I have the pleasure of visiting this wonderful country to a speak at the F5 Thailand Agility Conference. The Agility conferences are designed to bring together IT geeks to talk and innovate. (more to come on that in a later post)
It is my first time visiting Bangkok and let me tell you… it’s pretty sweet. Day one, after checking in, I stepped out to see the city. First off, I felt like a giant and secondly.. there are so many people!
Hunger led me to my first adventure. With a pocket of baht (thai currency) I walked into a small restaurant. My first clue of adventure should have been… It’s packed with locals. I sat down and was handed a menu, piece of paper and a pencil. I looked at the menu and spotted a minor problem. It was all in Thai. I didn’t want to appear like the silly American tourist, so I looked at what other people were doing. It seemed like you were supposed to write down what you want and hand it to the server as she rushed to and fro. How hard could it be?
Enter: The Copy Paste ordering method.
First, I looked at the menu for patterns. There were prefixes that appeared repeatedly. I assumed that the prefixes meant the dish was similar, either in construction or contents.
Then, I looked for the shortest words.
Finally, using my horrible art skills, I wrote down and order, and hoped for the best. –>
My first attempt to place the order did not go well. The matriarch of the restaurant (very kindly looking older thai woman), came by, looked at my paper, and said something that sounded very stern. Don’t have to speak Thai to understand a disapproving tone!
Apparently something was wrong with my order. The words must have been too short. So, time to modify:
Attempt number 2 to order went much better, as I snuck it to the server rushing past. For 10 tense minutes I sat wondering… what did I just do?
The food arrived, and to my delight.. I somehow ordered a spicy prawn salad, basil beef salad, and some form of crispy noodle chicken. As well as a lemonade! Score 1 for the dangerous diners.
Lesson Learned: Don’t be afraid to jump right into a new situation, it could be the best choice you make all day.