Day 4 on our adventure so far!

Bangkok was crazy. We got in to our hostel at 2am – thankfully they had amazing coffee. I think the lack of sleep and long day of travel (close to 24 hours) took a bit of a toll, and we were both a bit shell-shocked first stepping out in to the streets of Bangkok.

My dad sent us a New York Times article that morning by the Frugal Traveller called “When you’ve got those First-24-Hour-Blues” – I wouldn’t say we had the blues exactly, but Bangkok was not nearly as tourist-friendly as I was expecting (at least not where we were staying). The smells on the street, the traffic, the humidity, the language… a bit intimidating at first.

We got over that quickly, and managed to brave the public transportation system on our first day (“so brave”, a Japanese couple travelling told us on the bus. “We are on our 5th day!”), met some Scottish friends at our hostel, and found some dinner and beers. Beer solves everything.

Bangkok was HOT. As we were walking through the Grand Palace on our second day, boiling hot (women have to cover legs and arms), I joked with Camille, “at least we’re not racing in this weather!” Little did we know…

Our plan to catch the #3 bus from the skytrain to the Bangkok bus station turned to be a bit more of an adventure than we had hoped. I was also surprised at how little english was spoken in Bangkok- should have had the bus station name written in Thai by our hostel! 3 bus changes later, back and forth and back again, with contradicting gestures from the people on the bus, and we were at the bus station. 4 hours later and we were on the bus -one 12 hour sleeper bus later and here we are in Chiang Mai.

The flooding hadn’t hit Bangkok that we saw in our one and a half days there- but you could see the preparations everywhere. 7-11 was totally sold out of water, businesses were sealing up their entrances (photos pending with a faster internet connection), and the water transit systems shut down the first day we were there.

We were originally planning on heading to Siem Reap after Bangkok, but flooding there led us North. It’s lovely so far.

-Claudia

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