Every weekend we go to the market. That would be the super kind. Yes, the brightly lit food warehouse, modern and soul crushing, the place where you get to choose between ten types of toilet paper, wander three isles of salted and sugary snack foods, and purchase meat wrapped in plastic, stamped with a use by date, and butchered by some unseen hand hiding in the back.
It’s like going to the IMAX theater, it’s all in 3D, and sometimes in 4D, when a plane flies over and the building starts to rumble. There’s usually a woman dressed in a short skirt, screaming into a microphone at top volume, if you don’t buy my shit you’re worthless,”YOU NEED THIS,” she tells us in her very own polite, unthreatening Thai manner. I forget why I’m here. I think it’s to buy some food, I tell myself.
Watch it! There’s unsupervised children in isle ten, sugar crazed madness, making monkey noises and flinging boxes of Ho-Ho’s at one another while their mother passively places frozen dinners into her cart. There are rows of adult diapers to choose from. Two isles over, near the instant coffee (eight varieties), school uniforms are on sale; young middle class fathers and mothers fighting over the last size five shoe.
This morning I woke up and my wife whispered in my ear. “I’m going to the market,” she said. I dressed and went downstairs–because i am a good and dutiful husband (I am really!) I am of course the one who drives, not that my wife is a lousy driver, it’s just my job and I take it seriously, putting on my helmet, thinking about screaming kids, and adult diapers, and one million types of toilet paper each one claiming to do a better job then the other. Oh, turn here, yes,yes, she said. I hadn’t a clue we would end up at a real market. Talat Mai it is called. Exotic Asia you have returned too me. I figured you’d sold out like the rest.