AT THIS POINT, you don’t know whether to say it’s getting late or getting early. You really need to get to bed. But holy shit you’re hungry.
Thailand – Soup in a bag / pad thai
The woman with the cart will be waiting in front of your hostel, and she’s the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen. The cart is sizzling hot, and you slur as you order. The rice noodles are piled high on a plastic plate, and she mixes in dried shrimp, peanuts, and pepper. That brown sauce she’s pouring over it is fish sauce, soaking the noodles and saturating the shrimp until they puff out into the dish. She tops it off by squeezing a lime into the mixture and then hands it to you.
Your friends order the soup in a bag, and the woman behind the cart drops the beef and vegetables into one bag and the broth into the other. Back in the room, they will burn themselves as they try to pour the contents of one flimsy plastic bag into the other, cursing they didn’t order the noodles hanging limply from the corner of your passed-out mouth.