The good, the bad and the just plain crazy....
Front Row Seats
If you've ever been to Bangkok you'll know what Khoasan Road has to offer for a night out. Depending on how many buckets you drink, the atmosphere is one you'll never forget. Live music in every bar, the smoky smell and sizzling sound of street food and the warm glow of colourful lanterns and neon billboard signs. One evening at around 8pm we were sampling some of the areas finest spirits (good old Sangsom) when all of a sudden we had front row seats for a street dancing competition. The contestants were a group of young Thai boys against a selection off older European men; obviously the Thai boys absolutely smashed it! They were all incredible, in particular the youngest boy who I later found out was 12 years old. At one point he was spinning his whole body upside down on one hand. I don't think I've ever seen skills like his as up close and personal before. The whole bar was hooked, roaring and slamming their hands on the tables in excitement; plus nearly everyone walking through at the time had stopped and formed a crowd around the dancers. It was just luck of the draw that we were sat on a table right out on the street where it was all happening. It felt like a true Bangkok experience, Kapon Kah boys!
Sexy Pad Thai
Whilst in Bangkok we decided it was finally time for Matts to learn some cooking skills; sorry bro, but you'd left it far too long. We booked onto a two hour course with a local restaurant called Mai Kaidee. The venue was perfect. We each had an individual fully equipped cooking station, which provided an excellent opportunity to pretend we were contestants on master chef. Over the two hours we learnt to cook Thai chilli paste, peanut sauce, Tom Yum Soup, Massaman curry and Pad Thai. What surprised me most was the minimal amount of time each one took to cook. We'd watch the street venders toss together a Pad Thai in a matter of minutes, but I assumed things had been pre-cooked or weren't fresh. Even the curry, which had an incredibly rich depth of flavour, took under 10 minutes to whip up from scratch. The best part was that we got to eat all the food. Ohhhhh my it was delicious. However, the real reason I felt I wanted to write about this experience was what happened after we made and ate the food. We were commanded to spread out around the room and repeat the words / actions of our head chef, which were pretending to cook a Pad Thai whilst singing "sexy Pad Thai, sexy Pad Thai". We performed this comrade for probably a little longer than anyone felt comfortable with, or could handle through the hysterical laughing. It was worth the £25 for that alone. Cheers Mai Kaidee, for the sexiest Pad Thai in all the land.
A wild, gluten free goose chase
Thailand has been very difficult for me to find gluten free food as soy sauce is used in pretty much every dish. What's more my hangover got the better of me in Phi Phi when I ordered a bowl of nachos without checking they were safe; 3 days of a bad stomach, headaches and drowsiness followed. After Matts had left us on our last day in Bangkok Dod was lovely enough to accompany me on what became a very long wild goose chase for a GF restaurant I had read about online. The restaurant had 3 branches, so at random we picked one and headed for it around lunch time. After a 20 minute bus ride we walked for another 20 minutes following a map to the shopping mall it was situated inside. We arrived and were told the restaurant was no longer there. No problem Dod said, we'll try another. So after some deliberation we worked out we could get the sky train to the next one but there would be a bit of a walk either side. About 45 minutes later we arrived at another mall where the reception lady confirmed it existed and directed us to the food court. Another 10 minutes of searching and we found it. As the waitress walked towards us I pretty much pounced on her asking if they had the GF spring rolls in. Then she told us that only one branch offers the GF menu, and of course it was the only one we hadn't tried. I burst into tears at this point, whilst the poor waitress stood there wondering who had died in that split second. It was totally over-dramatic but at the time I was completely drained and lacking any control of my emotions (sorry nice lady!) I said to Dod we might as well give up now, we'd been attempting to find this restaurant for over 2 hours without luck. I was a sniffling mess and Dod was getting hungrier by the second. But he was determined to get me a decent meal despite my resembling a spoilt toddler (or maybe that was why). We took the sky train back to where the first mall was and walked for another half an hour before we realised, and this was not taken lightly at the time, that the restaurant we were looking for was in fact across the road from where we had first stepped off the bus over 3 hours ago. After a hearty bowl of GF pasta, a gigantic bowl of topped fries and a slice of cake the whole thing became hilarious. Thank you Dod, for having the patience I struggle to find xxx