Tuesday August 17th – Friday 20th
We had booked a place for five nights in Bangkok at the riverside condo which has some apartments that they lease out as holiday rentals. It was the first time we had chosen this type of accommodation and was pleasantly surprised. The value was really good and the location wasn’t too bad either. The view from the 23rd floor was brilliant and the place really was a home away from home. 141 square metres, 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom. The furniture and fittings were all first class. It was just what we needed to unwind from a hectic few weeks, heck from a hectic 12 months!
We checked in around 6pm and went out for some dinner on the street before Seerung went back to the apartment to gets the kids bathed and ready for bed. I went for a walk in the opposite direction to where we had eaten to pick up some essentials for the next day such as washing detergent, milk etc. An early night and a good sleep was had by all.
After breakfast we went in search of coffee and some shopping. Walked the 100m to the river and caught the free shuttle boat across to the Saphan Thaksin sky train station. The girls loved sky train and were reluctant to get off at Sala Daeng where we went immediately to the a restaurant called coffee society which was the business previously owned by John, the new owner of Peppers. Afterwards we spent the afternoon shopping for kids shoes and having a good look around Silom road before heading back to the apartment for a swim and another early night.
More shopping, this time at The Mall Thapra. Unfortunately I was suffering from hay fever again and it got worst during the day so I ended up back in bed for the afternoon/evening while Seerung took the kids out for more shopping and eating down at the Marriot on the river.
This day was a little busier as we had a few jobs we needed to do. First up was to go to the Australian Embassy and vote in the federal election. After that we went to the huge police compound in the middle of the city so that Seerung could organise a police clearance. She needs another one for when we get back to Australia so that we can proceed with her residency application. Every time you leave the country for more then 3 months you need to supply another one. After walking around in circles we eventually found the correct office. What proceeded was the usual bollocks that goes on with many police in Thailand. The policeman ‘helping’ us was belligerent and rude and kept changing his mind about what paperwork we needed. Eventually Seerung in full voice of people around us told him to get off his bum (he was sitting with his legs on the table reading a newspaper while ‘helping’ us and actually do some work in trying to help people. That he was just wanting some tea money from us which is why he was stalling for time and that it is people like him that make the country unable to function as well as it could. With that said she stormed out. It was pure gold!
This now means that when we are back in Australia we will need to attend a police station and get Seerung fingerprinted and send them off to Thailand to be verified. We have done this before and wasn’t too much of a hassle.
After that excitement we walked over to Siam and had lunch at Sizzler before spending the afternoon looking around the new (for us) Paragon Mall.
We got back to the apartment just in time to meet Seerungs close friend who came to visit. I stayed home with the kids and got them to bed while the two girls went out and ate the city out of house and home.
Thought we would take the day easy so spent the morning in the swimming pool and when it cooled down in the afternoon we took a boat ride up to Balamphoo. The kids loved the 30 minute boat ride through the city but unfortunately when we arrived it started raining. We holed up in a restaurant for a while until it stopped then did a little clothes shopping for Seerung. This included a very ugly incident when a shop owner tried to move me on from the font of his shop physically and ended up with him holding a metal bar above his head ready to break my nose with it. He had decided to rent out the footpath in front of his shop to someone selling clothes so while Seerung was buying something from this business I had to stand (no where else to go) in front of his empty shop for a total of 60 seconds. When he pushed me out with no warning yelling ‘go, go’ I obviously refused! Thank fully no blood was spilt and I reluctantly walked away from the mad man.
After dinner we got a call from Seerungs friend again who lives in the area so we decided to wait for her so she could share a taxi back to our place where she would spend the night. By this time it was raining again and we ended up having to change street position four times until we eventually found an empty taxi. A 2 hour ride home then followed due to the heavy traffic. This trip would normally take 30 minutes. So much for the relaxing afternoon!
We actually thought that we would end up booking longer then we did but we surprised ourselves by not being able to handle Bangkok. We have visited this amazing city dozens and dozens of times since we have been married. We lived here for 8 months, 6 years ago and Seerung lived here for 12 years before we even met but for the first time ever we just wanted to get out of the place. I guess things change when you have little kids. The traffic, the people, the heat and the pollution all wear you down so quickly.
As a result we didn’t rebook but made plans to hit the road again, this time to the coast at Hua Hin. Leaving tomorrow. To be continued.