Friday, March 28, 2014

Bangkok by day, I could take it or leave it

Oooh weeeee….this was my lucky day!  I have been waiting for this week for ages!  Summer, Liv and Kelley are joining me on my adventure!  They were nice enough to plan a 2 week Thailand vacation to coincide with my travels.

Emily, Kelley, Liv and Summer together again!
The girls and I met at the airport.  They are not hard to find since Summer looks like a giraffe/unicorn hybrid amongst all of the tiny, dark Thai people.  She is 6 foot tall (giraffe) with white blonde hair and super pale skin (unicorn).  Hello ladies!

It was exciting to watch someone experience all of their “Asia firsts”.  First tuk tuk ride, first bug cart, first street food etc.  I know how excited I was, so it was fun to see how excited they were.

First Tuk-Tuk ride!

Freshest coconut milk possible
First Bug Cart!
We did 3 nights in Bangkok, which is a lot.  I'm actually not a huge fan of Bangkok.  Hollywood has glamorized it as an exciting dirty Vegas and I guess it is, but it is also a congested, dirty city that is in the middle of conflict and carelessness right now.  I didn't really care for Bangkok and will probably just use it as a transition/layover point going forward. The only thing that salvaged my time in this city were Summer, Kelley and Liv.

We spent the majority of the time shopping the various street stalls of Koh San Road for “unique” treasure of Thailand, that happen to be at every 4th stall along the way.

We ate green mangos with chili powder, mango sticky rice, fritters and baby Thai tacos on the street and eventually progressed to chicken skewers, pancakes, noodle soup and kebabs.  Everyone developed their own obsessions on this trip….


Summer had mango sticky rice 2-3 times a day and was obsessed with the morning fritters in Bangkok.  Toward the beginning, she had an Ali Baba style harem pant obsession, but it waned after a week.

Mango Sticky Rice = Mango, rice, condensed milk

Harem Pant obsession… Pair #1
Harem Pant Obsession Pair #2
Kelley was obsessed with shopping for everything, it didn’t matter what. She bought so many souvenirs! She is sure to be the most loved person upon her return because she may have bought souvenirs for everyone that she has ever met.

Shopping with the Long Neck tribe

Liv was obsessed with watches and swimsuits.  I think she bought 3-5 of each. (including one America swimsuit that she bought for me. Thanks! I love it!)

Swimsuit obsession #1

Swimsuit obsession #2, #3
Obsession benefactor = ME!  Thanks, Liv!
I was obsessed with trying to stay within budget without looking like a cheap, whiny bitch….and making sure I kept up my ghetto fabulous nails.

We realized while we were trying to find our initial hotel, that it was in the heart of the conflict demonstration area.  It was 40 minutes or so from Koh San Road, so we decided to swap hotels the following night to something a little closer, the Diamond Hotel.

Our original hotel was super cute and the owners were very nice and helpful, but proximity to the demonstration and protesters’ conflict zone made the choice a little easier.


We visited the Grand Palace and bunch of Wats on Budha Day, which was kind of special.  It marks the day when the monks all go to the Wats to pray to Budha who supposedly achieved Nirvana on that day.  The Wats were crowded and so was the Grand Palace.

3 monkeys in a temple

The Grand Palace entryway was beautifully manicured

The details in every building were insane!

Summer and Em clowning around

Em and Summer getting our zen on

So much gold…everything was covered with glorious gold

Even the frescas on the walls had a hint of shimmery gold

My favorite part, however, was the textiles museum.  Queen Sirikit was voted the best-dressed woman in the world in 1965.  When she was touring the world, she wanted to represent Thailand, which had lost its identity in dress since adopting a more western style. So she worked with world-class designers to combine the traditional Cambodian prints with more western styles.  He outfits were brilliant and beautiful.  They were classic and modern, inspiring really.  The textile museum had a collection of about 100 dresses that were worn and talked about the fabrics and sashes and the meaning and events she wore each piece to.  There was even a video that illustrated how to cut each pattern and assemble it. I wish I had a copy of that video!

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