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The Stunning Adventures "Not all those who wander are lost." Tolkien

A Home away from Home in Bangkok

THAILAND | Friday, 5 October 2007 | Views [1055]

Our family in Thailand :)

Our family in Thailand :)

Well as many of you know, Bangkok is nothing new to us, but we will always have a soft-spot for this heart of Thailand.  Originally, Thailand had not been in our plans on this trip, but after our decision to forego Tibet due to the difficulties we foresaw in attaining yet another Chinese visa, permit issues, and attaining a train ticket, we opted for Myanmar. Thus we found ourselves, Bangkok bound.  We could enter Myanmar from Thailand, and Bangkok would be a good, cheap, convenient place to make onward travel decisions.  Only one day before we were set to depart on our overnight bus to Bangkok, we picked up a paper in a local coffee shop, and were saddened by the paper's headlines; protesters had flooded the streets in Rangoon (Yangon) for several days, and the military dictatorship was armed and ready. Within 24 hours of this information, we learned that the military was acting in an extreme and viloent way; people had been killed in the streets, and violence would continue to ensue.  Amidst such violent military suppression, it was evident that it was not our time to visit Myanmar.  We then decided to set our sights back to Tibet. We had to wait for over a week to arrange for yet another Chinese visa as the Chinese New Year's was the coming week and the embassy would be closed.  We would then have to wait another 4 days for the visa application to be processed.  We were supposed to re-unite with our friend Mat in Bangkok before he departed for Korea, as well as we wanted to visit our friends, Raymond and Cathy (the American couple who befriended us in the hospital, welcomed us their live-aboard experience, and spoiled us with delicious baked goods), and of course see the family we stayed with for a month while recovering from that incident that happened in December of 2004. Ok, since we had all these things to do, and had to wait around for our visas, we figured we might as well squeeze in a trip to Koh Tao and do a little diving, too. Due to our extensive stay(s) in Bangkok in the past, and including our agenda listed above, we didn't head out to see any of the usual tourist sights in the big city this time around. We mention this for you to keep in mind when looking at our photo album for Bangkok. Otherwise, many of you might think to yourselves, "Where's the giant Buddha?", "Where's the Palace?", etc...
In our first few days in Bangkok, Elizabeth had "misplaced" her bag one evening.  After a day of being depressed and hunting EVERYWHERE around our hotel, and annoying probably every Thai person with a kilometer diameter, we located it (complete with camera, every single photo we have taken on this trip recorded on DVD/CD, and an abbreviated journal of our travels).  A young artist who sold paintings of buddhas on the side of the road, had spoken to a number of crafts-people in the vicinity, and soon came across a young massage therapist who had spoken to the two of us the night before while we were looking at jewelry a friend of hers was selling.  She saw the bag, picked it up, and brought it back in hopes we would be looking for it. We were overwhelmed by how many people helped us, and how lucky we were to have her, Lak, return our bag.  We bought a painting from her friend, insisted Lak accept 1000 baht from us, and took her, along with Wass (an adorable little painter), and a number of their friends out to the disco in celebration.  It was a great night!
We enjoyed a fabulous dinner with Raymond and Cathy, where again, as always, we chatted away until the restaurant closed not realizing that 4 hours had slipped by.  This lack of time awareness was probably induced by the sugar rush brought on by Cathy's homemade carrot cake she brought to the restaurant for us.
We also had a wonderful time visiting our "Thai family".  We got to know them because of a wonderful woman named Suchada (a nurse who used to work with my sister at SCCA), immediately contacted her family in Bangkok when she heard the two of us were in the hospital. It is always so great to see all of them. We enjoyed some tasty Thai food with Mr. Cham and "Mom", then we were accompanied by all the rest. They had completed the renovations to the house which were amazing for us to see since we had been there before, and during renovations. When we were there in December 2004, the kitchen was mostly outdoors, and when we were there during December, it was amidst rennovations. We were quite curious to see the finished product which was incredible.  We hope to see them all again in the not-too-distant future.  They will always be very important to us.

So that's Bangkok in a nutshell; both pre-, and post-, Koh Tao.  For the two of us, it's a place that always feels a bit like home.    

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