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Thai Food Feast

by Tyler

Being waited on hand-and-foot gracefully is not our strongest suit. Invariably, it involves numerous rounds of awkward back and forth – us reflexively insisting on doing everything for ourselves, then relenting when we realize that we're spurning the generous hospitality being offered to us. If today is any indication, we should have plenty of practice soon.

I'm not quite sure how to act; this whole experience is pretty unreal. I have never been escorted anywhere, much less to the bathroom by a man in a crisp white shirt and tie. I'm not accustomed to having a someone hover nearby, waiting on my every beck and call, offering free iced coffee, beer, Thai food, ice cream, or anything else I could imagine.

Our Personal Attendent Bringing Iced Coffee

Getting everything we want, when we want it, for free, at what is probably the nicest Thai restaurant in the country outside of Bangkok, is really blowing my mind right now.

It is a quiet day at Bualaung, no weddings or parties scheduled, so it's just us and the hundred or so people who live and work in this compound, enjoying the downpours of Thailand's rainy season. We're not sure what where we fit into this behemoth place just yet. Tara expected we'd be hanging out with her family, but so far, they are nowhere to be found.

So, we watch the rain, bask in the tranquility, listen to the birds, and write, write, write.

Bualuang in the Rain Bualuang Waterlilies in the Rain Bualuang Pond in the Rain

When noon rolls around, Tara's cousin Sansanee, who is about our age, and is being groomed to take over the family business, stops by to say hello and make sure we are being treated like royalty. After a nice chat, she takes it upon herself to order us a "light lunch". Twenty minutes later, a parade of waiters brings us a feast!

Our mouths are agape and saliva production spikes rapidly, as place after plate after plate of authentic Thai food is placed on the table before us. We love Thai food, and can hardly contain our excitement!

The servers disperse, and then we survey the scene. There's a huge bowl of Tom Yam soup, and a plate of som tam, a sour, spicy, sweet green papaya salad, studded with peanuts, tomatoes, and tiny shrimp:

Som Tam (Green Papaya Salad)

Then comes the pork satay with peanut sauce:

Mu Satay (Grilled Pork)

Moo Da Dio, a plate of pork in a dark, sticky glaze, served with crispy fried lime leaves:

Moo Dah Dio

…and a hearty helping of phat thai (pad thai):

Pad Thai

And then, there's salt-coated deep fried chicken called Gai Ga Glear, served with sweet chili sauce. This is undoubtedly the best chicken I've ever put in my face. I am dead set on learning exactly how to make it before we leave.

Gai Ga Glear (Deep Fried Chicken w/ Salt)

Lastly, there's a little basket of kow neow (sticky rice):

Kow Neow (Sticky Rice)

I am speechless. The experience reminds me of the time Tara and I made popovers with honey butter for our friend Sarah. Her response was something along the lines of "THIS IS SO GOOD, I JUST WANT TO THROW THE PLATE ACROSS THE ROOM!"

Thai Lunch Feast @ Bualuang

Without deliberation, we've easily placed this extravaganza in the list of Best Meals We've Ever Had. This only scratches the surface of Bualuang's menu; I can't wait to see what comes next!

A few hours later, the skies are darkening, the rain is still falling, and it's time to go back to our hotel for the night. But first, we wander around and snap a few more photos of the grounds:

Bualuang in the Rain Bualuang in the Rain Bualuang in the Rain

I think I could get used to this life of luxury business.

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Thank you, Thank you, Thank you. It still looks the same to me and brings back beautiful memories. A time in our lives, we never believed would come true. Thank you Uncle Ad and Family. and Thank you T & T. I love you both very much. GM
Posted by gm on November 21st, 2010 at 1:54 PM
looks so good. We miss the Som Tom, that was our favorite!!
Posted by Sarah & Jamie on November 21st, 2010 at 2:30 PM
Wow! What luxury! I am pleased to read of this taste of the fine life for you. Each phase of your trip, from the harshness of Mongolia to the royal treatment found here at Uncle Ad's, has been fascinating, keeping me on the edge of my seat wanting more.
Posted by Debbie on November 21st, 2010 at 9:28 PM
You lucky whatnots!

Thai food is hard to beat, but those dishes look amazing! I might have to visit that restaurant on my next trip to Thailand!
Posted by Tony on November 22nd, 2010 at 1:10 PM
I'm reading this while trying to do something useful in the morning before picking up Arvid and making lunch. I'm already hungry, so need I tell you my mouth is watering?? Suddenly, what my fridge can offer for lunch does not seem very interesting at all...
Posted by Mia on November 30th, 2010 at 8:33 AM