Wednesday, November 24, 2010

P.S. I'm going to Thailand! (and Laos and Vietnam)


View Thailand>Laos>Vietnam in a larger map

This is a map/itinerary of Bangkok I made today. This will help me not freak out when I get there and am alone for the first 36 hours.

My plan is to land at midnight on 12/3 and go straight to my guesthouse (possibly a place called New Merry V, but if there's no vacancy there are a couple of other places nearby). I'm told online that it costs 290 baht/night (about $10 USD), but I cannot book online. Also I can't tell if I have to share a room with anyone. I do not want to share a room with any smelly backpackers.

Then, I plan to start 12/4 by taking a boat down Chao Phraya to see some of the beautiful temples I've heard so much about like Wat Po, Wat Arun, and Grand Palace. I will of course eat some delicious foods somewhere along the way before I get too far down, possibly near the hospital with the forensics museum inside. I might go all the way down to the Ancient City at the mouth of the river. Then, I will take the Sky train over to the Jim Thompson house which is supposed to be, in Miley's words, pretty cool. Of course more eating in the afternoon and probably a stop at a Thai pub (like, Sawaree Terrace or Jae On near Jim Thompson). I'll walk around this touristy area and then maybe some shopping at Pratunam Market, dinner and more drinks. Or I could get really risque and check out the red light district, Patpong.

That sounds like a lot, right? Now that I think about it, this could easily spread over two days. I just happen to be in Bangkok on the King of Thailand's "birthday, when the streets around Ratchadamnoen and Sanam Luang come to life with music, food, vivid flowers and fireworks." So that gives me something to do on 12/5. My friend Vivan will be in town on 12/5, too, I hope, so she can help me knock back more foods and sights. And! I want to go to Bangkok Puppet Show at Aksra Theatre.

On 12/6 or 12/7, I will head up to meet Kristy in Norther Thailand, Chiang Mai. Her friend said we should try to stay at Julies guesthouse. We'll rent bike and drive up the hill to Doi Suthep. He said we should 'do the tiger experience,' but I'm not all too sure what that means. If we move on to Pai, he advised we stay at the Riverside Lodge Bungalows for like $4 bucks/night to have our own bungalow!
Go on the loop of waterfalls (with small slides), then the hot springs (buy some eggs to boil in the hottest one) and see the sunset at the temple on the hill. Go to Rasta bar across the river for great live music every night.
He also said we should go to the most amazing temple in the world is in Chang Rai..called the White Temple. It might be just me, but it seems like every temple is described as most amazing.

Then it's off to Laos! Aviva tells me it's the best and a little known secret of the cluster of countries over there. Maybe around 12/10 or 12/11--who's counting?!
in Luang Prabang, go to Phone Travel Services on the main drag and ask for the elephant trek with Dhi...should be about 33 bones since you know me and includes a trip to the caves. His friend Tom Perry is super cool too! They will show you around town too. Go to Utopia bar for food and evening entertainment..beautiful atmosphere
and great traveller scene...see the sunset on top of the hill...


I want to be in Vietnam by 12/13 at the latest. My flight back to Los Angeles is on 12/15 at midnight from Ho Chi Minh. Now you have all the details. Come with me!

Home Sweet Homo

I'm going back to Brooklyn tomorrow and will be spending the weekend packing up my apartment there to ship back to Los Angeles. I've been in LA for close to three months now without pretty much all of my stuff with the exception of one 50 pound suitcase of clothing that has surprisingly served me well. It's amazing how much you can live without, or I should say it is amazing to someone like me who is a crazy hoarder. But, I've caught myself fantasizing about a few things in particular that I have at home in Brooklyn that I could have really used over the period I've been in LA. For example, my rice cooker is a beautiful piece of machinery with automated precision that delivers some of the best rice you can cook in any standard kitchen. My dish rack saves space while drying plates, utensils, and all manner of storage containers. And, above all else, the coffeepot and bean grinder that have diligently reported for duty almost everyday for a great deal of my formative years. You, you I miss the most.