We all know the Thai drill, the Kop kun kop, the sewasdee kop, the nitnoy kop. I mean, right? I’m trying nonetheless to build on thank you, hello, and a little bit. Some things are easy, some are not.
Yesterday we climbed in the heat of the tropics up a steep hill and past orchards until we entered a misty bamboo grove just below the summit on which sat a smooth, small, white Buddhist temple. Gilded, musty, damp, and outside views of rice farms and more orchards.
Later, in town, PM (pre-massage), a quick lunch of fried pork rind for the gentleman and fried chicken for the ladies, which set us back $4. We also bought a big package of noodles that the proprietor had just made.
Still PM we hit the market where PWP (prices were posted), a pleasant surprise, and we saw trays of upended, bloodied bullfrogs, blue plastic bins of eels going on their last swim, mounds of chicken carcasses, and simply the most beautiful vegetables (bamboo shoots, baby eggplants, little tomatoes [fine, they’re a fruit, who asked you?], okra, etc.) and fruits (rambutan, melons, papaya, mango) imaginable. Prepared foods–noodles, grilled pork and chicken, soups–were available as well.
Later, cooking up a storm, just after a MM (monster monsoon) blew in, the extreme freshness of everything was evident. The grouper I bought the day before: Pan seared fast with salt and pepper. The chicken I bought the day before: Fried with pepper, salt, and honey. Noodles? Boiled in 30 seconds and run under cold water and placed in bowls. The baby eggplant, tomatoes, bamboo shoots, ginger, garlic, and onions? Used to make a broth placed over the noodles. Topped with a small piece of grouper each, little salt, little bit of chopped basil, get it to the table!
Cold beers, dining and reclining on the floor. Yeah, that’s what I’m talking about. On a related note: Ray Allen to the Heat as a 6th man? Kow rai!