You know you're in Bangkok when....
Bangkok Travel Blog› entry 4 of 19 › view all entries
You spend the entire day sweating and sweating and sweating and you long for the cool AC of the SkyTrain! :) Luckily I am dating a man who does not mind that I sweat because he sweats too...we are quite a pair of farangs!
A farang is a westerner and I'm pretty sure it is white westerner, so we are definitely farangs.
I was in a hurry last night so I didn't give too much background so I will try to fill in today.
Our flight was 26 hours total, 19 in the air and the rest on layovers, it was a long day. We crossed the International Date Line so even though we left early Friday morning we did not get in until almost midnight on Saturday.
Bangkok is a city of 12 million and it is full of contrasts. Standing at the SkyTrain station in front of our hotel you can see very expensive high rise condos from one side of the station and shanty towns from the other side.
We are staying a nice hotel. We get breakfast each morning and the number of choices is amazing. In our hotel there are tourists from the US, China, Japan, Lebanon, Egypt, Germany, Russia....all over. And the breakfast seems to accomodate most of those countries. They have eggs and ham for the Americans, yogurt, salad and a variety of Asian choices.
Brian and I were exhausted last night and we were asleep in bed by about 8 p.
Today we took the Sky Train to the river and bought an all day river pass so we could take the boat up to the palace and several temples. As we got on the train we noticed that almost every single person was wearing a yellow shirt today. We had several guesses as to why, Monday is yellow shirt day, yellow is a hard-working color so all workers wear yellow, yellow is the color of the main Thai sports team and they play tonight.....but we finally decided that it has something to do with the King. The King is much loved in Thailand and the people celebrate the King in a number of ways. They stop and play the national anthem twice per day, every house and business has a picture of the King prominently hung and there are billboards all over Bangkok proclaiming God Save the King.
The water taxi is pretty amazing. It is a long, skinny boat with two seats on each side and an aisle down the middle. The Chao Praya river runs through Bangkok and it is completely brown. I asked Brian if he thought there were any fish in there and he said there probably were, but there were no birds to be seen which to me means that there are no fish. The taxis move quickly down the river and when they come to a stop they pull alongside the pier for a moment and everyone jumps off and on.
We stopped at Wat Pho, which is the Temple of the Reclining Buddha. We did not know what to expect, but as you can see from the photos, the reclining Buddha is huge. He is reclining the length of an entire building. The surrounding temple grounds are beautiful with several spires covered in mosaic tiles.
We next walked over to the Grand Palace but it was closed until 1:30 for a celebration for the King...we stilll don't know what the celebration is. :)
We took a "ferry" across the river to see Wat Arun. "Wat" means temple, so there are several wats around town.
We decided we were starving so we jumped back on the ferry across the river, caught the river taxi back down the river and jumped on the sky train for the Siam Center. We knew that we could get good food at Siam Center and that we could sit down in air conditioning, which was even better! We chose a "hot pot" restaurant after walking by and seeing others enjoying the fun.
Tonight we plan to revisit Pat Pong market because last night it was so flooded that we did not get to explore. We are also looking forward to dinner and a bottle of wine.