Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Hello Bangkok: Take Two

On the BTS

At Cabbages & Condoms- I never thought I'd be at a condom themed restaurant

At The Nest until we got sleepy

Love the look Joshua's giving

About 5% of Joshua's dinosaur collection

Lady Gaga inspired video art

At IceDEA, possibly the coolest ice-cream place on earth. A must visit!


Calypso Cabaret- super dramatic & over the top & awesome

Caption contest!

Yes, really, YOU'D be fooled.

Proof we were young and carefree

This is an Australian sugar glider. Apparently not endangered but still pretty confronting.

A frozen banana dipped in chocolate & coated nuts was always going to be awesome

I've said it before, and I'll say it again- I Love Bangkok. In sentence capitals no less. The BTS is amazing as always, processes for things are clear and stress free (you need to live in Vietnam to appreciate that) and everywhere I look there's girls looking so damn cool.

This time was a little different to the other times we've been, though the same in that it never feels like long enough.

We flew over for a couple of days to meet Ben and Erin, or who I like to call Berin (I often try to think of my & Johnny's celebrity name but it just never works), as well as hang out with the Terricani's and make sure the kids still knew who we were.  Baby Maddie was sick the whole time poor thing and the boys were crazy as always.  We cooked them pancakes and have decided here on it would be "our thing" so they have fond memories of us in case we're old and need them to carry things up stairs.

We did lots of cool things on this trip I'm putting down on the list of essential "to dos" if you're ever in Bangkok- Calypso Cabaret (SO good, over the top and doesn't take itself too seriously), the fish section of Chatuchak Markets (like an aquarium you'd pay to see, the pet section is a bit scary though) and a visit to the Bangkok Art and Culture Center (how did this ever escape my list before?).

So- on to how it was different. I realise that every time we're there, we're very very lucky in that we get to stay with Aimee and co in a very cool apartment right in Sukhumvit where it's all happening, are right on the BTS line, and have truckloads of helpful advice and recommendations. It's awesome and easy and means we've never had to battle the things other tourists have to go through.

With Ben and Erin in staying Chinatown it meant going off in uncharted non-BTS territory. Nothing bad happened really, except getting into a taxi and the driver not taking us to the club we wanted to go to (basically just ignored just) but took us to another one instead where he would get kick-backs. Wait, that does sound bad. Well it was bad, but in the moment with other people who aren't cynical and don't live in South-East Asia it wasn't. He told us that the club we wanted to go to would be closed at the 2am curfew time and this one wouldn't. We go in, pay lots of money for entry fee, it's really shit and loud and than TA DAA it gets shuts down at 2am. Not a surprise at all really.

So it just makes me appreciate that fact we're spoilt in Bangkok and never have to go through situations like that regularly. I still love the city but know it probably shares a lot of the things we hate about Vietnam. But I'm okay with rose coloured glasses for now. And if the opportunity comes up to move there I'm all in. As long as we're on the BTS.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

What Makes A Good Day?

1. Going to the gym

2. Wearing a supercute outfit (including a vintage wool skirt bought years ago and never worn before)

3. Going grocery shopping and the taxi driver takes you DIRECTLY there without ripping you off

4. Discovering where to buy supercute cupcake cups and almond meal from

5. Ticking off your shopping list efficently

6. Your friends recommendations being spot on for the best fruit & veges and getting amazing service

7. Not ever having to walk ages away down a dirt road for fruit & veges ever again

8. Getting a cab hailed for you and the taxi driver takes you DIRECTLY home without ripping you off

To celebrate, I think I shall bake.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Two Things Happened Today

Yes, yes they did.

I was riding my bike to the supermarket when this guy on his motorbike started following me. Like I'm sure any other person would I didn't properly realise this at the start, and when it became blatantly clear I ended up saying "WHAT DO YOU WANT", to well, try and figure out what the hell he was doing. That and western culture means you kinds give someone the benefit of the doubt and time of day.

Then he didn't go away, then he kept talking to me and saying 'dep' which means beautiful and THEN doing this weird tongue thing and saying "hotel".

DO I LOOK LIKE A PROSTITUTE? The pink bike with flowers and a polka dot dress say no.

I considered stopping near a policeman to try and get them to shoo him away, but realised this is a flawed plan as they wouldn't actually care and may also be on his side.

I stopped and called Tabitha who I was hoping would tell me it had happened to her and it was normal. It's not.

He went away and when I breathed a sigh of relief he was back. And kept following me. My asian-ness kicked in and I ignored him like I've never ignored anyone before. About 4 blocks later, once I had recalculated going to the supermarket and decided to go straight to my crowded, western, lunch venue instead, he went away.

So. Awkward. Weird. Creepy.

After I thought he'd gone the first time, I looked over to the side of the street and saw a mother holding her 2 year daughters legs up to pee. This, I've seen a thousand times and can possibly be deemed 'bearable'. But she didn't pee. She shit. She shit directly on the street. I saw it come out. On the side of the road. Do you think they put it in a nice little plastic bag disposed thoughfully of it? No. There is human shit on the streets of Vietnam folks.

On the upside, I bought cake tins today. Johnny is away in Cambodia for four days so I thought I'd also treat myself with this bag and dress too.

Next weekend we're in Bangkok for three days! What has everyone else been up to?