Daily Archives: March 7, 2006

Sungkaya – Thai custard


This Thai dessert is called sungkaya and tastes a bit like a custard. The main ingredients are duck eggs, palm sugar, normal sugar, coconut cream, pandanus leaves and cassava flour. The toppings can vary. This one has pumpkin. But, you can also buy cocount meat, taro or foi thong toppings. It is usually served with sticky rice. Very delcious and worth eating.


It is now more than 15 years since I started traveling around Asia because of the custom made “job” that has become my life.
I do not like to call it a “work”, but it is always much better than any other pompous and, perhaps, cheap terms I have been hearing in this span of time. Contrary to someone’s behavior we are absolutely not world savers guys, just people lucky enough to work with and for others and to have the chance to enrich ourselves with so many wonderful experiences and emotions.
During this period of time I have seen so many tears, so many tragedies, a lot of suffering, desperation and resignation: last among many the Tsunami.

I daily read in the newspapers stories of wars, tortures, oppressions of hundreds of innocent people, killers in the name of God, millions of starving children while a few “chosen ones” they become wealthy on their skin and skulls and I wonder… in what kind of world are we living.

But one fine day I am asked to help to re-establish a contact between two people that for a very long time, a lot of time were lost in the different waves of life.

In fact, I had the privilege to help a child (I will call her Melody, as her friends do) to get back in contact with her mother again. The lady, when she was 17 years old, left the baby shortly after her birth in an institute for adoptions, she has been left by the father and this was her only chance left.
Surely nothing special in these parts of the world, in fact the girl that lives next to me in Ban Naudom endured the same fate, the only difference is that her grandmother is now taking care of the baby and saving her from giving him up to some institution.

But it is not this story that struck my heart but the words of the letter that Melody wrote her mother, every single word dipped in the ink of love for a woman that she never met but once few months ago.
Reading the words of this 13 years old really opened my heart and made me look at the power of love, a power that enable us to overcome every trauma and every obstacle in our life.

I don’t personally know Melody but it doesn’t matter, I think of her as an extraordinary young woman I hope only that the world and life will not take away from her the immense gift she has: the power of unconditional love.
I don’t even know her adoptive parents, but no doubt they are wonderful people because they have tried everything to enable their daughter to find her biological mother.
I know that in many of such cases there is lot of jealousy, the fear of losing the child’s affection and love but it did not happened in this case.
For this I admire them a lot, I totally admire this family that has allowed me to acknowledge that love is still among people even though in a world pervaded with hatred.

Melody’s words have been for me like rays of sunshine piercing the black clouds that overhang our planet and our own existence.

Love is still there!

PS> for those who may wonder what the hell such story has to do with a Thai “cultural” blog, please know that both mother and, obviously, daughter are Thai.
Their story is emblematic of the many problems that exists in this country and, moreover, the attitude of this young girl reflects, in my humble opinion, that of many Thai people I know: naturally joyful, loving, accepting, blessing and grateful people.

Ban Naudom, March 6th 2549


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http://wanderingkhunphu.blogspot.com (English version) or/and
http://ilcazzabubolo.blogspot.com (Italian version)