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Scott McGerik

I consider vacations to be relatively expensive for the reason that what I most want from exotic-to-me locales are new dining experiences, yet, I have more local restaurants, on my to-visit list, featuring inventive or "exotic" cuisine than I have time to visit.

For example, the other day, while driving through a part of St Paul, MN called Frogtown, I counted no less than twenty restaurants featuring Southeast Asian cuisine, many of which I want to dine at, at least once.

Why travel to Southeast Asia when Southeast Asia comes to me? Maybe the authenticity of the food in Southeast Asia is higher but I doubt it is much higher. Can I justify the travel costs to experience the higher authenticity? I don't think so. Especially considering how inexpensive the food is at these local restaurants.

Guojing

Actually, a visit to SE Asia would make more Americans realize that "fortune cookies" are as much a novelty in Asia as it is in US.

We will not get awkward incidents like Seattle Supersonics distributing fortune cookies to the audience for Yao Ming's first game there. =)

Dave Tufte

Oops. Is it OK to say "it's the thought that counts" when our fellow travelers do something like this?

P.S. I heard a few years back that the vast majority of fortune cookies (a U.S. invention) are made in Houston by Hispanic workers.

P.P.S. Reminds me of the Italian restaurant a group of us ate at in London in 1983. My roommate ordered garlic bread, and then when told they had no such thing, insisted that all Italian restaurants have garlic bread. Of course ... others in that group also pronounced Thames phonetically.

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