Maria Holland

How Exactly Do You Liquefy a Snake Penis?

In Uncategorized on October 2, 2009 at 11:16 pm

I slept in until 10 – totally necessary after yesterday’s exhausting climb.  Aleid told us about a really good bakery that she had found the day before, so we went to check it out.  We had to go down a flight of stairs to get there, but I’m convinced it was actually located in heaven.  I bought a BLT, a roll of French bread, a croissant, and a donut.  Please pause to reflect on the immense amount of joy this brought to me. 

We took the MRT to Dan Shui/Tamsui, which is near Taibei on the coast.  The first stop was Santo Domingo, which was (briefly summarized) a Spanish fort, then a Dutch fort, and then a British consulate.  It was kind of interesting, mainly because they had a Luxembourg flag instead of the Dutch flag (which Diederik was quick to point out) and because of the 3rd floor, which was basically a random shrine to French culture. 

After that we went to the coast.  We found a fish market that sold fried sweet potatoes and seaweed but no fish, and a Lover’s Bridge.

DSCN5020

We took a bus back to Danshui and, after a quick stop at the Dunkin’ Donuts, returned to Taibei.  Carlos and I did a little bit of looking in the big mall near our hostel, followed by a delicious trip to Coldstone.  We hung out at the hostel for a little while and then met up with Keiko and Diederik at the Huaxi Night Market again.  We had made plans to eat dinner together and had already chosen the menu – snake. 

We ordered a plate of fried snake (because it actually looked like it might be decent) and one “set” (because it looked hardcore).  The set consisted of snake soup (which in China means “snake meat in hot water”), a glass of snake blood, and five tiny glasses: snake bile, snake poison, snake penis, ginseng, and Taiwanese traditional made from seahorse.  Keiko was just there to take pictures and Diederik just ate the fried snake, which left the heavy lifting to Carlos and I. 

The fried snake was okay flavor-wise, but was too mushy for my taste.  The meat in the soup tasted like bland turkey, with tons of tiny bones as special surprises.  I was the first one to drink the blood, and my immediate reaction was that it tasted like cherry juice (while I don’t doubt that it was real blood, I do believe it was adulterated somehow).  Carlos didn’t agree, and after thinking and talking about it more, I had a harder time getting the second sip down.  The bile, poison, and penis weren’t that bad either, although it did spark a rather lengthy conversation about how the penis of a snake is made into a drink . . . Surprisingly, the ginseng and seahorse shots were the worst by far.

There were also two snake oil pills, which Carlos suggested we take by downing one of the drinks.  We each got to pick our poison – in my case I literally chose the poison, while Carlos took the blood.  After that we continued to 干杯 (dry our glasses) until we were done.  I ended up with the bile and penis, and he took the two nasty non-snake ones. 

After snake, Diederik was fired up to try some cockroach so we ventured into the rest of the night market but were ultimately unsuccessful.  Darn . . .

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