April in Bangkok, again!

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Apr 20th, 2014, 06:21 PM
  #21
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Filmwill, I am not a foodie, plus I have food allergies, so I'm just going to plan on eating before I board this flight in the future. I typically do not eat much when flying anyway.

I was a bit surprised that cabin lights were turned on 1.5 hours before we were going to land. No meal was served, so WHY wake up the passengers?? Other than that, the flight attendants were polite and professional.
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Apr 20th, 2014, 11:38 PM
  #22
 
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carol, maybe next year. boy, i miss that pork knuckle at tawandang
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Apr 21st, 2014, 08:52 PM
  #23
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Next year it is, Ken.

Just passed the camp site at Lumphini Park. Anti-govt faction still at it. Lots more police are visible. Hmmmmmm..
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Apr 21st, 2014, 10:06 PM
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Just booked for February Woohoo

So the camp site made you feel uncomfortable ???
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Apr 21st, 2014, 11:17 PM
  #25
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Not at all uncomfortable, Patricia. I was just surprised to see it as there seems to be no other anti-govt activity. But Im pretty much staying around Sukhumvit. There was a huge presence on December, with much of Sukhumvit closed to traffic because of rally sites.


Also, the red shirt rally fizzled and didn't happen a couple of days ago.

My taxi driver pointed out the police. They seemed to be looking at taxis for some reason.
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Apr 21st, 2014, 11:51 PM
  #26
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I forgot to mention today's exchange rate. $1 = 32.2 baht. This is the rate at VASU, which is the exchange location I always use. They offer better rates than walk-ups, for sure. The Euro exchanged for 44.3 baht (I had some left over Euros from recent trips to Switzerland/Germany) I wish I could get 40 baht to the dollar again, like I did back in 2001!
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Apr 22nd, 2014, 06:24 AM
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Thank you !
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Apr 23rd, 2014, 12:56 AM
  #28
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Tonight is the big birthday bash at Tawandang. Number 2 of the 2 birthday parties that bring me to Bangkok every April. I wish everyone could enjoy this favorite nightclub as much as we do. We will probably have anywhere from 60-80 people, eating, dancing, laughing, drinking great beer brewed right at Tawandang, plus enjoying a fabulous live show on the big stage!! Tawandang is a great experience. We have been enjoying it time and again since 2001. When we first went there, we were the ONLY falongs (foreigners) in the place, for sure. There is seating for at least 1000+ people, and they were all Thai, except TWO of us. Needless to say, we really felt like we had found the best "local" attraction!! A Thai friend had invited us to join her there. Now, there will be perhaps a few dozen falongs in the crowd on any given night at Tawandang. Word has gotten out about this fabulous party venue.

I was on the skytrain today and I could hear a very small demonstration taking place near the Phloenchit skytrain station. I did not get off the train to have a look. I also noticed that construction is progressing very quickly on the brand new mall next to Central Chitlom department store. I'm not sure when this one is scheduled to open, but it looks high end. Progress is also being made on the HYDE property on Sukhumvit, near soi 15. This will be a Hyatt hotel, plus, hopefully, some serviced apartments. As many of you know, I prefer to stay in a serviced apartment when in Bangkok, rather than a hotel room. I will surely have a look at HYDE when it is completed! The location is excellent.

Temps in Bangkok are in the upper 90s, nearly 100. It's HOT. But after the extended Illinois winter, I'm really ready for this.
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Apr 24th, 2014, 12:44 AM
  #29
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We had 75 to 85 or more people at the Tawandang party. It was an epic night, with food, beer, entertainment, friends, laughter and good times. Do give Tawandang a look if you are looking for a great nightclub un Bangkok that isn't the cookie cutter typical music and dance.
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Apr 24th, 2014, 10:36 AM
  #30
 
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Have a great time.

Happy Travels!
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Apr 25th, 2014, 07:57 PM
  #31
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Today begins a 5-6 day driving trip to Chiang Mai. DS has driven quite a bit in Thailand. He enjoys getting out of the city. There will be 3 of us, one being a Thai friend, Lat. We are expected for dinner with Thai friends in Phitsanulok (so) tonight.

I don't know how much internet connectivity I will have, but my Thai smart phone should certainly keep me in touch.

Let the adventure begin!
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Apr 26th, 2014, 03:07 AM
  #32
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Day 1 of the road trip started about 11:00 am. The destination, Yodia Heritage Hotel in Phitsanulok. This hotel is very nice! The standard room is lovely, with a small terrace, sitting area, 2 twin-sized beds, a bathroom with both tub and shower. Breakfast is complimentary in the morning. The drive was pleasant, passing rice fields (burning going on) and mountains in the distance. Nakhon Sawan is about one hour south of here and has a lovely hilltop temple with large Buddha. We did not have time to stop for a look. Maybe next time.
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Apr 27th, 2014, 06:03 PM
  #33
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Day two of the road trip took us from Pitsanulok north to visit Phu Hin Rongkla National Park. We took a hike to see the area where Thais fought off Chairman Mao who was trying to turn SE Asia into communism. Some unique geography for sure. Temps at this higher elevation were cooler than Bangkok! The scenic look outs were really stunning.

From the national park, we drove to Petchabun Province to eat dinner and then spend the night at the Imperial Phukaew Hill Resort which is located up in the hills in the countryside.

Dinner was a selection of Thai dishes. The food was great (not the same presentation as the night before) and service was excellent.

The resort is spread out over many acres, with unique little cottages here and there. My own cottage was a tri level suite with bath (with round tub) at the very top, then mid level king bed. The bottom level is a wrap around sofa and table. There is a good sized patio on the lowest level as well. Very unique. The place has lots of stairs for navigating the hillside and getting to the cottages.

It was a very scenic day with the mountain drive, the national park, and then spending the night up in the hills.

Next stop Chiang Mai.
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Apr 28th, 2014, 05:45 AM
  #34
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Day 3 was a 6 hour drive, from Khao Kho, Petchabun to Yaang ComeVillage Boutique Hotel in Chiang Mai. Good choice for hotel. We usually stay along the river at what used to be Westin Riverside, then a Sheraton, and I think it's a Holiday Inn now! Y C Village is a pleasant change.
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Apr 29th, 2014, 07:06 PM
  #35
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Today will be a day trip to Doi Inthanon. The highest point in Thailand is also there, as well as many waterfalls. It should be a very nice drive.

We had Indian food last night, cooked for us by our Indian friend (a chef) in his home. It was very simple and absolutely delicious!
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Apr 29th, 2014, 07:16 PM
  #36
 
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We enjoyed our stay at Yaang Come Village a number of years ago. It is a lovely property, isn't it?

Glad to hear you are having fun! We are off to Paris next week.
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Apr 30th, 2014, 03:21 AM
  #37
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Enjoy Paris! I had a lovely week there last July. I stayed in guenmai's favorite apartment.

Getting a heavy downpour, which cools things off nicely. Will have dinner with Thai friend who owns one of the big woodcraft exporter businesses at Hangdong Market.

Doi Inthanon, the highest point in Thailand, and two waterfalls made an ideal day trip out of Chiang Mai. I did not realize it, but if you trust information on wiki, Doi In than on is in the Himalayan range!
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Apr 30th, 2014, 03:33 AM
  #38
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Now why did my dumb smart phone separate Inthanon?
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Apr 30th, 2014, 06:02 AM
  #39
 
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Ah, the wonders of auto-corrrect!
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Apr 30th, 2014, 05:36 PM
  #40
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I want to recommend a really terrific Thai restaurant in Chiang Mai. It is just outside the city, on the way to Hangdong/Banta Wai woodcraft market area. It is very close to the Chiang Mai Night Safari. The name used to be Rainforest but is now called Khaomao-Khaofang Restaurant. The place reminds me of the USA version of Rainforest Cafe, but on steroids. The place is very large, and has waterfalls, ponds, bridges and pathways through a "jungle" of sorts. The food and service were excellent. The restrooms were unique enough that I took a couple of pictures! If you get the chance, do try Khaomao-Khaofang.

We are driving back to Bangkok today, after a really nice 6-day drive north in an Avis rental car. DS is not intimidated by driving in Thailand, and has done this drive once before. It certainly is do-able. We will try to work in a longer drive the next time, to include Chiang Rai, Pai, Mae Hong Son and other places.
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