There are extra stops on this tour

Trip Start Feb 28, 2007
Trip End Mar 16, 2007

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Thursday, March 8, 2007

We're back tracking a bit here. It was nice in Bangkok at the Old Bangkok Inn to have a computer and internet in our room. We could keep up nicely with the blog. We are now about 30 miles out in the Andaman Sea on Ko Phi Phi. While not as rustic and remote as that may sound, it has not been as easy to keep up to date as you all know. Throw in some heat exhaustion and a bout or two of Montezuma's Revenge (is it still called that in Thailand, probably not) and we've taken it easy for a day or so.

So to recap the 8th, quite the whirlwind day through the temples of Bangkok. We'd booked a tour in the morning when we got in at the Bangkok Airport. Chinatown, the flower market, Golden Buddha, Reclining Buddha and Marble Temple. They left off the 3 stops at the end of the tour. Extra stops on the tour you say, well great that is a bonus. Not on this tour my friend. While we now know all that there is to know about the Thai Emerald, Ruby and Garment industries (as well as picking up a lesson in high pressure sales) we were ok with just going to the temples. Word of advice to those of you who would travel to Bangkok and Thailand, do all of your own travel arangements, don't buy the airport travel counter.

Now, with that being said, the temples were great. The Golden Buddha was just that. A 20 foot tall solid gold Buddha. The reclining Buddha was very large laying out over 100 feet long. there was one good point to having a guide, all of the temples were down alleys and nestled among buildings. With all the signs in Thai, a foreigner would have a hard time finding some of the most important sights in Bangkok.

For the afternoon we returned to the Old Bangkok Inn and met up with our afternoon guide, Am. She is a student guide who was a friend of the Inn owner's son. She runs her own tour agency with some friends. A very nice girl and she only took us to the sights we wanted to see, so that is good too. She took us to a lunch spot that locals go to in the middle of Bangkok. No english on the menu here. Very good food, but much spicier and different than say your typical order of Phad Thai at Racha. We'll have more on that later...

Next up was a river cruise. Am was a great guide taking us through the canals of Thonburi and seeing how traditional Thais live on the river and canals. From there it was to Wat Arun, the Temple of the Dawn. We had one of the most trecherous tuk tuk rides with our friend Am on this tour. We really thought that our tuk tuk was going to get crushed between two merging cars. There really are no rules of the road here. The tuk tuks and motorcycles just weave in and out of lanes and create their own lanes to move around. Am was even scared a bit on this one, so it had to be bad.

Back safe and sound at the Inn we headed out to Koh San Road for some shopping. Remember that spicy meal from earlier, well it sure made certain that I remembered it. We were back to the hotel in a hurry where I spent the remainder of that evening ill. Missed home a bit and wanted to be safe, so it was Pizza Hut delivery to the rescue. Why they gave us about 8 ketchup packets for what turned out to be a personal size pizza, we don't know. At least it wasn't spicy or covered in mayo. The latter seems to be a favorite over here.
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