Thai cooking can oftentimes seems a bit daunting. There's a lot of ingredients that go into a dish but if you stand your ground, you'll begin to understand and see how it all comes together. In most dishes, if not all, there are the 4 flavor profiles that are used and can always be adjusted accordingly to your taste. These 4 flavors (shall we name them the Fantastic Four or Four Flava Flaves?) are sweet (sugar), sour (vinegar w/jalapeños or fresh lime), salty (fish sauce), and spicy (chili). You'll also find that Thai food owes a lot of its unique properties to the fresh herbs that are used such as the ones below:
What looks like the exterior in the picture above of the cooking school is actually an open space where students can learn and pick up some important skills, technique, and knowledge about Thai cuisine. When traveling in Thailand, you'll often find that cooks and their kitchens are outside. Eating "street food" is quite popular and can be incredibly delicious! Most street vendors will dedicate their cart and craft towards making one dish or similar dishes that don't require larger spaces and more supplies than what they need. No trip to Southeast Asia is complete without sitting on a colorful plastic stool, perched over a bowl of hot noodles all the while sweating in the heat and humidity the country has to offer. So don't be afraid to rub elbows with the locals, share tables, and smirk because you've just had an amazing meal all less than a daytime matinee.