25.05.2007 - 25.05.2007 35 °C
Before we left New Zealand I tried to get Katherine to practise the Thai name for Bangkok. The shortened name is Krungthep aka the City of Angels. Today we had a tedious travel day from Koh Chang (Elephant Island) to Krunthep.
It was one of those bundle days but with more space between the rides. Our taxi arrived early a bit after 7:30am so the yummy banana pancakes we had ordered had to be squashed into a takeaway container (and this also explains why I left with the room key).
We spent some time at a pier waiting for our ferry ride. Periodically another taxi would arrive and deposit some more foreigners. We amused ourselves by watching a man put his catamaran into storage for the rainy season. He was an Englishman and ran a business taking snorkellers and others around on day trips. Unfortunately, we had to leave before we saw the excitement of the crane left his boat out of the water.
At the mainland we paid 10B for a short ride down the ferry pier to a place to wait for the bus. This is a restaurant out front and somebody's house out back. The bus left at 11:30am and we had a lot more waiting so we wondered why we had to leave the guesthouse so early. Never mind. It is the way of things.
About 11:10am they started preparing the bus and at 11:30am we boarded. We picked up some more passengers at another pier then headed to Bangkok. It seemed quite slow travelling but we picked up speed when we turned off at Rayong for the inland route to Chonburi. Some hot, sticky hours later we actually stopped for a break. Then it took another couple of hours to get into the heart of Bangkok. Katherine was right, grumpy by then.
We were dropped on a corner near Khao San Road and I navigated us to and along Soi Rambutri until we found Lamphu House, tucked down an alleyway off the soi. It is a very comfortable place and popular so I was glad I had booked ahead. We have a small and tidy aircon room with a balcony large enough to sit out on, which is unusual in Bangkok. There is no tv but they show DVDs on a plasma screen tv downstairs.
We ate at a guesthouse nearby and took a walk down Khao San Road. This was interesting to me because in all my visits to Thailand this was the first time I had been there. There were many people, lights, stalls. We just walked and looked. The only thing we bought was a postcard of a wat we had been to in Chiang Mai.