Walking down any city street in Thailand is an assault on the senses. Motorcycles whiz by, tuk tuks honk their horns, thousands of colors from the various wares being sold attack the eyes. However, most striking among the sensory overload, are the intense smells of the street food. The diversity and amount of food that can be consumed at any one time is limitless.
To your right a vendor shoos flies away from the fish she is selling. They are still alive, mouths agape as they lie on the streetside display. Another woman walks down the street with her cart of various Asian fruits, which for 20 Bhat (less than one dollar) she will quickly slice and bag for you. Walk a few feet further to find a vendor flipping noodles of all sorts in a large wok. You can hear them sizzle as a plume of smoke rises from the wok when he adds copious amounts of pepper. Anything without spice is just boring to a Thai.
In order to compliment fast paced city life, almost anything can be found on a stick. Meats in particular seem to come exclusively on sticks. Anything from grilled pork to chicken to hot dogs to chicken organs can be found skewered and ready on any street corner. I have personally found the orgasmic, and probably coronary failure inducing, sausage on a stick to be the best.
However, the most exotic thing that I have found among these eclectic streetside carts have been insects of various shapes and sizes. Crickets, larvae, and cockroaches all make an appearance. For those brave enough to try, you will be pleasantly surprised to find that the crickets may offer an alternative to the potato chip craving which is sure to set in after a few weeks. The cockroaches on the other hand are an acquired taste. With each bite the taste changes eventually becoming fruity and tangy by the time you reach mid thorax. Eating one of these little beauties is sure to be a on time experience for me.
Thailand has a food centric culture and it seems that you could eat here for a lifetime and yet still find new things to try. Each region adds its own spin to each dish, further adding to the diversity. Two weeks in to the trip, my bucket list of thai foods to try just keeps growing.