Originally posted June 2, 2012:
This morning (after we skyped with the kids! Yeah!) we met up with the Brenemans and braved the Bangkok subway. Turns out, it’s an excellent and pretty easy system to use, as long as you know what stop you want! Again, spoiled Americans, when you go to buy subway tokens, there’s an option on the machine to go through the process in English. The “token” is a little round plastic thing that you tap on a sensor to get through the turnstiles. What I didn’t know was that you need the same token to get OUT of the subway! So I held up the line a bit digging through my purse trying to find the token again. Then you drop it in the machine to get out.
Following some advice from others, we knew we wanted to check out the Chatachuk weekend market. The completely charming doorman at our hotel gave us a subway map and circled our stop for us, and warned us that this is one place in Bangkok where we should watch our pockets and purses.
We cruised through the subway and got to the stop and it dumped us out onto THE LARGEST outdoor market I have ever seen. It’s like Saturday market on steroids. Someone said that once you go in you lose all sense of direction and that is so true. It was a labrynth.
Trent, who was not as easily distracted by all the amazing goods as I was, did a great job at keeping us on a back and forth path so we had some method to the madness. Catie and I were just in heaven, there was beautiful stuff all around us and at such great prices. Plus, it just felt so authentically Thai, even though it’s absolutely for tourists like us! It’s not all outdoors, though. It’s aisles and aisles and aisles of covered vendors. The smart ones had lots of fans blowing on their customers. I honestly could have stayed there another couple of hours and spent a hundred dollars more! But Trent cut me off. Plus, it was hot, hot, HOT in there. We were all just dripping with sweat. I almost paid $3 for a handkerchief just so wipe the sweat from my face.
Every once in a while, one of the vendors was a food vendor, so we chose one with picture menus on the wall and teeny tiny little wooden tables with square stools and we crowded around one to eat. It was delicious and all four of us ate for about $6. Total.
I was also proud of myself, b/c I managed to use a pay phone to call a local number to confirm our dinner cruise reservations. The person on the other end had us down and told us they would pick us up at the Pantip at “five one five.” “Five fifteen?” “Yes.”
We have a couple hours before then, so we’re relaxing and will probably go take a dip in the pool. We all keep smiling and saying “Tomorrow’s the day! Tomorrow!” Can’t believe after all this time, the countdowns, the delays, we’re down to ONE day more to meet our boy!
PS: I included a picture of the street vendor where we got our hotdog wontons yesterday.