Saturday, April 19, 2008

Wow... never been so sweaty on a meeting!

The humidity in Bangkok is like nothing I have ever experienced before in my life. Two to three minutes outside and you are just soaked from head to toe. The Temp is running about 95 degrees but the humidity is just overwhelming! The heat index is running about 105 degrees.

We hopped in a cab and wanted to go see the Grand Palace, however we found out that it wasn't going to be open till late afternoon and then only for a short period of time. So, the Taxi driver dropped us off near the river and we wondered around this area that was an outdoor produce and meat market. The smells were crazy and you had to have a strong stomach not to get sick. I took some photos and then talked to some people on the street about the area. They seemed over eager to help us figure out where we should go. I think it is mostly because they like to practice their English. So, we hopped in a Tuk Tuk, which is a motorcycle/taxi kinda thing, and next thing you know, you are ripping through the streets at lightning speed heading towards the sky train to head to the weekend market. The deal with the Tuk Tuk Driver was that he would basically wait for us anywhere we went, as long as we went to his sponsor and pretended to shop around for 10 minutes. His sponsor happened to be some big export company for precious stones. When you enter their building, they take you through the factory first. Which is just a room with about 30 workers in it and they are all making jewelry. Although, it is a racket... I am glad we went along with it because it was pretty cool to see the workers making jewelry.
On to the Sky Train... at the first station, there was a huge shopping mall which I was curious to see... not that I needed to buy anything, I just wanted to see how it was inside. So, after about 10 minutes of walking around in the sweet air conditioning, I had seen what I wanted to see, and back on the Sky Train up to Mo Chit to the weekend market.

The weekend market was so big, there is just no way to grasp what the size is because you are only able to see what is in front of you. I would guess the market is the size of 3 football fields.
So, after wondering around for a while fighting off the impending nausea because of the heat, humidity, and un-definable smells emanating from all sorts of things and places, We finally stopped at some outdoor restaurant for an ice cold Asahi beer. That's what we stopped for... what we got was a luke warm Asahi beer. That seems to be pretty average though. Nothing short of a 4 star hotel really gives you a cold beer.
It was nice to get out of the sun.. check to see if I was getting sunburned. All is good. I picked up a pair of asian lamps for about 8 bucks, and a north face waist bag for about 6 bucks cuz I was tired of having my jean pockets loaded down with everything. Then I saw an American guy standing at a shop with a Harley Davidson shirt on from Woodstock New York. I was excited to see that since I grew up about 20 minutes from that shop. I talked to him, and it turned out that he bought the shirt here in Bangkok. Too funny. He was from Lake Chelan Washington though, so we did have a bit in common to talk about. He is a school teacher and lives part time in Washington, and then part time in Bangkok. He avoids the winter I guess.
Then the temperature dropped considerably, and there were loud claps of thunder. It started to rain which felt great, but then stopped after only a few drops.
Back to the hotel on the Sky Train, and a wonderful shower. The shower here has two heads.. one regular head and then you turn a knob, and it has a rain head. Just amazing.

At the hotel bar we ordered some food, and had some mini pizza, nachos, and the McConrad... which was mini burgers.
Then time for a nap.

It was really hard to get up after the nap, but better to get up and go out, than to sleep till 11:00 pm and be up all night. So, we went back over to Pat Pong Night market, and shopped around for a while. I now have 4 Rolex's and two Breitling watches. (I have to stop buying knock off watches)

Then to the Happy Beer garden for a beer and some people watching. By this time it was almost midnight and I was fading, so we got a cab, and got back to the hotel. I got right into bed and fell asleep till almost 5:30 am. I am still a little sleepy today, but had a decent breakfast and my vendor is arriving, around 12:00 pm and we have to be setup by 5:00 for a client walk though of the slides.

1 comment:

michael S. said...

Awesome description Steve, almost like I was there, however, I wasn't. Just finished my gig in Charlottsville, VI. My story is kinda like that, but not really. Ended up at a college party after the event with my client, til it got broken up by the emt's and the local police. NIIIICE.

C YA...have fun and be safe!