Thailand Part 1: At the Airport + Pattaya

Sawasdee ka!

Oh, the Land of the Smiles! A week has passed since the day I first set foot on the beautiful Thailand. It was a trip from May 25-30 (technically it was only a four-day trip, not counting the airport and flight). Time flies so fast — it seems like I was just slurping a hot bowl of tom yum for dinner a few hours ago, still getting used to right-hand drive, and all what I see are Thai symbols and street signs.

The trip was more than amazing. Despite the long lines at the immigration, the (slight) delay of the flight and the sleepless nights among all, I would do everything all over again just to be in the country! I have so many stories and experiences that I would like to jot down and I don’t think I could squeeze them all in one blog post.

At NAIA (Ninoy Aquino International Airport) Terminal 3, still in the Philippines.

9:37 PM. Flight 5J 931, off we go!

Ohh, can you see the mist on the right?

I took a picture of a page from Smile, a magazine I found on the passenger’s seat. The stewardess then said, “Ma’am, pwede niyo ‘yan iuwi!”

Ah! Ganun ba? Lol.

See, I know nothing about traveling.

1:37 AM. Hello, Thailand!

Look — it clearly says “Cameras and camera phones prohibited.” I swear I did not see that! I was probably just too excited that I snapped around. No wonder I asked myself why I was the only person holding a camera. Seriously.

Oh, Maita, tsk!

Red says Manila; green, Hong Kong.

It was such a nice feeling to be in a place with people of so many different nationalities. While lining up at the immigration, I was discreetly staring at everyone (which I know was rude, hehe) and it amazed me how and why many tourists flock to the place. Now I know why. The weird thing I did was to try to take a glance at the passports tucked into their hands — oh, mukhang Pilipino… ay, ‘di pala! Haha.

Another great feeling was to hear them talk all in different languages. There were some I recognized, specifically Chinese. Although I wasn’t exactly “listening”, I heard a woman tell the girl she was with, ” 二十三!“ I wasn’t exactly sure, but then I immediately looked at them when I heard that. No matter how many times I think that I know no Chinese… hmm, amazing feeling. Hehe.

Mostly spent time browsing through the stalls of 7-Eleven during the wee hours and being amazed with everything I saw. Just some random drink I grabbed. The first thing I bought in Thailand — milk tea for 15 baht (₱21). Not bad! How did I know it was milk tea? Well, the English translation, of course!

We were looking for a place to stay (and sleep) but everything was just occupied by everyone. Think of one person occupying a six-row seat, treating it like a bed and snoring to death. The establishments nearby were closed too. We were supposed to stay at the airport the whole time since the first bus that left for Pattaya was at 8:00 AM. I seriously didn’t know how to kill time! Spent around two hours at Subway since it was the only place where I could have access to the internet (although there were so many connections recognized by the computer, everything had a password). Bought unlimited Coke for 50 baht, I think. I was able to go online and do the usual things such to check my e-mail and Facebook. I went on Skype and QQ too and I chatted with two of my closest friends. Fun — we even had a group chat. It was nice of them to have kept me company during that time. Not-so inside joke: Mika, anong pangalan mo? Laftrip! Haha. :p

First meal at 5:51 AM for 55 baht (roughly ₱77). Still no sleep.

Taking the window seat, as always. On the way to Pattaya.

After around two hours and a half from Suvarnabhumi Airport, we arrived at Pattaya, southeast of Bangkok. According to my Tita who stays there, Pattaya is more on the “provincial” side — think Batangas or Laguna.

So clean!

1:56 PM. Had lunch at a place (I don’t think it had a name, although all I remember was it being at the same establishment of Siam Commercial Bank!) The place was open-air and opposite Jomtien Beach. It was pretty relaxing to be eating at the sight of a beach right there.

As what everybody says, eat where the locals eat!

Ohhh, look, pink tissue. See how shallow the things I take a picture of get!

Of course, a post wouldn’t be complete without food — Thai food, that is!

I wrote all the romanized names of the food on my notebook… too lazy to get it (well, I don’t know which was which). Four words: everything was so good!

Mint leaves right there!

Rice. It was originally in a square shape. We were taught to roll it like a lumpia and eat it straight from the plastic. So cool.

I loved how everything was served with straws (yeah, even the milk tea I bought at 7-Eleven)!

Wee, happy tummy.

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