I think deep down transportation has always been my favourite aspect of travelling. My earliest travel memories are of the looming noses of planes, little windows with atmospheric wonders, cars — a constant from home — rumbling along through alien landscapes and subway trains being spit out of tunnels. When I think of Bangkok, motorcycle taxies — the little worker-ants of the city — often surface in my memories. However, after exploring the National Museum of Royal Barges my imagination has been chewing on thoughts of parading down the rivers surrounded by the golden boats of the kingdom. Continue reading “National Museum of Royal Barges: Bangkok, Thailand”
Are you travelling to Thailand and unsure of what to visit and experience? Here’s a quick video to help you on your way! If you spot something you’d like to explore further just click on the image below to go right to the post! There are also many, MANY places included in this blog that I didn’t get a chance to squeeeeeze into the video, so be sure to mosey around a bit for more inspiration! Continue reading “Thailand Revisited!”
Hello all! This post is inspired by a question that once popped into my head. I was just sitting around, minding my own business when suddenly out of the blue I began to wonder what children around the world do with their loose baby teeth. Do they all put their teeth under their pillow like I grew up with? Does everyone have their own version of the tooth fairy? Is there a global tooth economy?
Trying to ignore my protesting, rubbery legs I kneeled before the Master and watched intently as he called over a young girl of about six or seven. She rushed to his side and he grasped her small hand, glanced up to make sure I was watching.
Then he bent the tips of her fingers backwards to touch her wrist. She didn’t flinch. I on the other hand was wiggling my own fingers in terror. Just a few moments earlier the Master had tried to bend my fingers to his will and they weren’t as flexible as we’d hoped.
So far my body just didn’t seem to be engineered for the contorting poses of the Thai masked performance called khon. My knees screamed from the kneeling, my body shook from the strain as I tried to hold the angles, I dipped hazardously as I tried to sway gracefully—it just wasn’t working out.
But there was one western foreigner among the Thais of that class who could hold his own. A Canadian who seemed to take the athletic demands of khon in stride and gracefully thundered through the steps. One whose energetic steps emitted the playfulness of the monkey he was supposed to be.
Gliding up to the first of the three large exhibition halls I lightly stepped off the escalator and walked to the edge of the floor. My fingers gripped the railing as I leaned out over the soup of noise simmering below. The floor fell away into a neat crater revealing five floors below and two above. The building seemed to be designed just to encase the empty gulf. Perhaps the architecture was an attempt to leave room for all the sizzling thoughts and ideas bubbling up from below.
It is a capsule. A cathedral. A bomb shelter and haven for modern Thai artists. Hungrily nabbing my mental spoon I spun away from the edge rubbing my hands in delight. It was time to gobble through another five-course meal of social commentary and artistry.
One of the first things I did when I studied abroad at Thammasat University was visit the Grand Palace, or Phra Boromma Maha Ratcha Wang, in Bangkok.
So why haven’t I written about it until now?
I just wasn’t that impressed.
They say history is written by the winner. That’s about the only thing we can say with conviction when it comes to tales of the past. Every side of an event experiences a different reality and every witness walks away with a different story. However, the victorious are anything but quiet and the losers tend to push the memory out of the collective conscience as quickly, and quietly, as possible.
“Ok guys, go over and stand in front of the ruin.”
“Perfect, hold it, hold iiiiit,” I drew out the final word as my friends shuffled into position before the remains of the ancient Kingdom of Ayutthaya.
“Now be happy conquerors.”
The three Burmese before me broke into beaming grins and waved behind them.
All I remember from the Sanam Chandra Palace was the flowers swaying in the slight breeze of the day, the roosters clucking about and the castle-like building—with its bridge drawing over the small river meandering through the neatly manicured and sharply-shaped gardens.