Article Archive for September 2016
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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
My outsize shibori scarf is the most useful item in my luggage. You can use it to cover your shoulders at the Big Buddha temple in Koh Samui, sit on it on grubby bus seats, keep the sun off your arms and shoulders with it, don it in the evening to add a touch of elegance, dry yourself with it, wipe your hands on it when you’ve eaten, use to to keep you warm when the breeze comes up of an evening and lots more.
“You’re living a fantasy movie-set lifestyle,” I comment. My mind travels to where they could be living. In a village in England. OK. English villages can be charming. But this is exotic and there’s no fog and we’re outdoors and the beer is cold. Tables in the sand. Fire artists on the beach. Warm ocean for paddling. A Tiger beer and sixties music in the background.
Durban chef blends tradition, King Shaka’s palate and childhood memories with his inspired hi-end menu featuring isigwaca (quail), umgxabhiso (tripe), …