Bangkok Day 1

Continued from Train to Bangkok.

I slept relatively well for being on a train. Much better than my previous overnight train experience in India from Delhi to Varanasi. RL on the other hand did not sleep very well at all.


We were woken up by music inside our cabin’s PA system. We’ve arrived in the outskirts of Bangkok!


At 6am, breakfast was brought to us. We had ordered and paid for the breakfast last night while we ordered dinner. Boiled rice with shrimp and pork. YUM!!


Give your kids sugar.


Lots of temples here in Bangkok.


Hahaha. Halfway through breakfast, an attendant came by asking if we needed anything. Eh?? We said that we were ok, then he clicked off the call button. Haha. We had pushed the call button last night because we wanted our beds made early, but they never came. Finally they came to answer our call…12 hours later.


Bangkok on one side, and Bang Sue on the other side. Hah.


Train is running just a little late, but not too bad.


Tired.


The slums next to the rail tracks.


A slum restaurant, cool.


We’ve arrived.


You shall be named Thomas.


Didn’t expect to see a Dunkin Donuts here.

We came out of the station, and as expected, we were swarmed with touts asking if we needed a taxi. All the taxis are lined up literally right in front of us, but people still swarmed us anyway trying to scam us into more expensive taxis, etc. Anyhow, we walked into the line of waiting taxis and got into the first one in line.


The taxis here use natural gas.


Fare starts at 35 baht, about $1.


Here! If I remembered correctly, our taxi ride here was under 100baht, so it was under $3 and took maybe 15 minutes. Taxis are really cheap here in Bangkok.


What the street looks like in front of our hotel.


What happened in 2012?!?! Anyhow, we checked in…but we didn’t. Our room wasn’t ready yet since it’s only 7:30am. Shit, we are tired and we feel disgusting from not showing last night. Everything feels grimy. Ugh.


Our room will be ready in a couple of hours, so we had no choice but to head out and explore a little around the hotel. We booked a hotel kind of out of the city center of Bangkok because they’ve been having protests here. Well, the protests have died down, but we still got the hotel a little farther out…there’s basically nothing that caters to tourists here. Could be a good thing, and could be a bad thing I guess.


Fried dough for breakfast, they also have this in Taiwan.


Nearby is a local market, or what Americans would call Farmers Market. Here, it’s just market.


I believe these are lottery tickets.


OHHH, YUM!!!! I was hungry, but I couldn’t bring myself to eat something unknown so soon into getting here. I plan on coming back though.


Lots of stalls selling their food.


Fresh seafood, makes sense, we are close to the ocean.


Ah, unrefrigerated meat.


Those catfish are still alive…but not for long.


Beautiful.


Eggs. I guess you can’t break the eggs this way. I love how all the yolk naturally arrange themselves into this pattern.


We are going to eat you while in Bangkok.


This is a little scary…


Durian. They smell bad.


A giant traffic circle photo taken from atop a pedestrian overpass.


The early morning Bangkok traffic is starting to pick up.


Fried chicken!!!


This station is no longer used.


We got tired of walking around, so found a coffee shop nearby our hotel to chill out. This is literally the only shop around our hotel that has AC.


Yes please. It’s early in the morning, and it’s so hot already. I think Bangkok feels even hotter than Chiang Mai. It feels more humid here.


Portrait series.


Used this time to write out some postcards. If you didn’t receive one, then we don’t like you.


Super strong coffee. It made me all jittery.


Finally, got into our room!!! This is what $37 a night gets you a little bit outside of city center in Bangkok.


Got a room facing the back of the hotel, so it’s nice and quiet.


No durians allowed inside due to smell.

At first our internet was going REALLY SLOW. Shit. We asked the front desk, and finally they put in a password for us to use their business center’s wifi which is plenty fast. Solved that issue.


Not durian, but dried mangoes. Delicious.

We are exhausted from the train ride, and from the heat. We stayed inside the hotel until early afternoon. Time to go out and do something.


The stairs leading up to the BTS station, elevated trains.


It’s about a 10 minutes walk for us to get to the BTS station from our hotel. This walk is gonna suck later on when we are even more tired than now. At least it’s shaded.


Got our single way fare, paid by distance traveled.


The AC feels AMAZING in here. It’s so hot here in Bangkok.


At this hour there are so many more female riders than male riders.


Lumphini Park, this is where the protesters have retreated to inside Bangkok. While we were booking our trip, the protesters had shut down a good amount of central Bangkok and stalled traffic to a halt. It has also gotten violent at times and with some people getting shot. It has since lost steam and only smaller protests are called from time to time.


The tents of the protestors.


It’s so fucking hot here in Bangkok, I wouldn’t want to be staying in one of those tents. Must be hellish. Seriously, the heat here in insane, and I am used to Texas heat.


There’s money here in Bangkok. Unlike Chiang Mai, where I saw no luxury cars, I see plenty here in Bangkok.


Our first stop is Jim Thompson House. For some reason, all the travel guides list this place. I tend to think it’ll just be ok, but we’ll see. We came here first because this area is where a lot of the past protests have happened, so we figured that we’ll come here first in case the protest gets underway again while we are here.


A short walk from the BTS station and down this small street.


No, this isn’t it.


Arrived.


Jim Thompson was an American born silk merchant who lived here in Thailand after WWII. His compound comprises of many traditional Thai houses interlinked together. He mysteriously disappeared in a jungle in Malaysia in the late 60s and is presumed dead.


Silk worm cocoons in boiling water with the silk threads joined into one.


Silk worms.


Architecturally, this place is pretty cool. Oh yeah, Jim Thompson is also a trained architect.


One of the presses used to dye silk fabric.


Little goat reminds me of my dog.

In order to see the main house, we had to join one of their included organized tours. It was in English and everything here is super well organized. In fact, this place runs like a well oiled machine unlike most other tourist attractions here in Thailand. There were no photos allowed inside the house though, poop.


Moss!


The only photo we were allowed was from the courtyard into the living room of the main house. The rest of the house looks more or less like this. Nothing too out of ordinary.

So, again, why is Jim Thompson house such a popular tourist destination here in Bangkok? I suspect it’s because it’s easy for people to visit here. There are tours in English and other languages. There are no touts here, it’s peaceful. It actually doesn’t quite feel like Thailand it’s so calm here compared to the rest of the country. But just because they pamper you as a Western tourist does not make the attraction one of the top ones in Bangkok. Our vote is, meh!


We still haven’t had lunch yet, maybe here…we passed.


Still wearing the same clothes from yesterday. We thought about showering, but seriously, why bother. It’s so fucking hot and humid here.


We visited Jim Thompson house because we were wanting to visit the malls here in Bangkok. This area has a whole row of shopping malls next to one another. We came here to find a Swatch store. We got RL a Swatch Skin and the dial has since been etched by some sort of chemical stain that won’t go away. It’s under warranty, so hopefully they can either polish it for us, or give us another one.


I’ve never been in such a hectic mall before.


What would you like to drink? We’ve got Coke, coke, coke, coke and coke. Starving, so stopped to get some donuts.


The green one is green tea flavored. The chocolate one had Kit Kats on it.


No Swatch store inside the MBK mall, onward to another mall.


Found a Swatch store at another mall. They were able to polish away the chemical etching, using an metal polish actually. Hopefully the stain doesn’t come back.


Some food at the food court on the top floor of the mall. The foot courts here are on the top floors of the malls, whereas in Taiwan, they are typically in the basement floors.


RL’s food compared to the display sample. Doesn’t look quite as good.


MY food compared to the display, this one is a little closer. I found my shrimps hidden away in the middle of my dish.


So tired, so hungry, so thirsty. Mango smoothie!!


It’s been too long of a day, time to head back to our hotel.


Lots of people now, it’s traffic hour.


There’s a golf course in the middle of Bangkok. I wonder how much it costs to play here…


Our hotel is located close to the pedestrian overhead walkway in the distance. That’s a long walk from the BTS station.


Nothing here caters to tourists. I am hating it right now. I just want to be able to buy food and eat somewhere really close to our hotel later tonight. Ugh.


Well, at least the front desk sells Singha cheaply. This will tie me over for now.

Spent the afternoon napping and blogging. It’s time for dinner, gotta find something to eat. We asked the front desk, and they said that there’s a good Thai food place right across the street. Sounds promising. Anything close sounds promising right about now.


To get there, we had to cross one giant intersection.


It’s literally across the street.


Sorry for the blurry photo, I was really tired.


More beer. This spot is actually really awesome.


Fresh seafood counter.


Crab fried rice.


Grilled prawns! Love this place and the street side atmosphere. I feel much better about our hotel now. All I needed was one good solid close by restaurant, and this place definitely fits the bill. Time to go home and go to bed.

To be continued at Bangkok Day 2 Part 1.

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