So what does this have to do with traveling, you may ask? Well, I somehow ended up in Thailand without a very good explanation of why I chose to come here. I have a habit of making these flash decisions when it comes to traveling and they seem to prove more rewarding than the well thought out ones. My alibi? The food.
Eight months ago the word "Asia" made me cringe. Then, some girl said Southeast Asia was a real hotspot for backpackers. I went home that night and looked up Southeast Asia on the map. Thailand! I like Thai food, I should go there! Books closed, decision made.
Ok, I lied a bit. I don't just like Thai food, I have an abnormal obsession, a burning desire in my gut for the stuff. Pad se eew, tom yum soup, pad Thai, passion fruit shakes, I see it in my dreams and wake up wondering when I will have my next bite of deliciousness. I used to joke that I would go to Thailand just for the food, and well, that's kind of why I'm here.
Traveling through Thailand is like an ongoing food safari. Mealtime excites me and I'm sure to always scout out the sketchiest looking food stand for a true Thai treat, but it's the little snacks in passing that really make me happy. Kebab grills outside of shops, boba iced tea, fruit stands and pancake carts are just a few that fill every street and alleyway.
A few days ago I finally gave into my Thai foodie appellation and set off to partake in cooking Thai cuisine. The first words out of my instructor's mouth were, "my name is Gaye, but I'm not gay!" I knew I was in for a real treat. She was a little pistol, taking us through the market explaining different Thai ingredients and making sassy remarks to the two smart alec boys in the class, all in her loud Thai accent.
Once we had gathered our goods, we went back to our outdoor kitchens and chopped, mixed and cooked our ingredients into a scrumptious feast of curry, pad Thai, chicken soup, spring rolls and mango sticky rice. Need I mention food coma?
In the end we all received "master Thai chef" certificates (that one is getting framed when I go home) and the best part? No dishes to wash!