Thailand: diversity in Bangkok

Bangkok is a big city. I know people who hate it, people who love it. I can understand why, because it feels like it has everything and anything. Huge temples, big clean streets, small dirty streets, boozy backpacker streets, malls… I loved it. I can see myself living there. Every area has its own vibe and its own feel. You can commute by boat, sky train, tuktuk… It’s top notch modernity on one corner and total picturesque abeyance on the next one. It reminded me of New York in many ways. It sometimes looks like the hi tech blocks grew very fast, you can tell by the contrast of buildings than 10 years ago it was completely different, and than in a couple of years it might change again.

We did all the things we wanted to and couldn’t in Chiang Mai: went to the movies to see the last Star Wars, got a traditional thai massage in the Wat Pho temple (at sunset, and had the stunning empty  temple all to ourselves when we finished), took a muay thai class… And we walked, walked, walked. Our guesthouse was in Khao San road, where all the foreigners stay, drink and hang out, but we didn’t, it’s too sad of a show and we got kicked out of Brick bar anyway, because we had bottles of water in our bags, which is apparently as serious as carrying a gun). The further areas were much more fun! We skipped the royal palace and its unbelievable amounts of tourists to spend more time in Wat Pho, maybe my favorite temple so far. We did some window shopping in the malls area. We laughed every time there was a new photo of the king. We even had to stand up for the national anthem before Star Wars, with pictures of the king and… its dogs… in costumes… yes the dogs were wearing the costumes). Thai love their king, but they seem to pick the most random pictures of him to print them as giant posters and display them all over town: the king playing saxophone, the king talking into a talkie walkie, the king in the middle of a big bunch of rabbits… And because I know you won’t believe me, take a look at that. You have to imagine, those pictures are EVERYWHERE, from the restaurant lobby to food stall in the street, from the chic mall to the most humble house, to the markets and the road. And you can’t laugh at them because it would be terribly offensive…

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Just your average roundabout…

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A local market on the sides of one of the many canals of the city.

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Bangkok is full of interesting little streets and back alleys.

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Wat Pho

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On the bridge to go to Computer city… where I found a DDE case that saved all my photos!

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Affter our myai thai class.

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