Chronicles of a Globetrekker - Day 1 - Amazing Thailand
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Where? The trip planning started with an idea of spending an out-of-town trip (probably in Redang) during the Hari Raya holiday among my office chatmates, Gen and Dru. However, we can't afford to travel 8 hours by land and to ride a 1-hour ferry going to the island, the remaining option that we have is to take the plane. Since we're taking the plane, Dru suggested that we go to Samui Island in Thailand since he has a friend who works there. When we checked the flights to that destination, we found the airfare to be expensive and it appeared that we have to take 2 planes to reach that place. So we decided to go to Bangkok instead. Even though I've been there before, I didn't object because I think it would still be a different experience if I go back once again with my friends.
Who? Now that we've decided our destination, we need to know who's coming with us. I mentioned about this trip to Rey and he said that he said that he's interested to come. We invited a few friends as well to come with us but they all declined (some of them stressed that they don't want to be the 5th wheel on this double date.. oh come on guys!). So this is going to be a trip of four tall people.
When? Our original plan was to take a leave during Hari Raya. However, our Malay colleagues would be the priority during this time so we thought of having it a week before Hari Raya. We chose to have on the 4th of October until the 7th. Fortunately, our leaves were approved with no questions asked.
Our itinerary has been planned for almost 2 months and now everything is set. We have booked our flights via Air Asia. We availed a package and decided to stay at Century Park hotel due to its good feedback from travelers.
And for the big day, we all decided to meet at KL Sentral at 7 AM. Everyone is excited about it (well who's not, right?). Fortunately, I was early (and I was able to blowdry my hair and apply my kikay makeup...bihira lang yun ha). We were able to make it to the 7:30 bus bound to LCCT on that day. After we checked in our luggages, we ate at McDonalds for our breakfast and started to take some pictures (take note, nasa Malaysia pa lang kami nyan ha).
Since all the four of us are tall (we're collectively known as the 4 towers), we all availed the Xpress Boarding option for Air Asia so that we could pick the most convenient seats for us, which are the seats at the first row. It took us 2 hours to get to Bangkok. It was my first time to sit on front and we got to observe the flight attendants during the flight.
Our plane landed at the Suvarnabhumi Airport. This is Bangkok's new airport. It was my first time to arrive in this airport and the first thing that I saw are the 2 demons, which reminded me of the huge statues seen inside Wat Phra Kew. There's nothing much to see at the arrival area. Once we got our luggages, we took some maps and hailed a cab to Century Park Hotel.
It took us 30 minutes to get to the hotel. Even though it was my second time to explore this city, I still can't help but feel amazed - with the way how the roads and fly overs are done in a looping manner and the colorful taxi cabs (blue, pink, orange, etc). It is actually similar to Manila, except for its alphabet shown on its signs and billboards (I don't know what it's called).
After our check-in, we asked the receptionist on how we could get to Ayutthaya. She recommended us to go to the nearest TAT (Tourist Authority of Thailand) office. A Mercedes Benz took us there for 200 baht (which means that I had to shell ot 50 baht, just to experience what its like to ride that car). Once we arrived at the office, we booked a cab that would tour us around the ancient city. The staff were friendly and told us a lot about Bangkok. We noticed that there's a display of bills on different denominations at their table. Rey gave the staff a 20-peso bill so that it could be included to their collection.
After we left TAT, we asked the driver to bring us to the nearest restaurant. We were sooo hungry because we didn't eat our lunch yet and its already 4 PM. The driver took us to a seafood restaurant. However, Dru is allergic to seafood, so we went to a nearby eatery (carinderia) where we had our first taste of authentic Thai food during this trip (yum!).
After we had our "lunch", we asked the locals on how we could go to Cabbages and Condoms, considered to be one of Thailand's best restaurants. It was located a few blocks away from Nana Station of BTS. The restaurant was still closed when we reached that place. We were an hour and a half earlier from its dinner time. Since we had nowhere to go to, we tried to have a foot massage.. and believe me, it was sooo good :) It was relaxing.
After pampering ourselves, we went to Cabbages and Condoms. As what the name suggests, the decors of the restaurant are made of condoms - starting with a giant condom hanging at the entrance. There's an intriguing sign with this message - "Safety First" and around its big letters are sketches of different sexual positions (interesting right? hahahaha!).
The dining area is quite dim, to which Dru commented as romantic (hell yeah, underneath a giant condom lamp hahaha!). The area is open and I think I got some mosquito bites. Enough about the place, the food is great and there was no doubt that it was indeed one of Bangkok's best restaurants. Here's one thing unique about this restaurant: each customer was given a condom after dining - like a fortune cookie to a chinese restaurant. I was glad that we included this place in our itinerary.
Our next destination that night was the Patpong district. For those who's living on another planet, this is the famous prostitution area where all freak shows are staged (which some of my friends labelled as "pe**ek" show). We almost went into one but due to "uncontrollable circumstances", it didn't push through (sayang, may condom pa naman ang mga guys hahahaha!!!). So we ended up hanging in our hotel room playing cards.
It was a long day for us. But it was fun. This is the good thing the first day during travelling - you'll always keep asking for more :)