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Yet another holiday trip to Bangkok!

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Dec 17th, 2011, 03:29 PM
  #1
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Yet another holiday trip to Bangkok!

My workday is almost done. Then I can head home and finish my packing!!

This will be trip #26 to Bangkok for me. I'm leaving tomorrow, first class, ORD-HKG on UA, and then HKG-BKK on Thai. This is a frequent flier ticket (my second one this year in first class) that cost me 140,000 miles and $2.50. Not bad! DH will be following me, but on a different day, on his own FF first class ticket. DS Brad (bradinbangkok) is already in Thailand on his own first class FF ticket, and has been reporting that the weather is great.

Not looking forward to the long flight(s), although I should be able to get plenty of sleep and eats in first class; but definitely looking forward to getting back to soi 8 Sukhumvit, Adelphi Suites! Not fancy, not 5*, nowhere near the river, but comfortable, and the staff all know us. And it is well-located for visiting friends in the area.

Since this is the 4th year in a row that we've gone to Thailand for the holidays, we have established a few traditions. There are some minor changes this year, but we are basically doing the same sorts of things for Christmas Eve/Christmas Day and the new year beach location.

I wish everyone a happy healthy holiday season, where ever you are spending it. May it be filled with everything you want it to be!
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Dec 17th, 2011, 03:55 PM
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Take us with you, Carol?

Looking forward to yet another report...
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Dec 17th, 2011, 03:58 PM
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Craig, there are quite a few last minute first class seats available! Come on over!
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Dec 17th, 2011, 04:50 PM
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Hi Carol,

If you can get me one of those $2.50 tickets, I will close the shop and join you there!!

I am very jealous, but very pleased for you at the same time.

At which Beach will you be seeing in the New Year?
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Dec 17th, 2011, 06:04 PM
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Shane, we have rooms with Marriott points at Hua Hin (first time there) Marriott Resort. We've been to Pattaya the last 3 years and decided to try a different location this year. I'm sure it will be lovely.
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Dec 17th, 2011, 06:17 PM
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We stayed at the Marriott Hua Hin a few years ago and really liked it. It is on the nicest part of the beach, a short tuk-tuk ride or pleasant 20 minute stroll from the centre of town.

If they are still there, try some of the restaraunts on the old pier near the Hilton. You sit along the end of the pier on the waters edge. There were several to choose from, they all seemed similar.

Reasonable food..Nothing fancy..Fabulous location. From the front door of the Hilton, head North perhaps a hundred meters.
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Dec 17th, 2011, 06:45 PM
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Thanks for the info, Shane. The pier sounds lovely. We will also probably have a car, so we can drive around Hua Hin a bit.

Hoping for upgrades to nice beachview rooms, since I just made Platinum with Marriott last month, in Amsterdam.
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Dec 17th, 2011, 08:22 PM
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Have a wonderful time, Carol! I wish I was back in the nice, warm weather of Bangkok!
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Dec 18th, 2011, 06:15 AM
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Have a great trip. We will think of you as we sit here in the cold of New England. Over New Years, we are having the daughter of our Thai Jeweler stay with us. Her main comment is "It gets so cold here!"

Have great holidays and we will follow along.
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Dec 18th, 2011, 07:42 AM
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and my very best wishes to you as well.... i wish we were all spending new years at khao lak...
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Dec 18th, 2011, 08:39 AM
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Have a good flight and trip. We will be at Adelphi Suites beginning Jan 2 for a week and hope we can meet up at some point.
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Dec 18th, 2011, 09:45 AM
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Oh how I wish i was in BKK, BUT I will "settle" for Bali
Have a fabulous time Carol, look forward to the on the ground report.
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Dec 18th, 2011, 09:46 AM
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Choa Lay is a GREAT seafood place in Hua Hin. It's one of the restaurants on stilts.
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Dec 18th, 2011, 11:41 AM
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Thanks, smeagol, for that suggestion. DH doesn't eat seafood, but I'll bet he could find something else on the menu that would appeal to him.

Well..... travel is an adventure!! The morning started with a phone call from United, saying that my flight to Hong Kong is delayed by 1hr or so. They suggested I leave at noon on the flight to Narita instead. First class all the way. Well....... that was not going to happen. DH is flying to BKK TOMORROW, doing a park sleep fly tonight after dropping me at OHare..... and he is not a fast-packer. I told the agent that there was NO WAY I would be at OHare for a flight at noon, since I'm three hours away from the airport. I said I will keep what I have, and hope I make my connection. I will have 45 minutes (give or take) which should be enough. A squeaker, no doubt, but I don't have to go back 'out' and come back 'in' as I'm just transferring from UA to Thai.

Anyway, the adventure begins. I'm sigging in the international first class lounge at OHare, and my 747 is right outside the window. Let's just GOOOOOOOOO.... okay???

Snacks, coffee (I'll have champagne on the plane), a bit of internet, writing in my journal, and posting here. I'll be boarding in about 15 minutes from now.

Wish me luck in HKG... (but I do love that city and would not mind having to fly onward the next morning..... Haha

We saw snow on the drive up here this morning. Not alot of it. The trees were absolutely beautiful. DH got out his camera and took a half dozen or so photos of them. There were frosty white... so pretty!

I hope to meet up with you, yestravel, at Adelphi. We get back from Hua Hin on the 2nd, probably mid day. I'll keep an eye out for you! (and you do the same... I'm nearly 6' tall, short pixie-ish hair (brown). I always do breakfast around 9, and I like to read my newspapers in the lobby afterwards.

Carol
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Dec 18th, 2011, 11:49 AM
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Oh Carol I aspire to have as many holidays as you.Do try Choa lay it's fab.
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Dec 18th, 2011, 12:29 PM
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And I aspire to have as many frequent flier miles as Carol. Hope all you Bangkok bound travellers have a wonderful holiday there. I hope you make your connection in Hong Kong, Carol.
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Dec 18th, 2011, 03:30 PM
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Bon voyage Carol, Jo and I will have to wait until june 2012 to be in Hua Hin we did stay at the Marriott last time, very nice, this time we will try the Hilton, then will be on our way to siem reap to pick up AMA 7 days river cruise to saigon. We will stop in bangkok for one night to go see Maeng at her new place. Joyeux Noel et Bonne Annee.
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Dec 19th, 2011, 12:13 PM
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Hello, or should I say sawasdee kah!! I made it to Bangkok several hours ago. I dropped everything and went to see Maeng, of course. No shrimp tonight (or chili either) as I was full from eating on the plane(s).

Well, we got to Hong Kong just fine, and there was a gate agent there, with my name on a sign. He told me to go directly to gate 40 because my BKK flight would be starting to board. (I wondered about my two checked bags)....

I made it through security check quickly, grabbed a small cart for my carry-on bag, which was a little bit heavier than when I started out, thanks to some quick duty free shopping at ORD.

The flight on Thai was 2 hours and 25 minutes. Since I had slept almost all the way to Hong Kong, I opted to stay awake on this flight and read/work crossword/sudoku. No problem staying awake.

The Thai flight was on a 747, I believe their 'new' version. The seats are very spacious indeed! Nothing crowded about it in any way. The seats don't have the big screen TV like United has. UA wins hands down on gimmicks! The UA food was really quite good. Thai's was better. Anyway, this 'new' Thai 747 had a smallish pop-up TV. I didn't see anything I wanted to watch, so popped it up to have a look, and then just stuck with the map feature.

The meal on UA started with yummy crab cakes, seafood bisque, and then a great salad. (enough for me... no entre ordered). I had a sundae for dessert though. I had the fresh fruit plate and yogurt, just prior to arriving in HKG. No mid-flight snack as I was sleeping.

The meal on Thai (again, I did not order entre) started with smoked salmon and a little spring roll sort of thing with mushrooms. Delicious! (oh, and the DOM was flowing freely) Then there was a tuna sashimi and small salad. Everything was super tasty. I had a sorbet with fresh fruit for dessert. That (and another glass of DOM) was quite enough, thank you.

Now for the Thai service!! Exceptional!!! positively exceptional!!! We arrive at BKK, and our gate is waaaaaay out beyond the south 40. It would be a very long walk (with heavy carry-on) to get to Fast Track (I was given a FT card). But no.... just as the first class passengers stepped off the plane, we were directed to airport carts (tuk tuks) and were DRIVEN to immigration. An agent was there to take care of each passenger/couple/family from first class. The agent saw me through immigration (he carried my carry-on) and then got a cart for my baggage. Remember, I had two checked bags.

The first class passenger bags came down the conveyor belt, and all first class passengers were on their way out the door, before anyone else was even at the immigration counter yet. Mind you, ONLY first class passengers' bags came down the conveyor. Not mine.

The agent asks me, didn't I check two bags? I said, yes, but my connection in Hong Kong was short, and maybe my bags did not make it. Another agent then walks up to where we are waiting, and says... I'm sorry, we have to go to baggage and fill out a report. Your bags will arrive tomorrow. I say no problem. I thought that might be the case, given the short time in Hong Kong.

On the way to the baggabe 'claim' counter, another agent came up and told us (I now have TWO agents taking care of me) that my bags did INDEED arrive in Bangkok, and that they were on their way down the conveyor.

Yes yes yes. There they came. JUST MINE. No one else's. By this time, other passengers from the HKG flight were beginning to arrive at carousel 10 to collect their bags. Imagine, only my two came down the conveyor. The (first) agent whisked them onto the baggage cart, and took me through customs and out to a taxi. He helped but my bags into the trunk of the taxi, and I was on my cay into the city in almost record time.

THAI wins hands down for service upon arrival in Bangkok!!!

Now, that said, DS Brad also flew into BKK on Thai, from PEK. He did not get the treatment I got, other than getting Fast Track. His arrival gate was not waaaaaaay out past the south 40. But he still thought Thai was great. He was nearly astounded when I told him all they did for me (as well as all the other first class passengers from my HKG flight).

Now, DH is on his way here. I called him as my taxi was pulling away from BKK. He said the United called him this morning and said that the HKG flight was running late (again) and that he should to the usual ORD-NRT-BKK routing, on UA. So that is what he is doing right now. He will be here in another 10 hours or so.

I went straight away to Side Pocket, as I said, to see Maeng. She will be selling the bar in early January. Evelyne, I will have to keep you posted on where she goes next, as she was telling me about her 'next' project! She does have something planned.

Isis... Maeng says that she saw you and Russ. So glad you two took the time to stop by and see her. Hope to see you in the next few days, while we are all here in BKK together!

NYwoman, Maeng is preparing for the arrival of your son. He will have a room all arranged. Not to worry!

Maeng and I played pool together. I've not played in YEARS but I still won 2 out of 3 games. I think Maeng 'let me win' haha!

I'm wide awake (3am) and am unpacked. I need to run downstairs to 7/11 (next door) and get a few things. They are open all night, so I won't have any trouble getting what I need. Tomorrow I'll go to the bigger super market and pick up some basics.

Great to be back in BKK. Weather is fabulous!!! (The Thais think it is cold...)

I'll be in touch. In the meantime, sawasdee kah, and have a great evening!

Carol
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Dec 19th, 2011, 12:19 PM
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I am a proofer... you'd think I'd proof my own tying! That should be 20 hours, and DH will be arriving, not 10! There are other typos as well, but maybe you figure those out... haha.

Off to 7-11.
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Dec 19th, 2011, 03:23 PM
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Rise and shine, Carol! (BKK time.)

Now, welcome back to the City of Angels. (And many thanks for your years of supporting the Thai economy, as well as your most recent efforts supporting our fine home of Singapore - and flying SQ business class!)

BTW, was it cherished TG607 F you flew in from HKG? I haven't flown her in that class for work for awhile, but always joyous times up front with those gracious Thai FAs. (But, Carol, you travel so heavy! Don't believe I've checked bags since the old mountaineering days - then, I'm just a non-shopping inclined business traveller.)

As always, have fun, shop 'till you drop, and should you desire something new (I think), check out the terrace bar at the St. Regis 'round sunset. As of ~ fortnight back, fine as ever.

Best,

macintosh (robert)


... Thai -- Smooth as Silk ...
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