Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Recently, Gavin and I took a trip outside the city center to enjoy the countryside and visit some creatures at a wildlife rescue center.  Right when our backsides were starting to fall asleep after nearly two hours on our motor scooter, we came across a packed BBQ stand.  As we pulled up and parked our hog in the squishy roadside mud, the local crowd stared quizzically at us as though we were the first foreigners to have crossed the boundary into their sleepy hamlet, let alone dined at their restaurant. (In actuality, hundreds of tourists pass through daily on their way to the Cu Chi Tunnels).  The restaurant was more a series of shacks sheltered by army-issue tents than an actual structure.  The metal tables were scuffed and filthy, the ground was littered with trash, and there were rolls of toilet paper on the tables rather than napkins. Are they for wiping your hands off post-meal or for the instantaneous roadside shits you get after eating there?  
However, the food smelled and looked amazing.  There was a little old gal out front barbecuing pork and chicken to perfection and the sweet smoke filled the air.  We each ordered the pork, or rather pointed at it and grunted affirmatively.  We were delighted by what we received.
 Our spread comprised of a pile of rice, a thin and tender pork chop, fresh veggies, chili fish sauce, and a cup of zucchini soup.  The pork was perfectly prepared and could be easily cut with a spoon and fork (I haven’t seen a knife on a table since we’ve been here).  Savory, simple, and delicious.

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