Trip Start Aug 06, 2007
22Trip End Nov 17, 2007
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We arrived in Bangkok after a very short (3 hour) flight from Hong Kong, and again I am impressed at the flight, how on Thai Air the beautiful flight attendants dressed in their pretty purple traditional costume greet us with their bows and warm smiles, and not to mention the free unlimited booze and good food on the plane. Asian airlines really do kick some serious butt compared to some North American airlines out there.
Thailand and the world of Siamese people who are as beautiful as they are warm and friendly. Most places you go in Thailand you will find Buddhist monks walking around with their shaved heads and orange outfits. All Thai men must be a monk for at least one year
Tuk Tuks are the basic mode of transportation around the city and they normally consist of 3 wheel motorized vehicles which you sit under a roof on a bolted down seat behind the driver and there are no doors or windows so you get the fresh breeze and can see and hear everything around you. Aside from smelling like gas and getting a bit wet if it raining out, tuk tuks are actually very fun to ride in and I quite like them
The best past of Thailand so far is the Thai massage. Again, everywhere you turn there are parlors for cheap feet massages and Thai massages. There are probably more shops for this service in Thailand than anything else so far that I have seen. Nothing is off limits with the thai massage. It seems to be a mixture of yoga whereby the masseuse (or masseur) manipulates your body into some irregular and unusual positions, and then a massage where the masseuse uses her hands, elbows, knees and feet to massage your entire body - they stretch and massage parts of your body you would never know existed. Both of us have had a few of these massages so far, and they are dirt cheap (about $9 Canadian dollars for an hour) and wonderful. The massages are very different from what I have had before. The masseuse walks on her hands over your legs, she gets underneath your legs to properly use both hands and elbows on your legs. They massage your stomach and butt (which is not something I am used to and takes getting used to if one is squeamish or shy with these things) and most of the massage takes place while the masseuse is inside of your legs on on top of you. They use their feet to climb onto your legs and back and bum and press on pressure points to relieve tension
There is no shortage of young, pretty Thai girls hooking up with older (not as pretty) white men in the evenings all around...you can see it everywhere which I was really surprised at how "out in the open" it all is. Thailand has a lot of visible red light districts as well and no one is shy about it. One tuk tuk driver presented us with a card which was clearly for the red light district that caters to men, and it has some various activities that a person may want to engage in. The tuk tuk driver asked if we were interested and he could take us to go see the ladies. I will not go into too much detail here, but lets just say, the card did not leave too much to the imagination in terms of what specifically you could go and do/see. There are both red light districts with women (I should really say girls since most are under 20) and with boys (again, very young guys - all seemed under 20). We just walked through one block and that was enough. You got plenty to see just from walking on the streets. Kind of like Amsterdam I imagine except all Thai girls and boys we saw were very beautiful and very young.
One of the best experiences in Bangkok is the night we went to see some real Thai Kickboxing
A funny thing happened on our way ack from the airport from our Chiang Mai back to Bangkok. Most taxi's in Thailand have meters but the taxi drivers do not use them because they make way more money by setting a price with the customers than the meter would end up being because most tourists are stupid and don't know better - so we became quite careful of this. Anyway, for 50 baht you can pay for a permit to get a taxi that will use his meter. This may seem ridiculous to pay just to get them to use their meter, but in the end you will save a lot of money. Anyway, we paid our money and got an "English speaking" taxi - there are certain taxi's that put stickers on their windows to state that they speak English, which can often be quite helpful. After a few minutes being in the taxi on Bangkok's rather busy, very fast roads, we noticed that our taxi driver was driving abnormally slow
One of the best parts of Bangkok is the "tourist street" of Kao San Road. It is like being in the early 70's with all the hippy people with their dirty clothes and dreadlocks and huge massive backpacks, the outdoor café's with people drinking beer and smoking, the floating pad thai stands that offer the absolute best pad thai imaginable for 20 baht (less 50 cents). I could spend a whole week touring this one small road. It was great.
We both want to return to Thailand, but focus more on the beaches in the south part like Krabi, Phuket, Ko Samai or Ko Samet. Thailand is a great place to see a lot of beautiful sites, relax, get some cheap massages and spend very little money.