I love food, it’s what fuels me ( I don’t just mean it in the literal sense but yes that too ). While it all started with an enthusiastic stomach and curious palate, over the last 2 years I’ve taken to the kitchen and really am enjoying the entire process of buying my produce, cooking it and trying to figure out how to improve or innovate. I’ve learnt to appreciate vegetables more believe it or not, 70% ( maybe more ) of the food I cook is vegetarian. I enjoy it but it stems out of sheer laziness because I can’t be bothered to cut and clean meat or fish. While I am lazy, that doesn’t mean I don’t cook with meat entirely.
Interestingly enough, one of my happy places is a local market. I live right next to one and have grown up haggling for potatoes and onions and I can’t imagine ever having to do my daily shopping from a grocery store or one of those fancy gourmet ones. When I travel, I make it a point to go to their local markets because even though I can’t take back fresh produce it’s a joy to see it and experience the sights, sounds and smells at these markets.
While visiting Thailand I went to several markets in Krabi, Bangkok and Chiang Mai however all of them pale in comparison to the ever popular RISKY market just outside of Bangkok. I’ve been to the floating market but despite several trips to the country hadn’t ever been here or heard of this one.
The reason it’s called that is because the entire market place is set in the middle of a railway track next to a station which if you can imagine is a very active station! That means there is a train that comes rumbling down the track more than once a day and with just a few minutes of prior notice every single vendor picks up their stalls and produce to jump to the side and make way for the train. The minute the train passes, they jump right back out and go back to business. It’s unbelievable!
I’m told you can purchase a ticket and get on the train but sadly when I visited, the train wasn’t operational for a couple of months. Which also means I didn’t get the action packed live show of these skillful vendors. The market however was a complete delight and despite thinking I wouldn’t I bought fresh spicy dynamite like red chilies and a bunch of dehydrated mushrooms from the market. Mighty pleased with my loot, I spent the rest of my time there just trying to get out of the way since locals do NOT like ambling tourists specially the trigger friendly ones always keen to snap a picture of what they consider random. I was gently pushed and pointedly stared at for photographing a basket of chilies and to be honest I can’t blame the poor woman for thinking I’m positively insane and possibly annoying.
If you’re curious and would like to visit Maeklong Station is where all the action is !