Exploring the Grand Palace and Meeting up with Newtampo!
Bangkok Travel Blog› entry 5 of 43 › view all entries
March 1st, 2008 – by: worldcitizen
I was wearing bermuda shorts which I thought would be fine but I was told they weren't, and someone pointed in the direction of building where I could rent a sarong.
When I entered, I was thoroughly impressed with the shiny magnificence of the Palace. I didn't know what anything was or where to begin so I just walked around.
I once again started walking aimlessly and found a market nearby. There were all sorts of interesting looking foods, but I couldn't resist trying some Pad Thai. After a delicious lunch, I headed back to the hotel. I made it back quickly and I was proud of myself for navigating even the tiniest bit of Bangkok. When I got back to the hotel, I made an (expensive!) call home and when I was done, I found New waiting outside! She imagined I was taller than I am... I thought she would be taller too! We went back down the way I had come a little bit and took a boat across the river to another temple.
After crossing the river again, we headed to the MBK shopping center. Or at least I think that's where we went. I was curious to see the MBK everyone talked about and I was also thinking about buying a CD player because the old MP3 player that I had dug up specificially for the trip crapped out somewhere over the Pacific Ocean. I had never used it before then and didn't have the information for it so I figured it was a lost cause. I am always behind with technology which is okay with me, but the thought of not having music for a month was scary. You can easily buy cheap copies of CDs in Bangkok.
After we left the shopping center we went to get some ice cream around the corner. I ordered what New ordered which was a big cup of ice cream with strawberries and I think sweetened condensed milk and "ice". It was really good and refreshing in the Bangkok heat. The heat took a toll on my ice cream though and it was melting on my hands and New kept offering me napkins.
I got back to my hotel about 15 minutes before our group meeting. I went up to my room and my roommate, Somita, was there. Apparently she had also gotten there a day early and slept in a double room. The hotel receptions basically said the same thing to us: "Your roommate is here. No she's not. Yeah, she's here. She's coming tomorrow so I'll give you a double room and she'll move in there tomorrow." I guess she had just been around the hotel more that day so they eventually had her move into my room. She was the same age as me and had definitely caught the travel bug.
We went down to the meeting to meet our group. It was a mix of ages from Canada, England and the United States. The youngest were a guy and girl from England, 19 year olds who were traveling together on a six month round the world journey and this was the beginning of their trip. They were doing small parts of the trip with groups, but most of it on their own. I know I am not too much older, but I thought it was so cute. My roommate and started calling them "The Kids" and the nickname stuck with the group. Our leader called herself "Cat" although her real name was a much longer Thai name.
After the meeting my roommate and I were hungry and headed to Khao San Road. It was dark, but the atmosphere was completely different from the night before. It was the night before an election so all alcohol was banned. There were still hoardes of people on the road, but it definitely lacked the lawless feeling of the night before. We saw a women with a cart selling the infamous smelly durian fruit. We knew we had to give it a try. It really wasn't bad at all! It's not something I would eat daily, but I wouldn't mind eating it again. I still can't figure out why Andrew Zimmern (Bizarre Foods host) of all people can't stand it.
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