Following up Amy Yu’s post on “Cranberry White Chocolate Macadamia Cookies” on food that are favored during exam times, I have inclination to always look for drinks (usually coffee or tea) during stressed midterm periods. Even as I am writing this post in between studying for my midterms and worrying about weekly assignments for classes, I am sipping on Wawa coffee. I look for drinks (during the exam periods, I am always addicted to them) more than sweets (although I love cookies and cupcakes) I guess because drinks just last longer. While I try to concentrate on something and therefore stressed at the same time, I would repeat the same action without really being aware of it. If I had some sweet treat next to me while studying for a test, then I would constantly grab a piece of that and bring it to my mouth, chew, swallow and repeat the same action without being aware that I am getting full and getting fat. Whereas for drinks, although I would repeat the same action of sipping (since the drinks are usually hot, I cannot drink too much at a time), it would just last longer. Okay. Enough being said about how I got addicted to drinks while studying for midterms, after drinking coffee and tea from Starbucks, Mark’s Café and Wawa (all for convenience of proximity– they are mediocre drinks, personally), I wanted to drink something of new and of distinct flavor that would satisfy my tiredness of dullness I was having from same coffee and tea every day. Daydreaming about new and peculiar flavors, the memory of having this Thai drink at Thai Singha House on 39th and Chestnut passed suddenly my mind.
My first exploration of Thai food was during my first year at Penn when my friend took me to Thai Singha House for lunch on one Saturday. I remember I had shrimp Pad Thai which was also excellent (to my personal opinion it’s the best Pad Thai on campus), and my friend asked me if I wanted to try Thai Ice Tea as she was ordering hers. She explained to me that it’s one of the drinks that people have extreme opinions on, those who like it really like it and those who don’t do not want to try it again. So I’ve decided to try this as it sounded very interesting. When I took a first deep sip, the flavor that I could not describe with any other food or ingredient swished through my mouth. It was too unique that I could not decide whether I liked it or not just by one sip. In courtesy of my friend, I took another sip and another and I was actually getting into it. It was sort of an awakening and also a funny moment as my other friend who tried Thai Ice Tea with me for the first time did like it so much yet neither of us really knew how to describe its flavor.
Having the memory pass through my mind, I made a quick visit back to Singha Thai House from Van Pelt. The restaurant was very vibrant with lots of people since it was about dinner time. I’ve ordered my Sweet Thai Ice Tea and Shrimp Pad Thai again but this time for take out since I was in a midst of cramming for my midterm. While I was waiting, I got to see a waiter making Thai Ice Tea by pouring already extracted Thai tea from its leaves and mixing with half & half cream (unfortunately, I was talking on the phone with a friend so I could not get to take a picture of this process). This time, I could more enjoy the taste of tea as I was getting more used to it. And it actually tasted sweeter than my first try. But it was definitely worth walking to 39th and Chestnut from Van Pelt for its distinctive taste that I was craving for. Actually, since it has already been a week since I made the exploration, I am craving Sweet Thai tea again as I am writing this post and finishing my Wawa coffee.
Monday, October 15, 2012