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Cravings launch: St Clements.

Cravings: A Zen-inspired memoir about sensual pleasures…

December 1, 2015 – 2:31 am

Good eating, an eclectic Toastmasters group, hospice training, Zen meditation, depression, social phobia, orgasmic meditation, tears — and laughter — all come into play in Cravings: A Zen-inspired memoir about sensual pleasures, freedom from dark places, and living and eating with abandon (Say Yes Press), an insightful gem of a memoir: writer, editor, foodie and adventurer Wanda Hennig’s first.

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Welcome to Berlin: now beware the U-Bahn station bandits

October 22, 2016 – 12:10 pm
Berlin Welcome Card pictured.

At the risk of inserting a spoiler at this point, her Berlin Welcome Card didn’t serve as a lifeline when she was robbed — of her passport, credit cards, debit card and entire stash of cash — the first time she used it. That was me…

Thailand Travel 37: The Doha market bus tour and home

October 3, 2016 – 6:34 am
Two cooks set up outside at Doha old market.

I sign up for the free two-and-a-half hour Doha bus tour; the 4pm run. The 100-year-old market is the highlight. The women encouraging us to try spoons of their brayani and other cooked food offerings — in heat that could probably melt my Crocs if I left them out for half an hour. Offering me tissues to dab at my face. Alarmed that I am sweating because they don’t seem to.

Thailand Travel 36: Blast… and Thailand’s worst breakfast

October 3, 2016 – 5:56 am
Nai Yang Beach Resort boxed breakfast.

The text messages about the bomb blasts come after I conclude that this dry whiter-than-white unbuttered bread with a couple of withered brown tears of lettuce and about eight minute slices of what I presume is chicken and a dry small roll and a wizened small citrus fruit of indistinguishable nature must be the worst brekker ever served in food-loving Thailand. Thanks Nai Yang Beach Resort.

Thailand Travel 35: Nai Yang late night massage surprise

October 3, 2016 – 5:30 am
Nai Yang Phuket

“Mam” comes out and we chat. I ask her why she’s so busy when the others are empty. “I’ve been here a long time,” she says. She’s refined. Warm. Probably 50. I tell her I want a good strong Thai massage and had a bad one yesterday. She goes inside. Chats to someone. Comes back out…

Thailand Travel 34: Nai Yang lunch at a surprise local market

October 3, 2016 – 4:46 am

Search and you will find. No need in fact to search. Just take a walk and chances are you’ll find a market. Fresh and local. The equivalent but down-home and just-how-it’s-always-been version of the San Francisco Ferry Plaza Saturday farmer’s market.

Thailand Travel 33: When in doubt, take the road less traveled to Nai Yang Beach

September 30, 2016 – 8:24 am
Nai Yang Beach Phuket

In the morning I read in my Lonely Planet that Nai Yang Beach is exceptional and part of Sirinat National Park. It is 15 minutes from the airport, but no plane noises to be heard. To quote: “This is one of the sweetest slices of the island.” Lucky me!

Thailand travel 32: Duck curry at Kopitiam by Wilai in Phuket Town

September 28, 2016 – 5:23 am

I believe home is where the heart is, and we carry our hearts with us, like our breath, so anywhere and everywhere is home. And being “at home” on the move has a sense of adventure while “home” in the conventional sense comes with duties and suchlike.

Thailand travel 31: Dinner with top Chef Tammasak Chootong (Noi) at Suay

September 28, 2016 – 3:05 am
Chef Tammasak Chootong at Suay

The strips of texture, it turns out, that I thought might be strips of mushroom, is young bamboo, grated. There are mushrooms. There is onion, red chili and spring onion, a mix of intense and subtle flavors. The rice noodle roll is somehow sensual in texture; the fish plump and decadently fatty and warm. Perhaps another nine on the mouth orgasm scale.

Thailand travel 30: Magical mystery Phuket Town outdoor market lunch

September 26, 2016 – 9:35 am
Old Town Phuket outdoor market scene.

Old Phuket Town is cool to roam and the outdoor market is is a great lunchtime spot. I relish my final days of “freedom,” which is what traveling typically feels like. Not like I am not free at home. But traveling, I am free from most commitments, I guess. And there is freedom of seeing so much and doing so much when it doesn’t feel like doing but like “being” in a novel place.

Thailand travel 29: Island hopping on Rose and Thong Krut Sunday lunch

September 24, 2016 – 9:45 am
Beach Restaurant Thong Krut crispy calamari.

The next morning, Sunday, we drive right down the island to the family-run Beach Restaurant at Thong Krut fishing village on Koh Samui. It’s a fave or Richard and Barb. And it’s fabulous.

Thailand travel 28: From Bangrak Market to Fisherman’s Village on foot

September 24, 2016 – 7:47 am
Not brave enough to try a cricket.

At the Bangrak fish, meat and veggie market, fishermen are pulling in on the beach and unloading their catch straight into the market. It’s busy, busy. Locals shopping on Friday arvy for the weekend. A TV crew in action at one of the stands. The vendors an eclectic bunch, ever ready to engage in hand-gestures and attempts to explain.