the porous city

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Welcome to the land of smiles, also home to the world's sleepiest security guards
Based on a secondhand recommendation, I moved from the super-populated backpacker ghetto near Khao San Road to a guesthouse in a sleepy neighborhood in the middle of Bangkok. Feeling sorta smug about cutting my lodging bill in half, to less than $7.
Met up with a couple of other tourists, a nurse from Spain and a Canadian expat living in Taiwan. The Canadian had been hit on by a teenaged monk earlier that day who'd told her he loved her and more or less lunged at her chest. The three of us hit up one of the seedy go-go bars everyone's supposed to visit, and argued our way out of the bullshit $33 per person cover charge they try to tack onto everyone's bill on their way out.
Today: well it's not over, but I spent an hour or two in Chinatown, easily the most overwhelming part of the trip so far. Between the stores and the stalls, the sidewalk was about one person wide. The whole population of Bangkok managed to squeeze through this corridor in two opposing streams. The overwhelming part though was the variety and intensity of aromas, sounds and sights coming from the different stalls. Then I glimpsed a bunch of Chinese lanterns hanging at the end of a passageway and ended up in a huge temple complex in the middle of the city, built by a Thai king in Chinese style, and all I could smell was incense.


last timestamped: 00:27:41 17-Feb-2008
in categories:Travel/Vagabond'08, Travel/KingdomofSiam

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