Wednesday, December 26, 2012

In-between days

"I can't keep up my full tilt, full power, red hot, maximum pace all the time. I've got to take the odd breather, haven't I?"
- Holly, Red Dwarf

If you have a terrible sense of humour but you've become jaded to the innuendo potential of 'Bangkok,' you might like to head south to the seaside town of Bang Pu to rekindle this childish enthusiasm for an hour or two.

You'll probably be surprised to learn that this unremarkable location is the single place I've spent the most time this year, returning time and again between jaunts in other parts of Asia to spend a week or two each time in a well-equipped aparthotel (I think that's a portmanteaux of 'apartment' and 'hotel,' rather than implying they practice racial segregation).

This was a place I could spend time with my girlfriend, when she wasn't busy with family stuff, catch up on work, blogs and TV downloads, and generally do other things there isn't so much time for when you have to take a cross-country bus trip every three days. As much as I always looked forward to the next trip, it's nice to take some time off from travel agent hassle, Wi-Fi frustrations and other self-imposed annoyances, or I could go crazy. More so.

That's probably why this place has never featured in these blogs, as there isn't much to talk about in these in-between days apart from the odd friendly cat and less friendly dogs, but I found a few things to get up to in the local area when I felt particularly restless. Now I'm back to travelling solo, I doubt I'll stay here again. We'll see. I have a hard time staying in any place for too long, especially when I have the choice of being pretty much anywhere I want to.

Thank you, Bang Pu - your dubious food stalls and semi-reliable internet access helped preserve my sanity during downtime.

Bang Pu,
Samut Prakan

This friendly neighbourhood Buddha at the top of my street primarily served as a traffic signal
so I knew where to get off the songtaew. Thanks, Buddhy!

The Erawan Museum looms over highways and neighbourhoods and is more disappointing the closer you get

Bang Pu Seaside Resort gets marketing kudos for successfully convincing locals that seasonal infestations of migrating seagulls are actually a tourist attraction

Admittedly, they are the size of small horses

The friendly neighbourhood monitor lizards can get pretty big too

Depressed airport bus sets the mood for your holidays

If I were to judge this English phrasebook by its cover, I'd say it was aimed at students with modest aspirations of an 81.6% success rate

Ancient Siam gets a post-apocalyptic makeover for the Loi Krathong festival

Ngan Chedi festival. Just like Western countries, Thailand likes to pile on the festivals come 'winter'

What could be a more fitting way to pay respect to the temple than by driving a car recklessly around a wall?

I've been to Thailand 12 times and stayed a total of 190 days, and I'm pleased to report that this tame cabaret show featuring women in modest bikinis is the most sexually explicit entertainment I've seen.

I wonder how many other sometime-expats can say that? Dirty old gets

Personally, I prefer the fairground (a childish day out again again again again again again again again again again again again)

Thailand route map, part III

N Bang Pu
O Lopburi
P Nong Khai (Laos border)
Q Ranong (Myanmar border)
R Koh Phayam
S Koh Si Chang
T Sriracha

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