We were enjoying a late evening stroll in the Kakhetian countryside with Lali, our guide and host, when we were beckoned by a group of young men having a picnic at the church. Lali and Audrey sacrificed Dan to Shota and Misha, the leaders of the group, and waited out the encounter at a distance.
We had high expectations of the Republic of Georgia. So far, we have not been disappointed. The people are warm and the place is beautiful.
Wondering where the real Vietnamese food is in Prague? Are fresh herbs and Asian goods your thing?
Where did you get those bags of frozen tiger shrimp? Where do you get your fresh Thai basil and long beans? Where did you get all those fresh herbs for your Vietnamese summer rolls?
If we had a nickel (a Czech koruna, perhaps?) for every time we’d been asked these questions, we’d have enough money to buy a vote in the Czech parliament.
We covet the secret no longer. Here’s the scoop…
We've often been asked “What's the best food you've had in mainland Southeast Asia?” If forced to choose, we'd opt for an easy way out and vote Thai food as the king of cuisines in the region. And after eating our way through Bangkok, Chiang Mai in northern Thailand, and Krabi in the south, our vote more specifically goes to Krabi.
When we told Audrey's mother we were going to Myanmar to extend our Thai visa, her anxiety level began to rise. “Don’t worry. Hundreds of British and Scandinavian men do it each week. If they can do it, we'll have no problem.”
Patong is not a place we would choose for a vacation – its main attraction is the beach, but sex tourism comes in a close second. We chose it deliberately as a place to get some things accomplished with ADSL internet in our room, few sites to distract us, and a beach within ten minutes walk when we needed a break.
Bangkok cuisine can be outstanding and almost criminally cheap. Here’s just a sample of what you might find, even if you don’t look very hard.
There are two ways to get to Battambang from Siem Reap: 1) bus on reliable roads, 5 to 6 hours or 2) boat on less than reliable waterways, 5 to 10 hours. We chose the boat option, having read that the journey along Tonle Sap Lake is the best water trip in Cambodia, where beautiful scenery and active floating villages accompany you most of the way.
First the Bugs
Curious, Dan struck up a conversation with a table of people enjoying their late afternoon snack of bugs and sugar cane juice near the river in Battambang. After inviting us to sit with them, he received a proper – and unexpected – lesson in art of bug eating. Step 1: remove the wings and legs. Step 2: pop them into his mouth, Step 3: chew a long, long while, Step 4: chase them with a healthy gulp of sugar cane juice. Step 5: Pray your digestive system approves of this curious new protein.