Monday, May 16, 2005

GOING THE EXTRA MILE



Over breakfast of creamy and herby omelet and Thai dilis, I commented to Thai-Fil friend Steve Alfafara, Cebu Zee Quarterly’s Travel Editor, how Thais go the extra mile in embellishing their foodstuff. Take the lowly dilis, for example. While we Filipinos have gotten used to eating dilis we either fry with sugar or mix in monggo soup in lieu of the killer chicharon, the Thais are already selling theirs in ready-to-eat airtight packs! And that’s not even the point; their dilis is covered in sesame seeds.

Tough luck that we’d even imagine it served that way. Steve, however, said that this is normal to the Thai people. With no conscious effort to be better than its neighbors, Thai products almost always amaze the buyer with “extras”. Everydayland: dilis. Thai Way: dilis with sesame seeds. Everydayland: fried bananas. Thai Way: fried bananas with langka and sesame seeds.

We really have one or two things to learn from our Thailand sister (who is probably the Philippines’ only ‘true friend’ in Southeast Asia, no offense to Indonesia and Malaysia, who are hosting our peace talks with the MILF).

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