Welcome to Bangkok... Bikes, food, and precious sleep.

I finally arrived in Bangkok on Saturday after what seemed like the longest journey ever with very little sleep... Well that's what happens when you're on an Emirates flight and you want to take full advantage of the facilities - films and the free bar. Okay, I didn't really take advantage of the bar this time (not after what happened on the flight from South Africa!) but that doesn't really matter. So, sleep didn't happen from the time I woke up at 6.30am (after 3 hours sleep then!!) until the 9.45pm on the 16th when I finally put my head down in Bangkok (that's about 1.45pm English time). Phew! The second flight was more enjoyable because I a) finally watched The Great Gatsby (amazing), b) had an incredible Indonesian breakfast onboard the Emirates flight (Nasi Goreng anyone?), and c) had some company from a lovely lad from New Zealand. We talked, and talked, and talked, and you know when you just click with someone and conversation flows? It was like that. 
We flew into Suvarnabhumi airport (a mouthful!) and endured the 2 hour queue for immigration, grabbed our bags, and jumped on the rather expensive express train to Phraya Thai station (a whole 90 baht instead of the 45 both of us were told... it was still only about 1.80 sterling) and then went our separate ways on the promise of meeting up at 10am the next morning outside the Temple of the Emerald Buddha (unfortunately this didn't happen and I feel dreadful for it, I got lost/nearly ran over/lost in the hundreds of people trying to get in). Anyway...
If I can give you one thing not to do in Thailand it's be so naive to think that a taxi driver will take you near Khao San Road on the meter when it's super busy. I ended up being abandoned in the middle of nowhere (ok, not quite, I just don't know where it was and without a working phone it made me a little nervous). The taxi driver (who's English wasn't too brilliant) pointed to a motorbike and told me to get on one - um I don't think that's going to happen with a  16-17kg backpack, a daypack, and an across the body bag...
...I ended up on the back of the motorbike...
I think I'm crazy. Honestly crazy. No helmet, no anything, and I've never been on the back of one on my life so when he was zooming in and out of cars, in front of buses, on the other side of the road, at about 40mph with poor little me clinging onto him for dear life, I was actually saying a little prayer... Please God let me get out of this alive... There's no way I'm dying on my first day in Bangkok. 
All that worrying for nothing... I arrived safe and sound, a little shook up but totally alive and with a little adrenaline rush.
My first night was spent at Sam Sen Sam Place, a 100 year old guesthouse on Soi Samsen 3, about 15 minute walk away from Khao San Road - close enough to be a part of the hustle and bustle if you want to be, but far away enough to actually have some peace and quiet. The guesthouse was lovely - I became accustomed to the 'taking your shoes off inside' quite quickly... and cold showers... neither of which are a pain in the heat of Bangkok (think nice cold tiles on your sore feet - it's actually quite perfect in a way).

I didn't really want to do much that first evening as you can imagine - I was so bloody tired. I've never really experienced major jetlag that I can remember. I guess it's been a long time since I've flown any major distance where there was going to be a big time difference. Rather than put my head down at 5pm after I finished speaking to Mum (Viber, you're a godsend) I decided to pull myself together and have a wander to find Khao San Road. Typically I went down the wrong road and ended up down a much nicer street called Soi Rambuttri (apparently Khao San's well behaved brother) and it was so lovely at night - so many restaurants. I settled for one called The Green Room and had my shrimp pad thai and a lovely Chang beer which cost me a whole 170 baht in total. Perfect. 

Heading back to the guesthouse was fine, like I said about 15 minutes walk and no trouble whatsoever. The room was basic but nice. I wanted a private one which set me back about 650 baht (annoyingly I can see the baht symbol on the keyboard but can I find the key to get it?!) but it included a little breakfast in the morning which was much appreciated to start the day right... And besides look at the size of that banana. It was the most adorable thing.



  1. Loving it Rach. Keep em coming. And Kudos for getting on the bike :)
    Take care, Jimbobalula x

  2. Looks like you are having the most incredible time!!! Love it!!!

  3. Looks amazing already, glad you (finally) got there safe x

  4. OMG I cannot believe the time has arrived and you are on your adventure. And almost as exciting, I can now comment on your blog hee hee! Looking forward to joining your on more of your adventure, although the motorbike bit had me slightly hyperventilating! x



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