Bangkok's Not Bad

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November 28th 2003
Published: November 28th 2003
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After two nights in Ko Pa-Ngan with a mixture of torrential rain, homesickness and overwhelming depression, I had decided to move on. I was fearing my necessary visit to Bangkok as I had heard that it was busier, dirtier and smellier than KL. It was, yet for some reason I really liked it there. Whether travel had hardened me, or whether Bangkok just has a great atmosphere I do not know.

Walking down Khao San Road during the day was pretty interesting, but at night when the traffic is closed off it is an amazing sight. The street is filled with backpackers and travellers walking up and down, passing jugglers, street vendors, hawker and endless lights from the signs of bars and hostels - it has to be seen. Here is where westerners are a majority and many unexpectedly meet those that they had travelled with weeks, months or even years before. I also met some great people in Bangkok, and on one day spent the day searching for pancakes and fruit shakes with two crazy Germans I had met that morning, before moving onto the Chang Beer at dusk (around six).

Bangkok also has the Tuk-Tuks. These motorized three wheeled cars are everywhaere, spewing out thick black exhaust fumes, while their drivers take you anywhere but where you want to go in order to get vouchers from shops. The one Tuk-Tuk I used insisted that he took me to a suit shop. After the third time I insisted I had no use for a suit, and a treble in the price he finally took me where I wanted to go - he had already took me to a travel agent rather than the train station, and caused me to walk there, so I wasn't doing him any favours. I was lucky and had read of this happening. One guy I met had spent the entire day going round suit shops, jewellery shops and shop after shop after shop. This coupled with the fact that every time you passed a driver he would shout across the street "You wan' Tuk-Tuk", caused me to eventually blank every one. Bloody Tuk-Tuks!!!


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