Thailand 2011 — Part 4 – Shopping in Bangkok

We stopped at an outdoor market to buy some food. My brother and I found a strong and consistent wifi signal and I made some free international calls home (thanks to Google Voice, PBXes, and Sipdroid — see the article I wrote). I sent my bank an email letting them know I was traveling and that my card needed to stay activated. Since we seem to go to this outdoor market regularly, I’ll be bringing my laptop next time.
My grandfather sat down at the table to eat with us. He handed me a bowl of sliced fruit, which I ate. My aunt walked by after we ate it, took a whiff, and said it was rotten. Oops. He grinned.
[Well played, trolldad.]
wpid-DSC01817-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgA narrow bottle of Coca Cola. This country is slowly embracing plastic, which is good in some ways, shitty in others. Coke seems to taste purer and cleaner from a glass bottle.

wpid-DSC01818-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgFinishing up Bob Lutz’s book “Guts”. I have the Kindle version.


7 June 2011

wpid-DSC01819-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgMom decided to make macaroni and cheese, which was quite good. The problem is, after not consuming dairy for so long, my digestive system responded poorly to it.

wpid-DSC01820-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgMom brought back some noodles for lunch. It was hot out and the kitchen/dining area doesnt have AC, so I brought the bowl back to my room. Eating hot soup in a hot climate makes no sense to me.

wpid-DSC01821-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgMirinda, pineapple flavor

wpid-DSC01825-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgA lizard decided to hang out.


8 June 2011

wpid-DSC01826-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThe “Town Car” arrived. Heading to Bangkok today

wpid-DSC01827-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgRoom for 15 people, or a dozen Americans

wpid-DSC01828-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgBreakfast. Blech.

wpid-DSC01829-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgwpid-DSC01830-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgWent to a Jiffy gas station to buy some snacks

wpid-DSC01832-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThe sandwiches here lack content. You get bread and a meager helping of meat and cheese. Those brightly colored rolls on the lower shelf are cakes made to look like sushi. Cute.

It was food, and it got the job done for less than a dollar. An equivalent gas station sandwich in the US is inexplicably $2.80 or more.

wpid-DSC01834-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgDelicious melon flavored yogurt drink

wpid-DSC01835-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThe smaller siblings

wpid-DSC01837-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgHELLO KITTY SHIT IS EVERYWHERE.

wpid-DSC01839-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgA Chevy Optra. It had Nismo stickers on the front, lol

wpid-DSC01840-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThe driver had some planes on the dashboard

wpid-DSC01841-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThe Indian part of Bangkok

wpid-DSC01842-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThe womenfolk (my mom, aunts, and grandmother) went clothes shopping, so I took a nap.

wpid-DSC01843-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgParking here was illegal, and the driver was ticketed for it.

wpid-DSC01844-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThis guy’s political signs are all over town. He’s very expressive.

wpid-DSC01846-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgA BMW 730Li in the worst color possible

Pwpid-DSC01847-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgolice lights for sale.

wpid-DSC01848-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgwpid-DSC01852-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgAt the police station paying the parking fine. The impound lot was packed.

wpid-DSC01853-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThe site of some recent protests of some sort.

wpid-DSC01854-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgIt basically says, “Dont let animals get elected”

wpid-DSC01856-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThis guy loves his lubricant spray

wpid-DSC01864-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThe railroad crossing lights come on ten minutes in advance of the train’s arrival. It was a bit annoying.

wpid-DSC01867-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgSome buildings

wpid-DSC01868-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgToll booths every 15 or so miles, 25 baht or just under a dollar for 4-wheel vehicles

wpid-DSC01869-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThe old Bangkok airport

wpid-DSC01870-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgMore tolls

wpid-DSC01873-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgArrived at the mall

wpid-DSC01872-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgRobinson, the green sign on the right, carries products similar to Dillards, Macy’s, and the former Famous Barr.

wpid-DSC01875-2011-08-6-13-03.jpg1937 Lynx Sprite

wpid-DSC01876-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgWent to a thai food buffet at the mall. It was mediocre.

wpid-DSC01883-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgWent shopping for Nice Pants (TM) and Nice Shirts

wpid-DSC01884-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgI was tempted to buy white leather sandals. My brother got a new shirt, some khakis, and some dress shoes. I cant figure out why so many pants were tall. Thai people are not tall. Fortunately, tailoring is free! You buy your pants, get them measured, and they adjust them on the spot at no cost at all.

wpid-DSC01885-2011-08-6-13-03.jpg“Kansas City” lol

wpid-DSC01886-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgWicker baskets and such. I think Brown Farm is where Jesdas are made

wpid-DSC01887-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgDouchey Apple-type store

wpid-DSC01888-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgFrunway or F Runway? Either way, it makes no sense

wpid-DSC01889-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgCalculator watches

wpid-DSC01890-2011-08-6-13-03.jpglol, take your kid in to have it shined

wpid-DSC01892-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThe fifth floor of the mall is dedicated to games, computer parts, and TONS of pirated movies and software. There was a crowd around the LCD screens watching bootlegged films

wpid-DSC01894-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgNice looking mall

wpid-DSC01895-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgwpid-DSC01896-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgDelicious ice cream. You could really taste the vanilla. People were ordering them with honeydew and cantelope on top with a heavy squirt of coconut syrup. I think the ice cream is fattening enough on its own.

wpid-DSC01899-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgwpid-DSC01898-2011-08-6-13-03.jpglol, a foot. I think Mega Sale is a Best Buy type of store

I ended up not buying anything. Their pants maxed out at 36″. I need 38-40″. I suspected also that their idea of a men’s Large shirt was really a smallish Medium.

I was hoping I’d see some attractive women at the mall, but they were overwhelmingly bland.

9 June 2011

wpid-DSC01901-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgWent out for lunch with my aunt, brother, brother, and sister

wpid-DSC01902-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgShe decided to take us on an alternate route on an even narrower dirt road

wpid-DSC01904-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgNoodles, my hat. The food here is quite good, especially for 60 cents, but I suspect its been making me sick.

wpid-DSC01905-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgLet my brother play Angry Birds to make him stop running around

wpid-DSC01908-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgMy cousin got a Gameboy Advance from Bangkok. Whats awesome is that they preload the system with four dozen pirated games so you dont even need to use the cartridge.

wpid-DSC01910-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgBecause of the sausage fingers, I thought I took this picture of my hand and wondered why I took it. Then I noticed the shorts. One of my cousins apparently took it.

wpid-DSC01912-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgSome guy campaigning for public office


10 June 2011

wpid-DSC01913-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgWent out for lunch with my uncle

wpid-DSC01914-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgwpid-DSC01915-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgRode around in the “rear passenger compartment”

wpid-DSC01917-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgFauxhawk, 55mph

wpid-DSC01918-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgM-150 energy drink and an orange Fanta for me

wpid-DSC01919-2011-08-6-13-03.jpglol, “Dang Beauty”. “Dang” means “Red”. lol

wpid-DSC01921-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgA dog taking a nap on the shoulder of the road. I dont understand how there’s so little roadkill when so many dogs around here sleep on the pavement. I’ve never seen a dog on a leash, being walked, or being played with. They just kind of hang out.

wpid-DSC01922-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgMy uncle went to buy some bedding or something

wpid-DSC01923-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgWaiting on the shoulder where he parked

wpid-DSC01931-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgHeading home. Gets really swampy as we approach the house. This area used to be much denser with trees and tropical stuff, but much of it has been converted to agricultural use

wpid-DSC01932-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgSomeone else’s house, floodproof

wpid-DSC01933-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgJust noticed this poster outside the house. No way in hell would I drink that water. That kid is guzzling a glass of parasites

11 June 2011

wpid-DSC01936-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgMy stomach has been getting worse and worse. My asshole burns like a cross at a Klan rally. I went to Tesco/Lotus with my mom and uncle and bought some pro-bacterial yogurt drink, mango juice, croissants, and wheat bread. I’ll be sticking to clean packaged foods for a while.

wpid-DSC01934-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgAmericans like to bitch about “manufactured” and “processed” foods but you know what? After two weeks of pissing fire out my asshole, that processed packaged shit from the factory is a godsend — free of parasites with predictably acceptable quality. Bring on the preservatives. Bring on the xantham gum and sodium benzoateactylateaciteafate. Just spare me the live microscopic creatures.

wpid-DSC01935-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThey need to work out some kind of shopping cart return method. They just pile up out here.

wpid-DSC01937-2011-08-6-13-03.jpglol, compact pickups with cargo stacked to the sky

wpid-DSC01938-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgA little parade of some sort. Apparently its a celeration of some young fellow being ordained as a Buddhist monk.


After taking two Aleve and a long nap, I feel better. Tomorrow I’m going to the golf course to drink beer and enjoy some wifi.

12 June 2011

wpid-DSC01941-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgwpid-DSC01942-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgDriving range. I don’t play. I’ve tried, I’m terrible at it, and I don’t enjoy it.

wpid-DSC01943-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgOrdered boiled rice with chicken for breakfast. I havent seen AIM windows in days!

wpid-DSC01944-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgStarted raining hard.

wpid-DSC01945-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgwpid-DSC01946-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThis dog hangs out at the golf course. I assume he does his #1 and #2 out there too.


wpid-DSC01950-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgAfter a few hours of interwebs we walked over to the restaurant for lunch. We both ordered fried rice with chicken and cokes. This plate of food was $1.60!

wpid-DSC01951-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgGranted, the serving was small but people here eat less.

wpid-DSC01952-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgLater that day, we went to an outdoor market.

wpid-DSC01953-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgMy brother bought some ear buds, $10 USD

13 June 2011

The next day we drove 10 hours to Phuket. We hired a driver. They’re typically $20 a day plus fuel, food, lodging, etc.

wpid-DSC01954-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgMy cousin

wpid-DSC01955-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgMy sister

wpid-DSC01956-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgWe had the van, a 15-passenger Toyota Commuter, inspected before the long drive.

wpid-DSC01957-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThird-world Escalade

wpid-DSC01959-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgwpid-DSC01962-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgI bought juice and a hamburger at a convenience store.

wpid-DSC01960-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgMy brother got rice and eggs.

wpid-DSC01963-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgI also bought a tuna sandwich

wpid-DSC01966-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgwpid-DSC01968-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgLISA LISA AND THE CULT JAM!

wpid-DSC01971-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgSome salt farms

wpid-DSC01972-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgThe trees were looking more and more tropical as we got closer to the water

wpid-DSC01978-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgStopped at this rest area. The bathrooms were AWFUL.

wpid-DSC01981-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgStopped here for dinner. It was a large outdoor-style place with several food stands and tables. There was a roof but you were basically sitting outside.

wpid-DSC01983-2011-08-6-13-03.jpgSome pork, rice, and vegetables.

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