Thailand Trip Report-the Real Story

Nov 20th, 2009, 03:59 PM
  #1  
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Thailand Trip Report-the Real Story

Bob managed to pick us up in Cambridge at the correct time. Karen must have driven him. Bob driving, me in passenger seat, Beth and Karen in firts rear seat and Maureen in way back. The luggage fit only because Beth and I had forced Bob to upgrade to a larger vehicle than he had originally reserved. Easy ride to Queens and lunch at SRI. The food was very tasty. No appetite for me, but I could taste. Easy drop off of rental and we got to FK too early to check in. Waited until we could and it went smoothly. However, Beth and I had reserved two seats by themselves in the rear, but this magivally morphed into two adjoining seats in a row of three.

The JFK-FRA flight was the warmest ever. Sweat was pouring down my fur. Only one pair of socks. Way too hot. I was feeling poor, so I dozed with no reading or movie watching. Took a pass on the meals.

In FRA, we deplaned to a gate that was way too small for the flight. Most of the people were standing up and it was very crowded. We stayed outside the gate area until close to boarding and then we jammed in with the rest. In truth, this was way below the standard we had expected on Singapore Air.

Same plane for the FRS-SIN leg, but the temperature was much better. Again, I did not feel well and just closed my eyes most of the flight. Passed on all the meals. This cause great concern for B and K, but did not feel like ingesting food.

SIN was fine and off to BKK for a short flight. The best of the three flights. The immigration line was very short and baggage pick up easy. The driver through Tong was waiting and off we went to the Dreaded Marriott Resort and Spa. Beth and I had been hornswoggled into staying there instead of the luxurious ROS. I can't remember how this happened.

Now for the ridiculous part. Bob and Karen got upgraded to Executive Club privileges, but Beth and I and Maureen were not. Now, picture this. The clek tells Bob about his upgrade and he says "Goody". Does he say, "What about my traveling companions?" No! Does he say " I couldn't possibly accept an upgrade that isn't given to my companions?' No! He probably just says "What time is our free breakfast?" He is thought ful enough to inform us that if you buy parties at the bakery after 7:00 pm, it's half price. Great stale pastry at a discount.
Gpanda is offline  
Nov 20th, 2009, 04:58 PM
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Andy, sounds like you are somewhat recovered... and back to your old self (note the humor and fake anger at B)

Hope Krabi lives up to your expectations. Have a great time. Please try to schedule a visit to the Pickled Liver sometime when back in BKK. Maeng would love to cook (real) Thai food (or whatever you want) for you!!

Carol
simpsonc510 is offline  
Nov 20th, 2009, 05:07 PM
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Since both you and Bob left Bangkok the weather has been absolutely beautiful!

Carol,

I think Andy just want to feel better enough so that he can chomp on his cigars without Beth giving him the evil eye.
Hanuman is offline  
Nov 20th, 2009, 05:10 PM
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Just got a call from kuranosuke and he's back in town as well! Kathie will be arriving today so it seems like most of the Fodors Asian people are here.
Hanuman is offline  
Nov 20th, 2009, 06:11 PM
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I guess there is no spell check or proof reading available??

"to completely tell the truth", i must set the record straight, i did plead for an upgrade for the, but the hotel evidently felt them "unworthy"---their word not mine... He also fails to mention that i did secure river facing rooms for them in the preferable main building...

I will be on the lookout for future mistakes...

pook-- the weather is fantastic here too, just a bit grey
rhkkmk is offline  
Nov 21st, 2009, 12:29 AM
  #6  
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I'm a little better. But the cough persists. I struggle forward.

Don't worry, there's lots more to come about the Executive Club and its non members. You'll be glad to know we passed on the stale pastry and pais full price for delicious items in the morning. By we, I do not include Bob who was scaefing down the free breakfast.

On the day we arrived, we checked in to the NON EXECUTIVE CLUB room and went down to the pool. There were two young boys frolicking in the pool and we started talking to their mother. It turns out that she is the wife of the General Manager of the Marriott and was there with her four children. As you can imagine, Bob was like a shark with blood in the water. Meanwhile, I was teaching one of the daughters how to make a loud horn sound with her hands. I'm pretty sure the mother/wife would have been glad to learn to escape his Bobness.

In truth, the pool is wonderful. Large and very well landscaped. Very relaxing.

Marriott boat to Taksin Tha and oriental boat to Oriental. Walked down towards Charoen Kreung. We ate dinner at Tongue Thai. The chicken with cashews (Bob's favorite) was the best I've ever had. I'm eating tiny portions, but none of it went to waste.
Gpanda is offline  
Nov 21st, 2009, 04:20 AM
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spell check broken again...BU Law school..Penn.. MD schools??
rhkkmk is offline  
Nov 21st, 2009, 05:27 AM
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Bob, please just consider yourself lucky that Gpanda's not typing in all caps, as he did on the European forum when inquiring about shower facilities in the Frankfort airport. We feel as though we were screamed at, and how urgent could a shower possibly be???

BC
bookchick is offline  
Nov 21st, 2009, 06:19 AM
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I'm a little better. But the cough persists.
The fever has passed, but tha malady lingers on.

I'm eating tiny portions, but none of it went to waste.
TMI. Far TMI.

how urgent could a shower possibly be???
Some questions are better unasked.
DonTopaz is offline  
Nov 21st, 2009, 07:33 AM
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Finally, the real story. What is that tag line that would be most appropriate here?
Oh yes:

"We report, you decide."

By the way, who is driving the rental car? If Panda really was under the weather did Bob really still leave the driving to him? And, did Bob at least secret out from the freebie Executive Bkfst from nice pastries and such for the others?
tengohambre is offline  
Nov 21st, 2009, 02:52 PM
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Oh god did I have a great laugh when I could just picture the very polite desk clerk informing Mr. Panda sir so sorry but you are not worthy! Oh my I have not had such a good laugh in a long time and Bob will milk this one for weeks if not months.
BillT is offline  
Nov 21st, 2009, 03:39 PM
  #12  
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Bill-sorry to say that when we checked in it was separate from Bob. We only learned of his upgrade after the process occurred,


First full day, we gnawed at our pastries and met Bob and karen in the lobby for a taxi ride to Bob's jeweler, Porn, in the Nana Hotel. This was a mini van and seating was easy for the five of us. Bob and Karen have spent thousands in this store over the years, so you can imagine the welcome they got upon entering the store. It made me ill. Karen had a number of assignments and she huddled with the female half of the operation. The male half showed Beth and Maureen countless items. Several things were purchased. Bob and I went with a younger Thai man to the 7-11 so Bob could get a sim card for his phone.

Took a cab, normal size over to Coconut Palm restaurant, near the Grand Palace. Bob in the passenger seat and the four of us squished into the back. We had to breath in sequence to allow for enough room. The people at the jeweler had looked up the address of the CP, called them and wrote it out in Thai for the taxi. Lunch was good. At least my few nibbles were.

Bob and I took a taxi back to the Marriott, while Karen, Beth and Maureen went to the flower market to get some flowers for Dang, Mrs Hanuman.

Upon arriving at the M, there was a message that our driver would pick us up at 3:30, an hour earlier than the original 4:30 pick up. Infering from the language of the message, Tong had decided that the traffic required this earlier pick up. Frantic preparations ensued, but we made the deadline.
Gpanda is offline  
Nov 22nd, 2009, 03:46 PM
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Dinner at Hanuman's house was wonderful. He's a great host and Dang is a superb hostess. She continually provided warm tea and honey for my ongoing cough. Their house is very comfortable with a great deck and BBQ area. Dang is like Beth and the living room was filled with pillows. Comfy on a panda's back. The food was very tasty. My appetite was still off, but two dishes that really stood out were an appetizer wrapped in lettuce leaf and the eggplant. It was great to make a deeper connection with a faithful Fodorite. We tried to leave Bob there, but Hanuman was too smart for us.

Up early and exercise at the gym. Non-stale pastry and Bob, Karen, Beth and I took a taxi to the Platinum Mall. Maureen went to get her hair cut. This mall is for young BKK natives. Lots of the stuff was quite amusing, but none was panda ready in either style or size. Karen and Beth perused the shoes closely.

Taxi over to Central Chitlom for lunch at the loft. Small nibbles of Italian food for the panda. After lunch, I was not feeling tip top, so I took a taxi back to the hotel while B,B and K went out to the Jim Thompson Outlet on Soi 93.
Gpanda is offline  
Nov 22nd, 2009, 07:08 PM
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am i going crazy or did i report this same info a few days agooo

ALWAYS A DAY LATE AND A DOLLAR SHORT!!!

and you should try to put up with him for 2+ weeks...beth is a dream, but....
and that cough and his refusal to seek treatment.... i guess its just another attention seeking situation... poor us, but we are the bigger people for putting up with it...
rhkkmk is offline  
Nov 23rd, 2009, 09:38 PM
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Here's something Bob did not include:

Dinner was at Brio, the Italian restaurant at the Marriott. We ordered and Bob asked for some ice to go with his water. None was brought. He asked again. Stll none was brought. The next time the waitress came by, he tapped the water glass and said "Not Good."

Shortly thereafter ( showing unbelievably bad timing), a gentleman in a suit cam over and introduced himself as the general manager of the marriott. He said, "I understand you entertained my children yesterday." He was being politic. If he was accurate, he would have said " I understand some of you enettained my children, while another one of you shamelessly sucked up to my wife." Guess who? His Bobness.

Then, the GM made the mistake of asking how we were loiking the hotel. His Bobness launched into a veritable list of complaints. He loudly noted the failure of the waitress to bring him the requested ice. The GM apologized. Sensing weakness, his Bobness went in for the kill and mentioned that when he and Karen were in the Executive Club, they had ro wait 20 minutes to get a glass of wine. The GM graciously surrendered and made his abject apologies. The next day Bob and Karen reported that when they went into the Executive Club, the staff was all over them and very attentive. Let's imagine the converstaion that the GM had with the staff. Is there any chance that the phrase "pain in the a__" was mentioned several times? Of course, Beth, Maureen and I were not treated any differently after Bob's dressing down of the GM. There's a lesson here.

The food was good, but not great at Brio. We walked back to the rooms with staff scattering rose petals in our path.
Gpanda is offline  
Nov 23rd, 2009, 10:58 PM
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au contraire... the food was very good... it was 4 times i asked for the ice over perhaps 30 minutes... he did not likle the food because he was "sick" and infecting everyone in sight...

let's see who was it who pumped the wife for info, including asking twice what her husband does in thailand---she answered shyly that he is the GM...."Where"--- at the marriott...

oh, yes and the muscle trick and the annoying whistle....not so annoying really---just annoying to the other 100 people trying to relax in the pool on a sunday afternoon..

if the truth is told...
rhkkmk is offline  
Nov 24th, 2009, 02:13 AM
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Oh dear, I have to get the real details from Francis. This is all too confusing.
MichaelBKK is offline  
Nov 24th, 2009, 03:53 AM
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Italian food in Shanghai. Now Italian food in BKK.
I'm not sure why they just don't go to Italy . . . .

And, surely, after all that commotion Panda must have been upgraded to the Executive Wing too. If not, you wonder why they abandoned the ROS in the first place.
tengohambre is offline  
Nov 24th, 2009, 04:05 AM
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I must say that I do like the Marriott- I think its a great resort and a good value for the money- but I did have one complaint on our last stay there (nothing major) but it was similar to what Bob experienced with the water thing. When we had breakfast at the hotel restaurant each day it was real problem getting the staff to fill our coffee cups. Not that there was not plenty of staff around but they seemed not to pay attention to these sort of things. Also we did not notice any manager walking about checking on things. Also they were not attentive to clearing our table when we went back for seconds at the buffet. We passed our comments on to the management but I guess it continues to be an issue. I chalk it up to poor management and training.

It’s the small things like that that will keep the Marriott at a 4 star level and not a 5 star. At the Penn this would never happen. Your cup would never be more than half empty and if you looked at a staff member for more than 2 seconds they are instantly at your table. Of course one pays for such service.
BillT is offline  
Nov 24th, 2009, 05:56 AM
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Best wishes for a lovely get-together to all of you gathering in Bangkok as we prepare for Thanksgiving back here in the states. You Boston area folks have made the wiser choice -- it is grey, drizzling, and 45 degrees here in your corner of the homeland. I suspect that the Pacific Northwest is similar.

I am cooking for a holiday group that includes 3 Chinese, 1 Ukrainian, and an American vegetarian who is a Tamil scholar between stints in India. It should be fairly hilarious introducing traditional American Thanksgiving foods to our guests. I am determined to give them an an authentic experience but I can only imagine what the sight of a (hulking, intact) 22 lb turkey will do to our Chinese and Tamil/vegetarian friends.

Meanwhile, a mango ripens on the windowsill and coconut milk is nearby so that we can feast on some mango sticky rice later in the week-end.

Happy Thanksgiving to all Americans gathered in Bangkok.
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