Five Hours in Bangkok

It’s me and my day trips again!

I take a sip from a plastic cup of cha-yen I got for 35 baht. Tired from all the window-shopping and commuting, there is a window next to me that has just given me a view of a really awesome, calming scenery of the Thai sunset. Can this never end is all what’s in my head.

Too bad this all happened 294 days ago.

But I wish it was happening this very moment.

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4215 files, 63 folders. 16.0 GB. That is how much space pictures take up on this turtle netbook. I’ve already deleted half a thousand pictures last month, but the size can’t seem to go down even a gigabyte or two, maybe because even if I delete, I take new photos (and that takes up the space again), so it’s all useless. 3/4 of the pictures I take are useless (and I mean useless)—I saw a sink! If that isn’t useless, I don’t know what else is.

But I’m a pack rat. Even when it comes to pictures. I don’t like throwing away things. I don’t like having to get rid of files, especially when it consists of intangible things, like memories, as cheesy as it sounds. Deleting pictures for me is like erasing a memory off my head. But I had no choice… this laptop’s speed degrades every second of every day, so I had to go through all my files and delete what I thought I could delete.

If I have to delete, what better way is there to immortalize these happenings but by writing about them?

Which leads me to writing about a trip to the Land of the Smiles.

I actually wrote a few entries about it on this blog when I arrived home from the trip last year. For some unknown reason, I stopped. Untimely it may be to write about, I cannot seem to not write about a country that made me bring home nothing but happy memories. Really, there’s just something about Thailand.

We stayed in Pattaya the whole trip. Excluding the airport which is located in Bangkok, I only spent a good five hours in the capital, so I wasn’t really able to go around and go sight-seeing. It’s like how I go to Manila to go to Divisoria—I’m cooped up in a shopping district, away from the sights of Intramuros or Manila Bay, although I wish it wasn’t like that. That’s what happened in Bangkok.

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Before heading to Bangkok from Pattaya, we heard Mass at St. Nikolaus Catholic Church. It was celebrated in Thai, so I did not understand a thing, but I enjoyed, actually! It was a first for me. That was the time I had really immersed myself with the Thai language. I love how it sounds. I love how tonal it is.

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One of the many reasons why I love Thailand is that the people are so nationalistic. Every corner of the street has a flag. Saying that is an understatement. You walk, you see flags on the roads. You take a bus, you see flags on the highway.

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Our tummies were really satisfied at this place. I don’t know its name actually, but it might be the one on the signage on one of the pictures above. The food served here was really, really, really good—how can they not, when you see the locals themselves eat here?

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We walked to the Eastern Bus Terminal, located at Sukhumvit Road. If I still remember correctly, the ticket from Pattaya to Bangkok cost 120 baht. The trip took roughly two hours. Knowing we only had so little time to spend at Bangkok, the most sight-seeing I did was to look out of the window as the bus moved.

It amazes me that even if Thailand is not exactly the nearest country to the Philippines (even timezones are different), they have quite a lot in common— from how people look, to the weather (although the sun shone more directly on our skin there, or maybe it was just me, haha), to how the outside world looks like. It’s a whole new world, but it still feels like home.

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Shiny, neon, sparkly magenta taxis! How can you not love Thailand?!

Our first stop was JJ Mall located at the Chatuchak district. It reminded me of 168, Greenhills and V-Mall combined. Cheap finds—check!

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This picture sort of creeps me out even up to this day. As I took this snapshot, blink eye detected was written on the camera. This is a statue, by the way. Freaky… lol.

Our lunch was Swensen’s! I saw a lot of branches in Thailand. If I’m not mistaken, there are two branches here located at Eastwood and MoA. The menu here is good, but nothing beats the sticky rice there.

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Green rice! Would you just look at that… it’s amazing. We should make our own version. Suman, perhaps?

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The reason why we had ice cream for lunch was because Chatuchak Weekend Market was all about food, food, food. It was here where I bought peanuts, durian chips(!!!), and candied tamarind as pasalubong. And ate a lot. A lot of street food. Good street food. Chatuchak was such a happy place where you see locals and tourists all around the place. One of my goals this summer is to go food-tripping and just eat, eat, eat without the feeling of regret.

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The market isn’t all about stuffing your mouth with good food. They also sell clothes, household goods, appliances, and a ton of trinkets. Things here are all so affordable, and I regret not being able to buy anything besides food. A lot of things (if not all) in Thailand are cheap and I assure you that the feeling of regret in spending will never creep in you. Even Dairy Queen is cheaper here. It’s not the same case for McDonald’s though!

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What kept me hydrated the whole day. It may be not clearly seen on the photo, but it amazes me how every drink in Thailand is served with a straw. I don’t know if that’s something to be surprised about, but even what you buy in convenience stores comes with a straw!

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The day ended with a bus trip back to Pattaya, including a very sumptuous dinner at Took Lae Dee located at Foodland Supermarket. They serve really great food. I had my first taste of authentic pad thai, and what can I say… I fell in love!

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That was how my five hours in Bangkok was spent. The places I went to weren’t even half of all the must-see places in Bangkok, and even up to this day, I still don’t want to know what I missed. It’s been almost a year, but the happy days spent here are still as clear as memories. What a day trip. Five hours well spent!

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