Wednesday 9 May 2012

Bangkok Thailand in Two Days.

I wasn't in the best shape to write, lack of sleep perhaps. I suffered from “post-holiday blues”. It was weird because we were away for just two days. After numerous attempts to stay up late so I could finish this blog, here's a bit of the unforgettable experience we had in what we called "The Quest in Bangkok, Thailand". ☺

Jhem and I left our workplace at exactly 6.00 pm. We were obviously confident enough that we'd make it to our 8.40 pm flight. However, we totally forgot that we were almost at the boundary of Singapore and Malaysia. The travel time going to the airport takes around two hours by train or almost an hour when taking a taxi. We lost our hope and prepared ourselves for the possibility of missing our flight. There was no taxi available in our area and it was already fifteen minutes past six. The good heart of our supervisor was such a blessing because he offered us a ride to the airport. Half panicked and half overjoyed, we made it just on time. Thinking about missing our flight caused an almost heart attack emotion and so I promised myself not to book a flight with the same timing as that again. Or at least leave our workplace earlier.

We arrived at our hotel an hour before midnight. We took some time to rest for a while, freshened up, and spent the rest of the mornight in Khao San Road Night Market. As lively as it can be, the place was like “Greenhills Shopping Centre and Malate” rolled into one. A mishmash of shops and bars in that particular street in Bangkok, which made it appealing to foreigners like us. For me it was like a breath of fresh air. It was long time ago since the last time I’ve been in a bar. It was like the first time that I’ve seen tipsy people and believe me, it was strange. I was scared of them! Honestly, the moment I stepped out of PH, I never had the chance to have fun in any bar in Singapore. After shopping and delighting our eyes with the "good views", we headed back to our hotel to get a few hours of sleep. Did I say the Tuktuk experience was really exciting too? It was madness!

The following day was scheduled for Ayuttaya with River Cruise Tour.

As expected, it was a “Buddha and Temple” hopping experience. I wasn’t so thrilled about that since I’ve seen a lot when I visited Phuket last year. It was just more fun that time because I was with the bestest buddies in the whole world. The excitement was actually more about the lunch cruise. There were seats reserved for us in the lower deck where we could enjoy that fine scene of Thailand. The excitement was suddenly gone when we discovered that there were almost no food left on the table at all. We were supposed to be indulging a “sumptuous meal” which we had paid in advance. The food trays on top of the buffet table seemed to be just a display. Rather than uttering our dismay, we just had what was left there and without any choice filled our stomachs in with those “left-over” fruit on the dessert table. Sailing for about almost two hours was boring and we felt like it was just a waste of time. We could’ve been doing something else like shopping or having a massage. Those were much better ideas than sitting there doing nothing. To kill our time, we decided to sit back, relax, and took some photos while cruising. We went back to our hotel right after that tour to rest our tired body for a while, and then the quest for the best massage place started. We found one in Khao San Road. For a total cost of 700 Baht (29 SGD), we pampered ourselves with Thai Massage, Sea Salt Body Scrub, Sauna, and Jacuzzi. That was definitely the cheapest I had since the day I fell in love with body massage.

We planned to visit a night market on our second night. Ronald’s friend recommended that place called Chatuchak. Unfortunately, it was closed that day. Without any idea where to go after that perfect body massage, we sought some advice from the hotel's receptionist. The young man who was standing at the hotel’s front door recommended Patpong Night Market. We took a cab going there and to our surprise,  the driver asked if we want to see a live show. I answered sarcastically, enough for him to notice that we were not comfortable talking about stuff like  that. We were really surprised when we got there. We never thought that Patpong is a Red Light District in Bangkok! It was like a sex industry, which mainly caters foreigners, and a night market rolled into one. Out of curiosity, we wanted to walk along that street full of banners bragging about "fresh beach boys" and "hot males". Just before our first attempt, a middle-aged man approached and asked us if we want to watch some live shows (again). He even had a card (which looked like a food menu) with a list of all the shows that they offer. I didn't have a chance to read what was written there but Jhem did. She was shocked because the man was offering a pu**y show. He then asked if we are "lady boys" looking for some fun. We felt uncomfortable so we immediately left the area.

Walking around the other side of the red light district, there were again a lot of people who approached and asked us if we want to watch a "ping pong show". We didn't have any idea what that “ping pong show” was all about so we just ignored them. In that particular street which looked like a mini Divisoria full of “Class A” items being sold, there were also a lot of “go go bars” which were open for pre-viewing! The sexy ladies dancing in their two-piece were like items being sold too! Again out of curiosity and since they were open for pre-viewing to anyone who come across that area, we did our shopping while spying, trying to sneak to see what was happening inside those bars. But every time we tried, someone suddenly came out of nowhere to offer again those "weird" shows. We decided to leave and researched online about what that "ping pong show" was all about. It was indeed surprising!

After that experience in Patpong, we then headed off to Khao San Road Night Market (again). The items being sold in Khao San were better than those in Patpong. But shopping wasn’t actually the main reason why we went back to Khao San. Aside from the super duper many "gwapos" scattered everywhere, we wanted to try those tempting street food lined up – Pad Thai, Kebab, and Thai bbq to name a few. How could I ever forget that green mango Ronald bought too? It tasted good because of the additional flavor from the vendor’s bare hands! Again, after treating our eyes with the very good views and eating those street food gluttonously, we hired a Tuktuk going back to our hotel.

The following morning was the Grand Palace Tour which was supposed to start at 8.00 am. We had sufficient time to avail the free breakfast at the hotel. That’s the coziest budget hotel I’ve ever been so far. The friendly staff, good food and pleasant ambience – that was perfect. It was just bad that due to our limited time, we didn’t get the chance to visit the pool area located at the 5th floor of the building. But as what Ronald told us, we’ll get there again soon. After the Grand Palace tour, we had a city tour (which was not included in the tour that we booked, so that was for free! Yay!). Our flight going back to Singapore was scheduled at 4.40 pm and the tour ended at around 12.30 pm. We dropped by MBK Centre (a famous and the most visited shopping center in Bangkok, as what they told). There we had our lunch, tried the famous Papaya Salad (which I also tried when I went to Phuket), and my all time favorite Beef noodle and Thai Chai Tea. After roaming inside the mall for almost an hour, time to get back to our hotel to prepare for check out.

While packing my things up, I felt the eagerness to stay though we all knew it was impossible. I did enjoy the whole experience. We met new friends and discovered a lot about Thailand’s history. My idea about the sex industry in Thailand was broadened too. To be honest, I pity those “ladies” dancing in their sexiest to attract customers - that’s how they make a living. The first time we were offered to see those live shows, I thought it was gross. Yeah it is, for someone like us who can make a living decently on our own because our parents provided us good education and all. But for the less fortunate ones who are willing to do everything to earn just a little, I was a bit guilty for judging and thinking that they were just dirty sluts when in fact, I didn’t even know any of their stories.  Being a lady, I felt disrespected when I saw those expats feasting eyes on those sexy ladies dancing almost naked. Maybe because (again) of my traditional upbringing. Given a chance, I’ll definitely go back to Thailand not because I terribly want to shop, but because I felt like there are still a lot of things to discover in that beautiful country. I’ve been hopping from one country to another though not very usual since 2010, and that was one of the best trips I've had. I will be back Thailand, see you soon!

Photo Memories Here ♥ and our lovely hotel here!

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