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Noodle Trails, a travel memoir: Fair Trade,…
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Noodle Trails, a travel memoir: Fair Trade, Dung Trade, and Travels in…

by Eileen Kay

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Eileen is a traveler, not a tourist. From the title we know she will write of travel adventures in Thailand, but she also offers great observations of her side trips to Vietnam and Cambodia. In Thailand her trips included Bangkok, Chiang Mai, and several forays to islands other than popular ones such as Phuket. Although she wrote that she knew where Pattaya is, she did not write much about it. Of particular interest to travelers is her ability and desire to proceed in a direction and see where it ends up. This is the sign of a true traveler.

I was worried in the first approximately one-third of the book about the emphasis on her feelings about the Tsunami tragedy and ceremonies surrounding an anniversary of it. I have no personal inclination to dwell on horrific events; they happened and we are left to move on, not to celebrate the gruesome particulars. She wrote that she was from Lockerbie, so there was a connection to that tragedy. I began to wonder if I was reading something by a disaster junkie. She redeemed herself toward the end of the book (in my opinion) when she refused to visit Toul Sleng (the genocide museum) in Phnom Penh. She and I have a shared experience; I also declined visits to it as well as to the Killing Fields.

The entire idea of the Fair Trade organization and its activities was entirely new to me. Great stuff. Her descriptions of food were extensive; there might be a cookbook spin-off business possibility here. I was in suspense throughout the book as to what illnesses she might contract. I have lived in the area for almost 30 years and have not been nearly as adventurous in the culinary area as this author.

This is a fine, quick read of particular interest to travelers such as myself, those who keep travelling and forgetting to go “home”.
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  ajarn7086 | Jan 23, 2016 |
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