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The rain is dripping on the cherry laurel leaves in my garden. At the gate, I meet my Japanese neighbors who are carrying large bags of rice. We exchange types of soy sauce, because today I make sushi.
“Jasmine” – Asian Grocery in Galway is full of mystery products. I buy roasted seaweed, black sesame, but there’s also green sesame next to it. The clerk tells me because it is flavored with wasabi. I choose traditional Japanese Haruka rice, gluten-free soy sauce, and of course Japanese horseradish powder.
Pouring rain from the clouds. So I cover the table with a colorful fish mat. This is my setup for special occasions. I put a white lantern decorated with cherry blossoms. The rice cooks over low heat for 20 minutes comes out very sticky and wraps perfectly in the black seaweed with the salmon, crunchy celery, and black sesame seeds. Or with prawns and avocado, sometimes with finely chopped radish.
In addition, I make two salads in small bowls. One with green celery, red pepper, and sesame, the other with rocket, tomatoes, and almonds. Wasabi mixed with water becomes emerald.
Finally, friends come and we catch sushi with chopsticks straight from China. Next to our plates are wooden Mandarin Ducks– a symbol of good relations. The cat also eats a piece of roasted seaweed and follows its scent through the evening. In a green bottle on the table, we are accompanied by leaves sprinkled with July rain.
The next day I meet a Japanese man who sells homemade sushi at Galway Market. And I’m glad Japan can be a little closer. But also because I can be near my wonderful friends.