Thailand (ประเทศไทย)

Third time in Thailand -- January 2004

We crossed from Laos back into Thailand (third time's a charm).

Once back in Thailand we stayed in Sang Khom for four or five days and got back to a relaxed--but not quite so boring--attitude. There's really not all that much to do, so it's hard to explain exactly why it's so much better than Thakaek had been. It was somehow just more welcoming and pleasant. We had most of our lunches at the nearby market where people spoke just enough english to figure out what we wanted. (I'm still not quite sure what flavor some of the drinks were.) One day we rented bikes and went to a waterfall 15 km out of town. Another day we walked out of town the other direction just to see what was there. Other days we did next to nothing--just playing cards and reading the hotel's eclectic collection of golf, Beatles, and science books.

Getting more pork balls at the market Getting more funny gummy shakes

From there we headed back down to Bangkok (again!) to meet up with Angela's uncle. We also stocked up on a few warmer items of clothing to get ready for a detour from our original itinerary to meet up with a friend in Tokyo.

Angela with Uncle Gerard in Bangkok Korean-style dinner at the B*B*Q Palace Lumphini Park in the middle of Bangkok

November-December 2003

We came back to Thailand a second time.

In Bangkok we saw a bunch of Buddhas and the Grand Palace.

Golden Buddha (that's a LOT of gold) Biggest Buddha in Bangkok -- 40 meters high Detail from the Grand Palace Guards outside a temple in the Grand Palace Close up of Matt and a guard

We took a three day trek from Chiang Mai.

Elephants My view for two hours Angela with the 'little' elephant The kids of the village put on a little show Swimming in the [freezing cold] waterfall

We met up with Tom and Delphine and took a three day trek from Mai Seriang along the Thai-Burmese border.

Taking our first shortcut Adun preparing our dinner Local women dropped by to say hello Everyone loved the digital cameras Tom's first moment riding the elephant Plunging through the trees Tom has had enough of elephants Flattening out bamboo for a floor (while else everyone watches) Kids playing in the village Avoiding wet feet at all costs Manning a military outpost on the Thai-Burmese border

Back in Chiang Mai we took a local cooking course.

Fruits at the local market Yui explained what to do Then we did it Then we ate it

First trip to Thailand -- September 2003

The Thailand update hardly counts. We just stopped in for a couple of days between Singapore and China. We got to spend a couple of days with Angela's mom as well as aunt Virginia and uncle Peter. (Peter speaks Thai, which was much appreciated.)

We stayed in a four star hotel in Bangkok as part of our flight/tour package. The first morning we got a city tour where saw the floating market, a famous temple (I forget which, but it was more Cambodian style than Thai), and got to do a little shopping, of course.

Bronze Buddha Wot Erun Wot Erun Wot Erun Unidentified desserts

At the weekend market we picked up some new shoes to make up for the boots we sent home. Very cheap shoes (and inexpensive as well). After that we went down to Pattaya to stay in a friend's condo. The condo was great, but Pattaya was a bit boring. The definite highlight here: the fried bugs that Peter got for us to sample.

After that it was time to say goodbye to all family and strike out on our own again. This time in Red China.

View from the condo Fried bugs Lots of fried bugs Mmmm... bugs Tastes like chicken

Last modified: 10 February 2004