To the Islands!

Posted by lena on June 25th, 2007 filed in Thailand

Day 8 – taking it easy

Sunday we decided that after the excitement of the enormous market on Saturday we would take it easy to go see a movie.  Dedicating ourselves to take public transportation as much as possible, we made our way over to the river boats and after about 20 minutes of staring at the schedule and fees, bought a ticket for the orange line.  The orange line is not the slowest boat (thats  the white line – it stops at every port) but its the next slowest.  Our hotel is next to pier 13 and we needed to get off at pier 9 (its about a 1/2 hour walk). The boat was a blast.  It works much the same way as the buses.  If you don’t buy your ticket in advance, someone with a metal change container approaches you and asks for your money or a ticket.  Also, much like the buses, as soon as the boat is within jumping distance of the dock you get off – its rather exciting and makes me glad that I did all that balance work for drama.  From pier 9, we caught a bus and went to Siam Center.  Siam Center is this oasis of pure American culture in the midst of Thailand.  It is filled with stores like Starbucks and DKNY.  Everything is in English and costs a ton.  Adam and I went to see Fantastic 4 (what a mind numbing movie).  We bought our tickets and even picked out the seats we wanted – it was pretty neat.  After the movie, we ate lunch at this chain restaurant that was awful and expensive.  The people working in The Siam Center were much like the people working in American malls – impatient and disinterested.  They were annoyed by our lack of knowledge and ignored us most of the time (it took us almost 20 minutes to get menus).  Sick of this culture, we left and headed back to our hotel where we cooled off and explored Banglampho (the area we are staying). 

Day 9 – Monday

Because we liked the river boat so much on Sunday, we bought an all day pass for unlimited rides for 100 Baht each (about $3 each).  We too it all the way down to the Oriental Hotel – all the guide books say that you have to see it.  Apparently tons of famous people like Tom Cruise have stayed there.  It had a rather unimpressive exterior (especially compared to the other extravagant hotels in the area), but the inside was beautiful.  The room rates were not that bad (you could get a room for about $300 a night) and apparently they have one of the best restaurants in town – we looked at it but chose to eat somewhere that didn’t cost our entire trip savings.  From the Oriental Hotel, we hoped on the river boat and went to the Temple with the Golden Reclining Buddha.  It was really beautiful.  It looked much like the one in Auttuya, but it was covered in gold and it was inside an incredible temple with intricate mosaics on the outside.  According to my guide book, when the Burmese attacked in 1767, they covered the Buddha in plaster.  In the 1950, they noticed something shiny under a crack in the plaster only to discover that the entire statue was made out of solid gold.  Pretty impressive considering the size of it.  I got lots of pictures.  From the temple, we traveled to the other side of the river and found a wonderful market that we even cheaper than the ones we’d seen so far.  We ate lunch at a place where our server didn’t speak much English which was a very good thing: she brought us 3 dishes – that we didn’t really know we were getting – and they were all wonderful.  We headed back to our hotel to cool off and relax before dinner.  We ate at our hotel restaurant and watched American Dreamz. 

Day 11 – last day in Bangkok – Tuesday

Today is our last day in Bangkok.  We are catching a night bus tonight to take us to our island this evening at 7pm- we should be arriving around 10am tomorrow morning.  We have reservations at the Sand and Sea resort (fancy).  I don’t know how much Internet access I’m going to have on the island, but I will try to update my blog as much as possible.  Thank you to everyone who as written me and commented.  I love hearing from my friends and family when I am traveling.

3 Responses to “To the Islands!”

  1. mel Says:

    It sounds like you are having such fun. I wish I had come. I’ve been busy working both at the hospital and with clients. I have not been jumping from boats and eating delicious thi food. love you, Mom
    P.S. You would be proud of me. I managed to download my meditation tapes onto my new IPOD. It only took a two hour phone conversation with tech support in order to do that.

  2. Susie Says:

    Hello Honeymooners!

    It sounds like you’re having a blast. I can’t wait to see your pictures. The Reclining Buddha sounds fantastic. Just think of what you’ll be able to share with your students. Have you gotten to see any Thai theatrical or musical performances?

    I look forward to your next blog entry. Enjoy the resort.
    Take care of yourselves. Love to you both, S:-)mom

  3. mike Says:

    Hey guys,

    I’ve been quietly keeping up on your adventures. 🙂 Sounds like lots of excitement! Know that you wont be missing much here (supposed to rain the next couple of days). Stay safe!