The royal Palace, Vimaneck mansion, and emerging illness

Bangkok Travel Blog

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The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
I slept lovely last night and enjoyed breakfast just as much as the smooth airco in the hotel room. Temperatures are very warm and the sky is blue, things couldn't have been nicer. We leave for the flower and vegetable market, which I like a lot for the same reasons as I liked China Town: there are many odd things to see, many colors and smells and tastes and people. We have a delicious pancake made of cocos at one of the stalls, while strolling through the buzzy morning atmosphere. To bad flowers don't last that long, else I would have bought bouquets of them to take back home. I would love one of those flower chains to hang hang in my car for "bonne route", yet I don't have a car, so it is useless to buy one. I'll need to come back when time is there :)

After the market we visit the Royal Palace complex.
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
It is truly breathtaking. The sun is high at the sky by now and all the statues and walls and buildings are reflecting the warm light on their golden surface. It is like the whole complex is enlightened, and in some way, it actually is. The architecture is wonderful as well. I love the forms and the perspectives, but above all the bright colors and the use of space. After some minutes I have to stop myself from not filling the whole of my 4Gig memory card with pictures of this stunning place. In the temple stands the most admired Buddha image in Thailand, or so I am told: the Emerald Buddha. The floor here is crowded with people staring up to this little statue, all green and dressed in a golden outfit. I have to admit is it indeed wonderful, even that small and that high away, which makes it hard to see the details.
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
I crouch on the ground between the other people.

Soon I find myself surrounded by mainly Thai people. In front of me to students exchange lotuses, on my left a parent teaches his little girl how to sit in the right praying position, and to my right an old man bows to the ground in respect for the Buddha. I am to amazed to do anything but watch the events around me, the Buddha and the inside of the temple (which is equally nice). After a good 10 minutes I look around and notice every one of my tour group is already gone. But I don't feel like leaving yet so stay just were I am. I arrive therefor pretty late at the meeting point, but nobody complains. I can't help I need more than few minutes to take in this place. But maybe for others it isn't that interesting, since you can't take any photo's of it.
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
They've probably spend more time outside the door, trying to zoom in to the Buddha with their expensive lenses... Whatever satisfies them, I guess.

After hanging around in the temple area we go to the residential area, where Mac starts his explanations. All of a sudden I start to feel really sick and sweaty, with terrible cramps. At first I thought it would go away, but after a good five minutes I was pretty sure it wouldn't. Not paying attention any longer to Mac's story, I search for a pill in my backpack, thinking nothing more than "I need a toilet, NOW". Yet the explanation takes another 5 minutes, during which I have to try extremely hard not to... Well I'm not going to share any details here. All I can say is that when I finally found a toilet it was the only one not occupied, and dirty as hell.
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
That means sticky floors, awful smell, dirty paper in the bin, and even droppings on the back of the seat. Normally I would back out immediately in disgust, but the fact that I didn't and actually used that toilet should describe the situation. I popped another 2 pills, which I thought would stop me from needing the lavatory for the next to months, but in fact they don't help at all. Yet I feel better for a moment, except from the cramps that don't seem to ease... So although the buffet looks delicious, I eat nothing but dry rice this noon, which urges itselfs out of my insides only 30 minutes later.

Cramps only get worse during the afternoon, but I try not to concentrate on them as we are visiting the wooden Vimaneck palace in Dusit Park. We also encounter a huge iguana their, which don't live in Belgium so was quite a spectacle on it's own for us simple tourists :) The Vimaneck was nice, but I would not visit again.
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
Yet I do think it is a must, because of it's size and the historical objects that are showed here. Yet we should have done this before the palace, because it can't compete in any sense to the beauty of that. Except for the Iguana, we also encounter a thermometer clock that states 35°C, you just gotta love that. For a second I don't even feel sick :)

We return to the hotel pretty early, so everyone can clean up for the diner that night. Yet all I'm capable of is crouching into a little ball on the bed and count the seconds between the waves of cramps, then run to the toilet, get back on the bed, run to the toilet,... I feel really bad not only because of the pain (I've got a bit sick before of temperature and food change in Spain and Italy, but never anything like this), but also because I seem to be the only one that's sick.
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
Of all people, even all those aged ones, I am the bloody one to get sick! Can't I have anything?

After a while of searching something to blame I start to think it is because of the antibiotics I got earlier to get rid of my earache soon, so I'd be able to fly. Antibiotics = no more resilience for the next 6 months, so that must be it. Having found some cause doesn't make me feel better though. And I need to get back on my feet soon because their is diner. Not like have any interest in the food, but there is this show of traditional dances that comes with it, and that one I don't want to miss.

So at 8pm I'm sitting at this long low table that at first looks like you have to sit next to it on the ground. But we wouldn't be on a tourists tour if they wouldn't have found something to make that more comfortable for us poor Westerners.
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
So there is a hole dug in the ground, under the table, where you can put your legs and feet in. We are actually sitting on a bench, but it feels like sitting on the floor. Food again looks great. We get all this little casseroles filled with several dishes. But I'm not eating anything but the bouillon, just concentrating on breathing normally and maintaining in a suitable position, as I don't want to look like a freak, crawling up each time a cramp appears.

When I get changed to go to bed some hours later I notice that I have scratched imprints of my fingernails all over my sides. Ouch! Yet the dancing was ok, touristy but nice, and so I am also glad I didn't stay in the hotel. After all, it wouldn't have made any difference. And I'm not planning on missing anything of this trip.
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
Not a second. That is the exact phrase I use to mantra myself to sleep. It works pretty well, and I fell asleep with the idea that everything will be better tomorrow.


Daydream Believer - The Monkeys
dicksiem says:
Great story.....I wanna go back ....NOW !! :D
Posted on: Apr 01, 2008
cmgervais says:
I had the same "issue" in Morocco and it lasted 5 weeks! I hope you are better now...

Nice photos! I love Thailand.
Posted on: Mar 21, 2008
Pearl510 says:
Yes it is. Thailand is amazing :) Sick or not, you just got to love it.
Posted on: Mar 21, 2008
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The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
The Royal Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo
Vimanmeck Palace
Vimanmeck Palace
Flower market
Flower market
Flower market
Flower market
Flower market
Flower market
This is why the flower market is o…
This is why the flower market is …
Tuk Tuk
Tuk Tuk
Such a cute little bus!
Such a cute little bus!
Market
Market
Im a sucker for spicy dishes... I…
I'm a sucker for spicy dishes... …
Market
Market
Market
Market
Market
Market
Market
Market
Market. Mmmm, I love the exotic fr…
Market. Mmmm, I love the exotic f…
Traditional Thai dance
Traditional Thai dance
Traditional Thai dance
Traditional Thai dance
Bangkok
photo by: Deats