Tropical flowers, a watercolor and Kuwaiti kabsa

LAST Thursday, December 3, I attended the annual Christmas bazaar of the American International Club of Brasilia at the Portuguese Embassy.

My mother has been a member of this club for many years, so I decided to tag along this year since I had never been before. The club was founded in 1971, when Brasilia was only 11 years old. It’s original name was American Women’s Club of Brasilia, but that was changed a few years ago to accommodate the husbands of diplomats who were posted to the Brazilian capital and wanted to be members of the group.

The bazaar was a slightly interesting mishmash of a bake sale cum jewelry and embroidery sale. Tables were set up to display the goods of both club members and outside vendors. I bought a beautiful arrangement of tropical flowers grown right here in the Distrito Federal in Brazlândia for only R$15 (around $8.60).

I also got a beautiful watercolor of a cashew tree for R$80 ($46) painted by Therese von Behr, a talented artist originally from Romania and who has been living in Brasilia for many years. I also won a jar of Marmite from the UK in the raffle section. Unfortunately, although I do like the saltiness of the dark brown yeast spread, I cannot eat it because it will inflame the gout I have in my left ankle.

What really caught my attention though, was the Asian section of the bazaar that had steamed Chinese dumplings, Indonesian dishes and a rice, kabsa dish from Kuwait. A Brazilian man came in bearing the Kuwaiti dish. I looked in vain for a Kuwaiti woman accompanying him and later had to laugh and point out to my mom that a Brazilian maid in a well-pressed uniform was standing next to the Kuwaiti dish ready to serve anyone a plate of the good-looking dish for R$5 a pop.

“How typical of Kuwaitis,” I told my mom, chuckling. “They can’t even be bothered to show up, instead they send their dish with a maid!”

With that we called it a day and left with our goodies to have lunch at the Gilberto Salamão shopping center in the Lago Sul.

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