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Published: February 18th 2019
We spent our last two nights in Thailand in the city of Bangkok, resting after a long day of travel from Koh Phangan involving boats, buses, planes, and cars, in preparation for another full day travelling from Thailand to Indonesia. We have been to Bangkok many times before, to the point where we were getting a bit complacent about our visits to this quite amazing, diverse, culturally rich city. So we decided to change it up a bit, and switched hotels - a little upgrade from a tired hotel in the same neighborhood that we like.
Its really quite amazing how a little change can create such a shift in attitude.
We were inspired to venture out again, and quickly became absorbed in the Saturday night vibrancy of the Koa San Road area. There we experienced a variety of live music - from excellent jazz to a stunning classic rock cover band whose male lead sounded exactly like Janis Joplin. All of this was set against a background of merchants trying to entice the crowds of tourists to purchase bizarre items, ranging from hits of laughing gas to trays of chocolate covered cockroaches and six inch centipedes (not exaggerating),
“Me and My Friends”, says Stan
I was laughing so hard as Stan insisted I pose in front of this delightful display of witch dolls in the Joy Luck Club restaurant, for there were two older Australian women chastizing him for being so “not nice”. “This is what I have to live with!” said I 😂
right alongside the delicious pad thai and banana pancake stands. It was an intense stimulation of the senses, to say the least.
Our last evening in the city was more quiet. We came across a delightful restaurant called the Joy Luck Club, named after the novel. The restaurant decor was a complete anomaly of stuffed toys, dolls, witches, and handcrafted artifacts, along with several diaries displaying decades of handwritten client testimonials. All of this we enjoyed while eating authentic Asian food and listening to American chart music from the late 1950’s - like Wolverton Mountain and Heatbreak Hotel -which effectively transported me back to my childhood days. This obscure little hidden gem, that seats at most 20 guests, exemplifies the vast hidden treasures this city holds. We took in sunset city views after a swim in our rooftop pool, and later watched multitudes of dinner party boats cruising Bangkok’s Chao Pra River - each offering different flavours of music.
What a difference a shift in attitude makes. Just a tiny shift. Kind of like a large ocean liner. One little turn of the wheel ultimately changes its direction.
We thought we had had enough of Bangkok. Not
so. We have fallen in love all over again.
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