Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Krabi
















Well, from what I saw it was beautiful. Kevin and Katie had a play date out to Hong island and took lots of pics so I will upload them when I get a chance.

It was difficult for me to feel so weird and sick and not be able to communicate with anyone that could help. I visited the nurse at the hotel twice and she just loaded me up with medicine that didn't even make sense. After the second morning of feeling horrible we made the decision to get an earlier flight back - so here we are in Hong Kong waiting to board our big bird to take us back to the states.

Last night in Bangkok
















Sunday night was our last night in Bangkok before heading to Krabi for what was suppose to be the rest of the week. On Sunday the big group went with Nat and James and headed to the Floating Market. Since I had done this last time and wasn't thrilled by the idea of going again since it was more of a tourist trap than something neat to see, Kevin and I opted out of this. We ended up just hanging around the area close to the hotel. We got pedicures, yes Kevin got one too. I also had mine done by a man-lady -- very exciting stuff. We ate lunch at this little place in Silom Village and did a little shopping. I ordered shrimp noodles with gravy thinking the gravy wasn't going to be a main component --oh but it was. It was hard to eat b/c we had watched that Dirty Jobs show on Discovery about the eel mucus (anyone?) and the gravy kinda looked like that. Soooooo...lunch was ok.
We really wanted to hang out with everyone since it was their last night, but we also wanted to go to a Thai boxing match and a Cabaret show. Our thinking was to go to the boxing, grab dinner, head to the cabaret show then meet up with everyone at Sky Bar later. We got the the boxing match a little late and only saw the last three matches. Katie and I really didn't think we would have wanted to see more than that, but it was really cool and I wish we could have seen more. Definitely a must if you go visit.
Next we headed to dinner. We found a place that had couches to sit on which was perfect for Sean and his leg. The food was good, but at the end I got a sudden sick feeling which stuck with me and is the reason why we are leaving early--but back to that night. So after dinner we went to the cabaret show where it was all lady boys that performed. Oh it was very interesting. Lots of makeup and little outfits. They all were lip-singing, which was funny because it was English....so it was fairly obvious that it was lip-singing. Overall a fun show, as long as you aren't trying to keep yourself from fainting/throwing up or wondering why your left arm has gone numb. Soooo we didn't make it to see the rest of the group. Kevin and I headed back to the Hotel and hoped that I would feel better in the morning. Pics to come later....

Street Dogs




There must be something said for the sassy street dogs of Thailand. I have seen not one but TWO of them dressed up lounging on the streets. I have pics of these two that I witnessed and as soon as I can get them on to my computer I will post them. Katie also saw some fancy street dogs too....oh Bangkok...what would Bob wear here?

Saturday, January 17, 2009

A Thai Wedding



















video





We left our hotel at 2:30 to get to the hotel in time for the traditional Thai and Chinese ceremonies that we were invited to attend. Nat started the festivities in a traditional Thai dress - which was beautiful! All the girls loved it and hope she wears it to the Dallas reception. Every thing was done in Thai but Nat's Aunt, her sister Beth and a few others were so nice and would come translate what was happening for all of us. Basically the first thing that was done was a engagement ceremony. There was some tapioca soup passed around to the audience which i think it suppose to bring good luck and fortune to the new couple. After this, the tea ceremony began. Everyone from Nats family was called up (couple at a time) and drank a cup tea with Nat and James in the front of the room. They gave the new couple money and Nat and James gave them a thank you gift. Nat's family was pretty large, so this went on for a little while. After this was completed Nat was taken away to go change into her Chinese wedding dress. This is where the interactive part came in - everyone that had a gold necklace was asked to open the necklace and hold it out to guard the door to the room where Nat was hiding. Basically you all line up in a row with the necklace open to block James from getting to her. The necklace serves as a rope. He has to go through each of the chains and pay each of us to get though. The last set of people (which were her sisters) are suppose to be the toughest and ask for the most money. Once James has paid us all he can open the door and get his bride. This part was really fun and they brough extra chains so we could all participate. After this the tea ceremony contiinued with James family. All of this ended around 4:30 so we had about two hours before the reception started so we all headed down to the lobby and had some drinks and chatted.





At 6:30 the reception started and it was so amazing! There were so many people and so much food!! Upon entering the ball room you stop and take a picture with the bride and groom, sign the guest book and head on in. Once you get inside you realize that there is a live feed on Nat and James (which Nat didn't even know!) So we could watch her the entire time! Inside there was beautiful flowers, amazing food and lots of drinks. Nat and James greeted people for about an hour and a half (I am not sure how they were able to smile that much) then a slideshow was played. After this they introduced the bride and groom (did a lot of talking in Thai), cut the cake and the wedding stuff was done. Sorry I am getting short here but my hour is almost up so I have to be quick!





The wedding was so much fun and I will have to recap again in person! Hopefull you can get a feel for what it was like with the video and pics posted!





Around Bangkok











The past few days we have been touring the city by ourselves for the most part. When we returned from Cambodia we had to make a couple trips to the suit place for Kevin - so we became extremely fond of the sky train. Kevin loves the train and will try to find any excuse to use it! So let me back up - on Thursday afternoon we returned to Bangkok. There was so much traffic heading from the airport to the hotel that it took us a very long time to finally get in. Once we arrived at the hotel we checked in and then headed out for one final suit fitting for Kevin. The suit actually fit him perfectly, but we didn't want to carry it around so we left it there to pick up on Friday. Kevin and I walked around and found a little Thai restaurant and a really yummy meal! We had soup, entrees and drinks all for $26! And it was really good. After this we took a tuk tuk to Katie and Sean's hotel to catch up with them. They are staying at Le Bua and on the 58th floor - its so crazy high! On Friday morning we woke up and headed back to the suite store. We had to be ready by 2pm for Nat's wedding so we didn't do much else this day ( I will make a separate post for her wedding next). On Saturday Kevin and I woke up at 7am and were ready to get moving. After breakfast we took the public boat down to the Grand Palace and completed our tourist duties. We saw the Emerald Buddha, tall Buddha, reclining Buddha and the Palace. Once we were done we headed back to the hotel so that Kevin could change into shorts and then headed out again to the weekend market. I really enjoyed the market, but Kevin wasn't loving it as much. He is already tired of shopping and we really haven't done any! I might have to get himand Sean to hang out and have Katie as my shopping partner. We returned home from the floating market around 5pm and got ready for dinner with the whole group and Nat's family. They took us to an amazing Thai food place that was on the river over-looking a new fancy bridge. Once we were stuffed we headed to the night market for a little more shopping (Kevin lasted for about 5 min with this) so we headed to a bar where everyone met up once they were done. Now its Sunday and our plans are to find a place to massages and doing a little more poking around the city. Tonight we are going out as a group to one of the Thai boxing matches and then to dinner! The big group heads back to the states tomorrow and our mini group heads to Krabi for the week....I can't wait for the beach!!

Sunday Morning




Whew! It's been a while - we have been pretty busy here in Bangkok. We have had a relaxing morning so far and are just coming in from breakfast - which is amazing here! The buffet is down by the river and they have anything you can imagine including 16 different juices, pastries, meats, omelet station and a wonderful cheese tray (one of my favs!). We are really enjoying this hotel even though we may not fit in quite well with the rest of the guests (who all seem to be older). We even have a butler here - we haven't really had a reason to call for him, but its pretty crazy! Here are some pics from the hotel.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Temples, Temples, Temples






































We started bright and early today - Mr. Neak knew the perfect timing to hit the four temples we wanted to see when they were least busy. We started out with a 30 min ride out to Bantery Srei. The ride was really cool because we got to see a lot of the different villages along the way. We were basically some of the first tourists there in the morning and it was so nice to be able to walk around and see everything quickly - and of course take some really cool pics. The temple itself is known for the red sandstone that was used to build it as well as the intricate carvings. On our drive back there were bus loads of tourists traveling up there - which is hard to believe because the temple itself isn't that large. It would have been miserable being there with a ton of people.

The next temple we went to was Angkor Wat - the most famous. It's HUGE. After touring here we took a break and ate at a little restaurant outside the temple. I found my favorite dish on the menu - flat noodles - and they were AMAZING. Once we were all filled up we headed to the next two temples. One of my favorites that we saw was the Bayon temple inside Angkor Thom. This temple is most famous for the 52 smiling heads. One of the cool things about this temple was the carvings on the walls of everyday life.
The last temple that we went to was Ta Phrom. This one was also really cool and it is located in the jungle. This was also the temple where Tomb Raider was filmed.
We really enjoyed seeing all the temples yesterday and today so now we are going to take a break and relax. It's 4:30 here, so we will head out for dinner somewhere later tonight. Tomorrow our plans are to stay around the hotel (a massage may be in the works) and head back to Bangkok around lunchtime.