Sketching at Pacific East Mall is always an interesting proposition because it’s almost like visiting an Asian country (without the jet lag or costs). The stores and restaurants feature food and products from all the Asian countries and most of the signage and languages spoken there are also Asian.
It was fun copying the Chinese characters on the signage for these amazing and aptly named Dragon Fruits (above). I could picture these little dragons marching in a festive parade. I’m also really curious to try eating them. According to Wikipedia they are the fruit of a cactus and have a creamy pulp and a delicate aroma.
Another strange fruit, Cherimoyas had wonderful pattern on them. Since the green grocer spoke no English and I no Chinese I asked Google about the Cherimoya and learned some amazing things:
Mark Twain called the cherimoya “the most delicious fruit known to men.” The fruit is fleshy and soft, sweet, white, with a sherbet-like texture, which gives it its secondary name, custard apple. Some characterize the flavor as a blend of banana, pineapple, papaya, peach, and strawberry. Others describe it as tasting like commercial bubblegum. Similar in size to a grapefruit, it has large, glossy, dark seeds that are easily removed. The seeds are poisonous if crushed open and can be used as an insecticide. An extractive of the bark can induce paralysis if injected.
At the Ten Ren tea shop, Sonia ordered a Bubble Tea, a pink drink that had little blueberry-colored and sized balls of tapioca in it. We sat at a table and sketched to their background music of 1980’s rock and roll. One song came on that I recognized and tried think of the name of the band which led to us playing Senior-Moment Trivia. From my lame clues (big hair, blonde, nice guy with a bunch of kids, New Jersey, band named after him, there’s a “J” in the name…Jansen…no…) she came up with name of the band as we were leaving, saving me from a tortured night of trying to come up with….Bon Jovi!
It’s a good thing I was warmed up and sketching fast by the time I came to the hanging poultry. The store was preparing to close and an employee snatched them all off the line as I began to draw the last one.