBS. So I don’t do low-carb. Just like I’m tempted to go 100% vegetarian, but the thought of a sweet juicy steak every 6-months keeps...


Mr. Bento rocks my socks

The new LiveStrong always crashes my browser at work. THIS IS POOR DESIGN, PEOPLE. Why did they spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to redesign the site, and neglect those of us who have to connect with older browsers on computers with poor memory? Indeed. I pre-logged all of my food for the day while I was meal planning yesterday because I’m a smarty-pants. And of course, I didn’t stick...