Thanks for coming along on my newest adventure! I’m so excited to be spending a month exploring Thailand!
My 747 from Detroit to Seoul, unfortunately I spent the 13 hours downstairs, in cattle class
I slept through half of it, but was pleasantly surprised at the movie selection when I was awake, and the view wasn’t bad either:
First sunrise of the new year, over Siberia
It seemed endless, even from the plane
Even after spending 24 hours in transit, with a 12 hour time change, plus a hotel room with broken air conditioning overlooking (and overhearing) an elevated highway, I still had the energy for a long, busy day. In the morning, I took the ferry up the river to the Wat Po, home of the reclining Buddha, and the Grand Palace. At the entrance was this sign:
Who would put buddha on a dog bed anyway?!
The Golden Buddha himself, or at least his head
All 150 feet of him! (Except actually his feet, which are under renovation)
Every single surface is so incredibly detailed, and in his reflection, the entire place glows gold
Close up of one of his columns
Part of his pedestal
Wat Po courtyard
So glad I’m not in charge of the Windex!
Many buddhas of Wat Po
Gateway at Wat Po
After Wat Po I stopped to grab some breakfast. I considered some of the delicious fruit on offer:
But decided I needed some protein
Plus, with this little boy cooking, how could I resist?
Quail eggs served with soy sauce over shredded cabbage.
The Grand Palace might have been the most crowded place I’ve ever been. I’m talking worse than Rockefeller Center on Christmas Eve crowded. Lift you off your feet crowded. And it was 90+ degrees, in the blazing sun. It’s my own fault for going on a Saturday, but wow!
Elephant at the Grand Palace, Thai people rub their heads for good luck
More of the Grand Palace
Like how my the palace matches my borrowed skirt?
One of my favorite parts of the Grand Palace was the textile museum, which had a collection of the outfits worn by the Queen over the years, as well as information about traditional Thai silks and patterns. There was even a movie of the various lengths of silk being wrapped around a figure so you could see how they are worn. Besides the fabrics being intricate, the folds themselves are really complicated. Unfortunately no cameras were allowed except in this demonstration area:
A woman was hand weaving this silk shawl
Afterward the Grand Palace I went wandering…
A “cider” and condensed milk drink, with a really nice contrast between the two
A woman making a “rainbow” crepe. I’ve never seen one before, or a squeeze bottle with three openings…
You can buy almost anything on a stick
Weirdly, there are 7-11s everywhere, although they don’t carry the same stuff as ours at home…
Like fish flavored taro snacks inside, which are right next to the seaweed chips, neither of which I’ve ever seen at “Ghetto Sevs” 🙂
Noodles for days
Dried fish flavored with sesame, they’re actually pretty good!
I couldn’t figure out what these little yellow fruits being sold in the markets were until I stumbled onto an old man in an alley who was cleaning them. They’re baby pineapples, about the size of an apple.
There are cats everywhere. (And yet still a surprising number of rats!)
Requisite arty picture
Sunset over the Dawn Temple
Banana-leaf wrapped sweet sticky rice with banana and peanuts, delicious!
Color coordinated cash run. Even monks need money.
Flowers for sale in the flower market. Before
They’re bought for all sorts of reasons, many religious
The arrangements are really labor intensive
Boxes outside the market
I finally caught a cab back to my hotel, where I picked up my bags, and moved to a hostel where I checked into a women’s dorm.
That’s my bed, one of the 8 in the room
The hostel has a hip, modern industrial feel
There is a bar downstairs with outdoor seating, a laundry facility, and a “media room,” all for about $12 a night. After getting settled in, I headed to a seafood restaurant nearby for dinner. It was one of the first places I’d been all day that actually had a door.
I had fresh water prawns with glass noodles in a hot pot and they were so good I considered a second order
And, after a long hot day, a much needed beer to wash it all down
Tuk tuk outside of Grand Temple at night
(I actually walked home, but tuk tuks are just so cute!)