It’s amazing sometimes what I will go through just to get a few pictures for a blog entry. Last night was an example of the extreme.
I’ve been helping promote the Hua Hin Food Festival for weeks on my Hua Hin Expat News website (www.huahinexpatnews.com), and was curious to see whether it was worthwhile. My only problem was transportation.
I could have opted for a motorcycle taxi at 100 baht each way ($6 total), or taken the public songthaew taxi for 30 baht each way. With either choice, I still had to walk the quarter mile to the main road. The motor taxi, however, would drop me off at the front entrance of the festival, while the songthaew would drop me off 3/4 mile from the entrance.
I opted for the far cheaper option, with the walking. Then the fun started.
First, a green songthaew drove right past me as I waved on Petchkasem Road. So I waited. And waited.
Then a red songthaew came by. I am not familiar with the route of this taxi so asked the driver if he was going to soi 19, where the festival was held. He nodded yes, I got on, and he ended his run at soi 51. A bit short of my destination.
On top of that, he left me a quarter mile from the main road, where I needed to be to catch another taxi, either home or continuing on. When I reached the main road, I seriously considered turning back but I chose to push on and caught a green taxi. After all, I was halfway there.
It was a longer walk from the main road than I remember from my trips to the immigration office, which is located opposite the Queen’s Park, where the festival was being held. From outward appearances, with cars parked on both sides of the road for a quarter mile before the entrance, it looked like a good crowd.
It was. Lots of people, including a sprinkling of farang (us white people). There had to be 100 food booths, strung along four corridors under the open sky. Fortunately, there was no rain, as there was the night before.
It was all quite overwhelming. So many choices. In addition to the local Thai restaurants, there were also elaborate stalls set up by the big hotels and resorts here, staff all in uniforms. This is certainly the biggest food event I’ve seen here, showcasing much of what Hua Hin has to offer.
After walking the aisles a couple of times and taking the photos below, I thought I might select some food to take home. First stop was a stall with a whole roasted pig on a slab in front. Asking for an order of sliced pork – takeaway – the young woman looked around and realized she had no packaging for takeaway.
Apparently, most of the food vendors left their takeaway plastic at home, thinking this was a mostly sit down and eat crowd, which it was. After seeing that a few more stalls also did not have takeaway plastic, I decided to eat at home, where I had duck breast marinating in soy sauce, rosemary, Greek basil and garlic.
Again, the long walk back to the main road, where a green taxi miraculously showed up within 5 minutes. With the green taxi, you have to change songthaews at the fresh market area, which is a mile from my house. After changing songthaews, I would still face about half that far to walk, so I decided to walk once again instead of taking the second half of the ride. But first I made a stop at a small mobile food stall that sells kanom beuang, chips with coconut sugar cream and other fillings. I had noticed in the taxi as we went by the stall that it was the same woman I buy from when I go to the beach. She recognized me. 20 baht for a very nice snack.
Was pretty exhausted when I finally made it home. Here’s some food festival: