I rant you risten

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Sawadee Siam

Back to Asia we ventured into Siam for encounters and adventures with the Phuketians and Bangkokers. Looking for some sun, sand, sea and the sound of sweet love – we characterized laissez faire on Phuket. While we found the dining, metro, one off shopping, hustle and bustle you’ll need from a big city in Bankgkok. Another page from our book of adventures..

Capping off “Island Tour 2006”, Phuket was all about relaxation, a just right new years celebration, great fun with Joony and fun with friends. There is nothing finer than the lackadaisical routine of island nonchalance, and when you slip right into it, you really slip right into it. We woke up, shuffled in for breakfast, flipflopped back to the room, hit the beach, took a dip in the Andaman sea, read, drank rose in the sunshine, hung out under the parasols snickering at the baking French and Swedes, ate lunch barefoot, ogled the sex tourists and wondered with grief, lounged with afternoon rays at the pool, napped, watched fake dvds, dinner, and slept in amongst other things. lather rinse repeat – marvelous.

Unable to wheedle our way into an illegal fight with buckets of broken glass to cover your fists, we settled for ringside tickets at the Ratchadamnern boxing stadium for a big night of Muy Thai. Our fashionably late arrival into the 3rd fight was timed perfectly as the punters and touts walked in with us setting the stage for an electrifying evening. The first round would start off easy, a couple of jabs with some kicks here and there. With the sound of the bell signaling the end of the round, the grumble began to rumble from the crowds as they located the bookies to start placing bets. As the fight roared up in intensity, every break pushed the gambling up a notch with hands waving and money floating its way down to the floor. It’s so easy to start getting carried away with the crowd with their taunts and cheers as they have a sound for every different strike, lots of fun.. After a couple of Singhas, a TKO, some hunger pangs, a couple of really good fights and much involvement from the crowd, we decide to head back home but not before being mildly threatened by a cabdriver over a “fare haggle”, meter my ass..

A craving for big city public transportation was put to the test as we followed a magazine clipping to the Wang Lang market – think a much smaller Camden market but much less touristy and with much more strange food stalls. We decided to find something a little more off the beaten path than the famous markets, and we really did find "off the beaten path". Making a habit out of this sore thumb sticking out policy, we took the BTS sky train (which is unbelievably easy to use) to the last stop, got on the pier, boarded a longboat river taxi and traversed across the muddy waters to the other side for some very hardcore local yokel market strolling. The two of us, aimlessly wandering around a place where no one speaks English, the only foreigners in sight, and following ambiguous directions off a magazine clipping searching for unbelievably cool vintage sneakers, all in all, interesting excursion. Picking up some cool t-shirts, Joony comes out the winner, I fared well with the architect turned t-shirter, so we chalked up the experience and made our trek back.

You’ll never go hungry in Bangkok. A major aspect of the Thai culture that really kept the hustle and bustle going is how well and active their retail economy operates, and I’m not talking about the tourists. I have never been to a city where the local community is so keen on shopping and eating out that you see shops and food stalls everywhere you look. Everyone shops, and they do it till they drop - we couldn’t keep up and applauded their constitution. The other interesting observation about street food in thailand, it's stick oriented. you have your chicken, meat, or pork sates on a stick; you then have your fruit on a stick, your sausages on a stick; candy on a stick, the list just goes on and on..

What i learned: the disco tuktuks with the light and sound systems are very very cool - too bad we didn't get to ride one, it just never rolled by. chin pet medai (spelled phonetically) "hot and spicy makes me cry"- useful in someplaces but i have come to the conclusions that Thai cooks are as guarded over their chilis as French cooks are with butter. Muslim tourists in a hot beach climate: him, dressed in shorts & tank top; her, covered from head to toe looking uncomfortable in the humidity - there's something wrong there right? or is just me? After a while, i got tired of eating the local food, thank god Italians travel all over the world setting up restaurants and pizzerias everywhere, bless them..

An ode to companionship: breakfast orders always complimenting mine, damsel in distress when it came to opening jars, the end all be all of image consulting, hater of Chablis, getting the nod from random strollers, extra basil on her margarita, indirect sunlight worshipping, hopeless haggler, wandering photographer, much admired and appreciated patience, beautiful beautiful hair, polka dotted, enchanting and loving woman.


Amunki said...

A little haiku for you:

Flip-flop, haggle-whore
Wang Lang, Gang Bang, Mai Thai Nights
Munki on a stick...

Missy said...

aham shay u had fun :D

BintBuNaz said...

As delish as Munki-On-A-Stick sounds...

Candy! They have caaaandy.

You know, Rants -- you suck at keeping in touch. And implementing still-in-the-works projects.

But I'm writing again, kinda. With or without you.


Bahraini Rants said...

by the way, the still-in-the-works projects.. well they're still-in-the-works.

good to see you writing again..