Volterra's In Pattaya, ThailandI am magnetised by auspicious significance.
Having recently moved on from a 3 week sex tourism holiday in Sodom on Sea, aka Pattaya, Thailand, I am here to tell you I yearn again for pasta and Italian cooking. Staying temporarily in Melbourne, Australia, I seem to be in a part of the city environs uncontaminated by an Italian presence. That is to be found in the older city, the inner city, while I am located in the newer, outer suburbs favoured mostly by Vietnamese, Lao, Khmer, Chinese, Indians, Sudanese and Balkanese. As I prowl the shopping centres I hear from speaking passers-by about 20% English. How Australia has changed.
And for the better, I hasten to add. This is so far advanced beyond the mono-lingual mono-cultural sterility I grew up in 50 and more years ago. The local library here has sections in many of the languages from the countries I've listed above, and more than that as well, such as Polish, which I noticed the other day. But unfortunately there aint an Italian restaurant in the precinct.
So I'll tell you about an Italian eatery I inhabited while in The Land of Sex. It's called Volterra's, located in an alley off soi VC, in Pattaya, the beach resort famous for its girlie bars and known to a man of my type for its high profile ladyboy and femboy and gayboy presence.
Upon seeing the sign, the auspiciousness attracted me immediately. You see, I was initially trained in population biology, a wonderful deeply meaningful discipline so relevant to a modern world of climate change and the disasters of animal and plant extinctions, happening at rates faster now than ever before, almost all due to human activity. And from Mathematical Ecology 101 through to the advanced levels of professionalism we draw our succour from a set of fundamental equations that describe the growth and interactions of populations, and how their behaviour governs the patterns of nature. These equations were essentially given to us by two well known mathematicians you will have never heard of: Alfred Lotka and Vito Volterra. In fact what we now refer to as the Lotka-Volterra equations have grown into Lotka-Volterra systems; that is, the kind of systems that consist of interacting plant and animal (and human) populations.
Vito Volterra, the Italian mathematician, is consequently one of my (minor) culture heroes.
Hence the auspicious significance of unexpectedly seeing his name given to this restaurant hidden off the way in soi VC, a few hundred metres from the guesthouse in which I was staying. Voletrra is also the name of a small but ancient town in Tuscany, so the link with my mathematical hero is coincidental. In fact the walls of the place are decorated with various images of the town, not the scholar. Never mind, it was auspicious for me.
The nosh was good as it turned out. I ate their spaghetti bolognese 3 times, and another evening I tried a penne and asparagus dish which was nice also.
Now in the pasta-sterile Melbourne southeast I yearn for some more Volterra's grub.