I've had a rough week, as I haven't been feeling well. It is not relevant to what I want to share with you, other than to note, that as I journeyed to the main part of the city today, I felt thankful to Nong, the owner of Aum vegetarian restaurant, (which I highly recommend). Last Saturday, she had given to me, for no charge, two long aloe shoots from her garden. They were wonderful in keeping a fever cooled that I had no idea I would be having when she gave me the aloe. I love Aum's food. It is fresh and delicious every time!
I also noticed today, so many of the special details that the Thai people bring to their lives and the lives of others. They do not lead easy lives. They work very hard, for very little pay. Yet they are calm, service oriented and smile more than any people I've ever met.
From the most rickety looking cart, the food is always hand prepared - fresh vegetables hand sliced and chopped, fruits hand peeled and cut, and fresh from that day's morning market or hand picked from their own or neighbor's gardens. You can watch the people doing the cutting and peeling right on the streets, as they often sit on crates and prepare for the big Sunday night market crowds.
And even from an inexpensive food purchase amounting to $1.00 or $2, or any purchase for that matter, you get a Thai thank you with their traditional wai or Thai slight bow, with hands in prayer and a smile.
The many other items that are for sale in the open air market are bright and colorfully displayed with care and attention to detail. It's not in a fancy way at all, as the people and goods are simple. Somehow though, the displays all have that magical care evident.
Which leads me to my lunch today at Rustic and Blue. This place is shear artistry. Each dish that is prepared is so beautiful that people are taking pictures as their orders are brought to them. Even the coffees and tea presentation are done with such care. This place is small, and 'rustic' fits to describe it, as it is charming with age. The prices here are rather expensive by Thai standards, as the dish above was 185THB ($5.30). This type of artistry back home in the States and elsewhere would only be available to the upper middle income and wealthy who frequent higher end establishments.
The ingredients: Chinese kale, spinach, pineapple,flaxseeds, dates, cashew milk, vegan granola and fruits - all organic and most ingredients come from the owners own farm.
It was delicious, as was the blueberry macaroon tea. It looked like love and felt like love - such care was put into the creation of this food, I could actually feel the care. And it didn't feel like it was in a "I'm making a masterpiece" way, as the Thai people are humble. Rather, "I love what I am doing and am happy to serve this food that is nourishing, fresh and so healthy" was the vibration I was feeling. And dish after dish came out looking equally beautiful.
I experience the same attention to loving details each day as my room is freshened. The floral arrangements are so beautiful, as you can see above. The staff here at Eurasia Hotel are so caring, kind and special. Each day, they smile and wai and do everything possible to make guests comfortable. And there is not a sense of drudgery that is evident. It is amazing to me, and I am so grateful each day for them and this lovely place to stay. And believe me, I am not staying at a high end hotel, but a modest and very reasonable place.
I am feeling Grateful and Humbled by the Thai people, who have little and yet give so much. It has been such a privilege to experience this culture.
Sending You Love from Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Thank you for taking this journey with me!
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