Mariko Scavone

Mariko Scavone (eHomemakers): Mariko completed her degree in Spanish from the University of Texas at San Antonio. She then lived in a rural village in Japan for two years. Mariko also worked with a small business in Nicaragua selling candles. At the time of her fellowship she was studying for a Master’s degree at the School of Foreign Service from Georgetown University in Washington, DC. After her fellowship, Mariko wrote: "Since working in Malaysia, I am more sensitive to the risks and challenges of operating in a developing country. In particular, I learned how lack of human resources, attitudes toward social justice work, weak legal enforcement, corruption, and human rights abuses inhibit growth, unfairly target one segment of society, and breed mediocrity."

We go for the chutney

24 Jun

It’s Saturday at 730 in the morning. Julia (my roommate) and I walk out of the apartment. The smell of clove cigarettes winds its way through the morning air. We nod good morning to the guard and scan the palm tree lined street for Ching Ching. I spot her sitting under one of the sleepy palm tress and think that her tiny frame looks even smaller against the healthy tress. She springs up and we walk briskly down the street until we arrive at “the hill.” The hill is already packed with Saturday morning pilgrims paying their weekly homage to fitness. The walk is brisk and I feel alive. Sweat beads on my neck and my heart works to pump blood to my legs. Our walk lasts for about an hour and a half and ends in our favorite Indian restaurant. We eat there every Saturday morning-sit at the same table, order the same thing from the same waiter. And every Saturday morning Ching Ching wavers her hands about and leaves the table several times to maker sure our order- 3 tosei and tea without sugar- is understood.

We don’t go for the service. We go for the chutney. There are three types -cocconut, papaya, and tomato. The coconut chutney is my favorite. Along with coconut, it has strong overtones of ginger and fresh chili. There are also hints of cinnamon and anise. It is the first time I have ever eaten coconut chutney, and I end up bargaining with the cashier to sell me some. The tomato chutney is even more spicy. It is a deep red and tastes something like salsa sans cilantro and with more chili. Finally, the papya chutney is a sweet compliment to its spicy sisters. I can see different spices floating among the small chunks of fruit. We dip tosei in the chutneys. Tosei is like a crepe only it is crispy. It comes served on a banana leaf. We put the chutney on the banana leaf and tear pieces of tosei to dip in the chutneys.

It’s a Saturday morning ritual that smoothes out all the bumps of the work week.

Posted By Mariko Scavone

Posted Jun 24th, 2007


  • Varuni

    July 10, 2007


    Hi Mriko,

    Was it tosei or dosa that you had at this Indian place? Dosa are huge while tosei is like a crepe. Both are delicious. I can see that you are having a good time.

    Some people have put up their links to the MSFS summer log, why dont you also?

    best regards,


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