Treated like a VIP

Nakhon Pathom Travel Blog

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Of the many days I have spent in Bangkok this might have been the best day.  It did not start out this way though.  In the morning a few of us were suppose to meet at a McDonald's restaurant near one of the large malls in Bangkok.  Benny and I got there right on time but we could not find anyone and we thought we had screwed up.  Since it was early I decided to have some breakfast and see what happened.  I had just got to the start of the line when a obviously Thai lady walked up to me and asked if I was Kent.  Nat (funkyweekend1974) had found me and as she was the local organizer this was good. 

Nat had come with one of her friends (cant remember her name, sorry) and her her family's van, which comes with it's own driver.
  WOW.  After we waited for some time we realized no others were coming.  It was very close to the Full Moon Party and I guess some of the others had left for the islands early and others were still sleeping after partying the previous night.  Off we went in the van.

We drove for some time and we arrived at one of the nicer temples I have been in, Phra Pathom Chedi.  This location has been a holy sight for Thai Buddhists since the 4th century and this temple was completed in 1870.  Unlike some of the other Wats I have been to this one seemed to have very few tourists and was full of Thais there to worship.  We spent some time here and had a nice lunch Benny was able to worship and write some good luck notes on some papers for her and me.
  As usual I ended up donating some baht to the temple.  Only trouble was it was super hot but after being in the country for several weeks now I was okay but not really comfortable. 

Back into the van for some much needed air con and off to another place, Sanam Chandra Palace.  Nat chose another great place.  We ended up at a park that I guess was a very old home of one of the previous Kings.  To get there we drove down a narrow lane and parked near a big white wall.  From  the van it looked not that great but I was wrong.  The palace was built in the early part of the 1900's and belonged to King King Vijiravudh (Rama VI).

Once inside we rented (meaning I paid for) a golf cart to get around this large park.
  My first reaction was wow look at all the grass.  Since I had left Canada I had seen very little grass and this place had acres of the stuff.  It was great to see again.  Next I saw some great old buildings that finally showed me some older Thai architecture.  Bangkok has very few older buildings, that are not Wats, left so seeing so many in such a small areas was wonderful.  We spent a long time wandering around, and inside, these buildings.  I had to have a lot of signs translated for me as there was almost no English here.  Only half bad thing was the insides of the buildings are considered very special and so no photos are allowed inside.  One day I want go back here with more time.  If nothing else this park is a good place to cool off during a hot Bangkok day.
  Somehow the old buildings were cool, in the middle of the day, without the use of modern air con.

After the palace it was back into our private van and off to one of the floating markets.  Normally this is done is the morning so we just checked out one of the markets on the riverside and found a place for dinner.  By this point we were quite tired so we found a table right on the river and ordered several Thai dishes to share.  At times like this it is great to have Thais around to order and pick all the good food. 

Almost as soon as we sat down the skies opened up and the rain pounded down.  Good this our cafe had a good roof.  I enjoyed watching the many small and large boats travel along the river.  I noticed some of the other dinners throwing bread into the water and realized they were feeding some fish.
  As soon as you throw one small piece of bread your area and quickly swarmed by the fattest fish I have ever seen.  The cafe made sure we well stocked with bread so we could feed the fish and keep ourselves entertained.

After a good meal it was time to head back into the city.  We split ways for a short time, so we could rest and clean up, before meeting up again at a beer garden.  This beer garden was just outside one the Bangkok's high end shopping centres and had several stages for music.  For a few hours we watched Thais trying to sing American Hip Hop and Rock without much success but with plenty of energy.

after a while it was time to head back to the hotel.  I was very tired but very happy.  I got to see a lot of Thai culture today and was treated very well by Nat.  I now add Nat as one of my best overseas friends.  I am even trying to convince Nat to help me with a business venture in Thailand.  Hint hint Nat.

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Nakhon Pathom
photo by: Pearl510