published Monday, June 23rd, 2014

Swollen creek not enough to halt delivery of food order in Alaska

In this photo released by Mike Laiti, Anuson "Knott" Poolsawat, owner of Knott's Take Out in North Pole, walks across Clear Creek with an order of take out food to reach Laiti and Brandon Borgens, two customers stranded along the Richardson Highway on Saturday, June 21, 2014, near Salcha, Alaska.
In this photo released by Mike Laiti, Anuson "Knott" Poolsawat, owner of Knott's Take Out in North Pole, walks across Clear Creek with an order of take out food to reach Laiti and Brandon Borgens, two customers stranded along the Richardson Highway on Saturday, June 21, 2014, near Salcha, Alaska.
Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

FAIRBANKS, Alaska — A little thing like a flooded creek was not enough to keep an Alaska restaurant owner from delivering Thai ribs and fried rice to stranded customers over the weekend.

Anuson "Knott" Poolsawat, owner of Knott's Take Out in North Pole, forded the swollen waters of Clear Creek to reach two customers stuck along the Richardson Highway, the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner.

Mike Laiti and Brandon Borgens were completing a multi-day drive Saturday night up the Alaska Highway when they called in their order to the restaurant, which was near closing.

As they approached Clear Creek, they learned a sinkhole had developed from heavy rain near the creek. The state Department of Transportation closed the bridge.

Laiti called Poolsawat to cancel their order at the restaurant more than 25 miles away in North Pole.

"I called him and said, 'Hey man, I can't make it,' and he said, 'Not a problem, I'll come cross the waters,'" Laiti said. "He called me and said, 'Should I bring a boat?'"

Poolsawat arrived with takeout boxes containing Thai barbecue ribs and Thai fried rice. Another box held a "dinosaur egg" — a hardboiled egg that's fried and covered in a sweet sesame sauce.

Poolsawat hiked up his shorts and waded through the creek, holding the takeout boxes over his head. The cold water was hip-deep.

Poolsawat had already done them a favor by staying open late, Laiti said. The delivery was beyond expectations.

"He'd help anybody out. He's just a really good positive attitude, just a good guy," said Laiti. "He's definitely a goofball character and the food he makes is great."

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