Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Thailand Part 5: The Grand Palace

We went to Bangkok's Grand Palace after our morning spent at the floating market.

The palace has a strict dress code that not one of us was ready for. In the end we were forced to rent some really unfortunate pants from a little store across the street.

And then we were in. This is the probably the pointiest, shiniest place on earth.

Mike, Clarence, and I in our rented pants. I was still refusing to part with my adventuring hat purchased earlier on the river.

My favorite part was this very long mural of an epic mythological battle. The apemen, pigmen, birdmen, demon guys, giants, and humans all duked it out battle royal style. It was all very Lord of the Rings.

A dog faced gentleman getting sorted out.

I laughed out loud when I turned the corner and spotted this guy. He is actually just touching up the faded spots, but he still looked out of place. A well negotiated bribe here might have landed me a cameo in this painting. Just add my face on that guy with the six beefy arms, please.

Chakri Mahaprasad Hall is a bit apart from the other buildings. It feels much more stately and classy: you don't need to cover a building in glitter to convey a sense of grandeur.

We were totally hat twinkies!

Next are a few random things.

These are common condiments used in Thai dishes. These came with a plate of pad thai. The first two are pepper based. That I can handle. The third one, though, is straight sugar. I didn't mess with that.

Some dried tamarind that I picked up at a convenience store. Although this fruit looks like something a dog might have left in a park, it is actually pretty good.

The hotel was a few blocks into a residential neighborhood, which was a nice chance to see a bit of everyday life. That life includes packs of wild "soi dogs" that roam the streets. One particular night there were quite a few of them. I even had a group of them following me for what seemed like an eternity. I didn't dare stop or look back, but I could hear their many toenails clicking on the pavement. I found myself pondering the best course of action if I was attacked by them... run or fight, run or fight. How many stray dogs could I fend off before being devoured, or at least slightly delayed?

1 comment:

  1. When I first visit Bangkok I found that I can see Temples everywhere, especially during the tour of the Chao Phraya River. I've saw the real lifes of people living on both sides of the river, It's a heart warming experience for me. One things to remember: when visiting temples, show respect to the Buddha, and the monks. Take off your shoes before entering into the hall and don't wear shorts or tank tops in temples.