An adventure in South east Asia
An adventure in South east Asia
Meat is hanging from the ceiling where a woman is sitting. The small shop is built as a platform with four wooden stilts holding up the wooden floor and bamboo roof. In the ceiling hangs what once was, a white fan but now it is more a home for small nesting birds. The meat is piled up where she sits and the flies are having a buffe. To make space some of the meat hangs on rusty butcherhooks from the ceiling. I wonder how long they have been hanging there.
But it is not the actual sight of the woman’s feet in the meat. Or the fact that the meat has been butchered about a week ago and has been hanging since then in the scorching heat. Or even the butchered whole pog hanging from the back of the burcherwomans vespa with its hooves back parts n the mud. Flesh wide open.
It is not all this that makes me wonder.
What makes me wonder? Where and why do people eat that and why do they not get sick?
My first real travel and adventure was when e and my partner started the journey in Asia, Hong Kong in March 2014.
I was aware that what I was about to see was different and sometimes mind blowing. Culturechock would sometimes even match my reactions.
Hong Kong sure had their share of weird food combinations with their rooster combs and chicken heads and dumplings. Indonesia has an amazing food culture with great vegetarian food and a good variety if you can eat seafood. But they have a tradition that are still widely spread in Asia. More dominent and well known for Indonesia is the so called “street goat”. If I would walk up to a food vendor or a restaurant and ask what type of meat that deliciously looking kebab is Mae of he could easily say it is street goat. Any undefined meat usually is. Dog. Indonesia has a lot of stray dogs and are widely acceptable to eat for many loclas (not all).
So eating meat was a think twice act.
After Indonesia it was Singapore’s turn to show ooff. Since there is a lot of mixed cultures in Singapore the food is just that. Mixed. Chinese and Korean went hand in hand with Starbucks and McDonalds. But still nice.
Philippines made me wonder if I was to get a real home cooked meal anytime soon. From what I saw the food was so America adapted and of poor quality that we didn’t want to eat. A lot of barbeque but a lot that looked unsafe. So we stuck to our hotel menu.
Vietnam. My, my did Vietnam have food. Good food but sometimes hard to find outside the main tourist areas. But I fell in love with their ice coffee. Thick, strong, chocolate flavored coffee with sweet milk and ice. It became addictive. And the best part is that it was even better in Cambodia where they hung the meat that I was telling you about earlier. Cambodia has one of the most bizar food cultures I ave ever seen. Pigs inner ear stew, eggs with live embryos is a delicassy. It goes beyond imagination. I tried fried snaps and pigs ear stew. I can honestly say I am not. An and I am not trying again.
Thailand on the other hand. Good food, good fruit, relatively good coffee and it is all available everywhere for a cheap sum of money. I love Thailand for that.
Sri Lanka took me to a new world of food culture. Now it was not so much noodles as the rest of Asia. But lentils. I love llemtils and in both India and Sri Lanka they make the most delicious Dahl I have ever tasted. Lentils,coconut milk and spices all together in a pot for ten to fifteen minutes. And it is usually the cheapest dish to get if eating out. p
Nepal had Mo-mos which is a dumpling either steamed or fried with beef, chicken or vegetarian filling. And of course their Nepali masala tea which I had every day. In Nepal many locals are Tibetan so there for the food is also heavily influenced by Tibet. Tibetan bread with omelette is popular which is like a thick Naan or Fajita bread. I ate eat when we trekked in the Himalaya because it is easy to get and fills up your stomach.
The adventure in South east Asia is over. Now it is time for Canada. A whole new content and a whole new chapter. I wonder what it will bring.