For about fifty cents each, we can put three of us into a tuk tuk and get a ride to any of the dozens of great places to eat in this rather engaging Asian city. I'm so glad that we have evenings "free" and are on our own for meals at this conference.
I admit that I'm in a bit of a rut that I'm enjoying -- two of the four nights I've been here so far, I've had dinner with two of the same women. But, I'm ahead of myself.
On Monday night I joined Dawn and Luci at the Riverside where we ate outside by the river as the sun was setting. I had some spring rolls, a shrimp toast thing with a name I can't remember and some green curry rice. There was enough heat in the curry and the dip for the toast that I was sweating even with the nice breeze. We took a tuk tuk there and walked back through the night market. It was a lovely evening catching up with two women who were both in the Comm department in Orlando when I first was there 6+ years ago and who have, at different times and in different places, provided me a place to stay when I was traveling.
On Tuesday night I went with Tammy and Sandy to a place that was so wonderfully eclectic i could hardly contain myself. I love beautiful things -- colors and textures and shapes. The atmosphere and the meal provided both in abundance. We had a morning glory tempura with tamarind dipping sauce, a curry soup, a green papaya salad and a sweet & sour chicken (and erase ANY idea you have in your head of what that looks or tastes like from a carry-out place in the States). It was spectacular.
On Wednesday night I ate with Bob & Dallas, Russ, Chuck and Doug at the hotel since some had evening meetings they needed to be back for. We enjoyed the buffet. One of my favorite things on it were the fried bananas at dessert and the fresh grilled fish. Also, at every meal in the hotel we are getting sweet, wonderful YELLOW watermelon. I'd never seen it that color before and boy is it yummy to the tongue and the eyes.
Tonight I was out, again, with Tammy and Sandy, and another of their friends whose name has just vanished into the abyss that used to be my brain (I'll remember once I post -- how embarrassing). We went to Duke's because Sandy was craving "American" food. She had nachos, I had lasagna, Tammy had a grilled veggie sandwich and ____ (oh, I thought for a moment I'd forget that I'd forgotten and her name would just come sliding out) had a Duke's Burger. The lights went out in the middle of the meal, but candles saw us through until that was fixed. No one seemed to mind.
I'm loving the variety of foods and places...and means of transport. Tonight we took a "red bus" which is kind of like a jeepnee, but not so flashy. This have a greater passanger capacity than the tuk tuks. (Sandy lived here for a bit, so we are spoiled to have a guide who has language and knows stuff about this culture and this city. Yeah, the other day the gals in the foot massage place were giggling at here because she was mixing her Thai with Vietnamese. Me, I mix up my English with my...English.)
ADDED FRIDAY MORNING: Her name is Pam. I ran into her this morning and the lights came back on in my brain. Maybe I'll remember better now that I've so publically forgotten.