Nathan and I are on a pretty tight budget here on Koh Samui, since we have to follow through with our claim that it’s cheaper to be on holiday in Thailand than to live in Australia. I have even downloaded an app for my phone to register all our expenses. This is a pretty big step for us. So far, the Thai holiday is winning hands down on the budget-o-meter, and we’re off the scale on the smug-o-meter.
As part of our budgetary measures, we’re only dining out once a week. Last week, our restaurant of choice was Dr Frogs, the reason for which I’m sure is self-evident. In the days leading up to our dinner/appointment, we could both be heard singing They Might Be Giants’ “Doctor Worm” almost constantly, but with the words appropriately changed: “He’s not a real doctor, but he is a real frog, he is an act-u-al frog”.
There were no doctors nor frogs at Dr Frogs, as we expected, but it was a fine meal. How could it not be with this write-up in the local Dining Guide:
“Anything’s possible. In this day and age of genetic engineering, scientists can produce the perfect vegetables and livestock. Giving us exactly what we want, such as pest-free tasty corn and succulent lean beef. So it comes as no surprise that restaurateurs are eventually getting the message that we want total perfection in our dining experiences too, and are creating places that have every possible benefit and absolutely no negative aspects. And Dr Frogs is a prime example.”
Yes, that’s right. Genetically-engineered foods are total perfection, and have absolutely no negative aspects. Just like Dr Frogs. Delicious.
We’ve noticed that there all kinds of such doctors in Thailand. In the special “clean foods” section of the supermarket we saw a shrink-wrapped winter melon labelled “Dr Melon”, and every second product in the toiletries aisle has been to medical school. Vietnam is on its way to this mentality too, where images of shiny factories and laboratories and people in surgical masks are the best way to market anything, especially food. Thailand is obviously one step ahead, and will no doubt soon backflip and go for the all natural, organic, unmedicated angle. Dr Melon and Dr Frogs will be out of work.
To finish, I would like to mention two of my most favourite animals. The first is the geoduck, but not what a geoduck actually is, which is this revolting, phallic clam:
But the geoduck in my mind, which is an intrepid, globe-trotting duck interested in geological formations. He’s friends with Toilet Duck.
Secondly, there’s the waterbear (aka moss piglet!), which is similarly not a bear. However, the waterbear in my mind could in no way beat the waterbear of reality, which looks like this:
Hello, my funny friend.