December 16, 2009

Phuket, Thailand

Filed under: Asia — maryparadox @ 5:37 pm

I went to Thailand for a couple of days with my dad in between my trips to Hong Kong and Taiwan for work. He was helping out at an orphanage there and it seemed like a good time to visit a country I had always heard good things about.

I was totally expecting some cliche orphanage from the movies where all the kids are miserable and there are yuppy white people shopping for the perfect child. Instead the kids all looked really happy — like you got to hang out will all your friends all the time. They also were surprisingly *not* up for adoption. The plan is to put them through school then set them off into the world — no parents required. It was a neat thing to see and the kids had a lot of resources available to them; in fact the parents of non-orphans complained that their kids were at a disadvantage so the orphanage opened up its job training classes to the whole community. I didn’t spend too much time interacting with the kids since I unfortunately ended up working the whole time, but they were all really sweet, and I am now convinced that being an orphan instantly makes you cuter:
2009-11-29-47 (1)The countryside was amazing and it seemed that just about anything would grow anywhere. We went down to the beach and plants were just growing out of the sand. Apparently coconuts need the salt water to take root.

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While driving from Phuket, where the airport is, to the town with the orphanage, we passed by a number of these shrines as well as stores where the shrines were sold.

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Most importantly, we ate. My dad and I both love food so we took every opportunity to try new places and eat anything and everything that looked delicious. We tried eggs over rice with a sweet sauce (left) and tons of grilled (fried?) fish. Usually you just walked in and asked for food and they brought you something, with some occasional pointing at things like eggs or rice to see if you wanted them on the side. It was always a surprise but never bad, and occasionally fabulous. Thailand is definitely my favorite Asian food destination at this point.

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Fried flat bread with (spicy) red curry and usually eggs.


A weird coconut banana paste which tasted *exactly* like banana bread. Yum!

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