Now times that by ten…
This is Bangkok, with all of it’s good and all of it’s bad.
It’s exciting and intoxicating. Stirring and provocative. Loud and bustling. Hot and humid. Weird and wild.
Dusk till dawn till dusk, up and down the sidewalks and on every street corner lies something new and different, intriguing and enticing. Yet simultaneously on these very same sidewalks and street corners are displays of the undesirable, unpleasant, and unsightly. There are endless food stalls, street vendors and markets. Day markets, night markets, flower markets, second hand markets, tourist markets, and local’s markets. Day spins into night at the infamous backpackers haven of Khao San Road. Hawkers shout “where you go, you need tuk tuk? you need massage (pronunciated in a high-pitched tone, masaaaaage)? you need tailored suit? cigarette case? t-shirt? sunglasses? girlfriend? boyfriend? ladyboy?” Oh and the smells. So many smells. Welcoming, delightful, and aromatic. Then two paces away, a sweet scent turns to a pungent stench. It’s hard to tell if it’s the food from the street vendors or whatever may lay in the street. You truly never know what you’re getting in Bangkok. It’s a roller-coaster on the senses!
Three consecutive days in Bangkok is two too many. An exhilarating first day in this city turns into a tiresome second day. The third day sits delicately on the edge of intolerable. It is time to move on, accompanied by all of the other travelers, weary of this major metropolis, eager for a taste of the laid back island life.