Tuesday, February 9th, 2016
We ate a hearty breakfast and I iced mine off with mango and sticky rice before we headed to the metro.
We were going to the Vietnam Embassy to get our visas. When we got off the metro, we started wandering in hopes of finding the embassy. A nice man asked us where we were headed and gave us some unpleasant news. Because of Chinese New Year, the Vietnamese Embassy was closed for 1 week, since a lot of Vietnamese citizens celebrate it. I suppose we would have to wait until we got to Cambodia to get one.
We got back on the metro and were hoping to get to “Erawan Shrine.” We’d walk passed it several times before we located it. I would realize much later that what I actually wanted was the “Erawan Museum” instead. As it turned out, this was one of the locations of the bombings from the year prior.
Fed up with our poor luck navigating and our Bangkok experience as a whole, we returned to the hotel to use the WiFi to book a room for our next stop in Pattaya. We wouldn’t be staying in Bangkok much longer.
Afterwards, we took a scenic ferry ride up the river to the Maharaj Pier so we could see the Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaew. After a super hot and sweaty walk around the complex, Trevor was informed he didn’t have the proper attire on for entry, something that neither of us remembered to prepare for. Trevor told me to go on ahead, and he’d wait outside. I bobbed and weaved through the crowds to get to the proper line. I was told that I first needed to get in line for a ticket, a line which snaked around the entire inside of the complex. I threw in the towel. It didn’t feel right leaving Trevor out in the sun for so long.
After I tracked him down outside, we fried in the sun as we made our way to the opposite side of the complex to check out Wat Pho. Once again, Trevor was denied entry and we only had exact change for one person to begin with, which was all they’d accept.
I’d go in to check out the reclining buddha and did a speedy tour of the larger-than-expected complex, not wanting to keep Trevor waiting too long. They provided free bottles of water near the exit, so I snagged an extra to give to him.
Back on the ferry we went and we’d make another stop, this time at Phra Athit Pier. We were going to check out the touristy Khao San Road which we never ended up stumbling upon the day prior. On our way, we passed by Phra Sumen Fort.
We browsed through all the vendor stalls to see what each one had to offer before going to “Number One Restaurant Vegetarian and Thai Food” for lunch. We drank our beers as we watched a table of French children playing poker with one another looking like old men.
We went back through all the vendors and I got yelled at for taking a picture of a t-shirt that I found funny. Trevor apologized and told the guy “She can’t read,” as he escorted me away. I honestly didn’t see the “No Pictures” sign until Trevor drug me away like a problem child.
This was a place with some great people watching potential! We took advantage and grabbed a couple beers while talking to some guys traveling from Saskatchewan, Canada who just got back from a motorbike Vietnam adventure. Behind us was a girl, drunk and passed out on top of her friends in front of a trough of beer. A guy dressed like a pirate walked by in front of us selling wooden snakes. Ladies in weird hats kept interrupting our conversation while trying to sell us bracelets with dirty phrases on them. We also witnessed a Willie Nelson look-a-like, a guy with dreadlocks down to his ankles, and vendors on foot trying to sell everything from scorpions on a stick to tasers.
The Canadians shared our lack of interest in Bangkok, and had to rush off to catch their bus. We decided to escape the madness as well, and returned to the pier to catch the ferry. Little did we know, other parts of Thailand can get much more touristy and obnoxious. Much, much more!
Jump Back to Part 15: A Racist Cabbie & The Asiatique Riverfront
Jump Ahead to Part 17: Prostitutes, Neons & Muay Thai
Start from the Beginning at Part 1: Mumbai to Chiang Mai