Have you ever felt a love so strong, it permeates your being? Something so strong you can feel it in your soul and when you leave, you swear you can feel yourself falling to bits?
I feel this about two things – Patrick and Bangkok. Bangkok is my city; my favourite city. Almost everything about it gives me the
It’s the colours of the Buddhist temples – the reds, blues, greens and golds of Wat Pho, and the way they celebrate their religion; not
through immense cathedrals, but through intense, colourful temples, complete with shimmering gold stupas, intricately detailed murals
and tinkling bells, hanging from the roof to frightening off birds and bad spirits.
It’s the food – the street vendors who dish up pad thai and som tam from somewhat questionable looking carts on the side of the road, taking the plunge and hoping (like a typical foreigner) that it won’t make you sick. And the desserts are just as good! Banana and Nutella roti, cooked on a giant frying pan mounted on a street cart and drizzled with condensed milk. That roti
haunts my dreams. It’s concentrating on looking at your feet when walking through the part of Chatuchak Market that can only be described as “fresh produce”. Oink oink. Its the smell of the spices drifting through the comically squeezy laneways of Chinatown – it’s enough to make your mouth water. I couldn’t quite track it down, though.
It’s the shopping – buying more knock off Fred Perry polos and YSL handbags than I can possibly fit in my suitcase. Solution? Buy another suitcase! And fill that one too! It’s wandering through the markets and wanting to buy every single knick knack I see, just because it would remind me of that exact spot I was standing in when I bought it. It’s Patrick standing around looking bored while I contemplate how many more packets of incense I can safely transport in my already overflowing suitcases.
It’s the people and the wonderful, perfect “Sawatdee khrap!” and the respectful bow (‘wai’). It’s our lovely friends, Carlos and Shiva – two Nepali-speaking Burmese guys living in Bangkok and their never-ending hospitality. They took a day off work to take us to their favourite place – Siam Park, an amusement park not found in your guide books. A true local gem. It’s the nights we while away sitting
next to the fish pond, underneath the frangipani trees, drinking icy cold Singhas with them. It’s relaxing, listening to
Carlos translate our conversations to Nepali for Shiva and watching life in Soi Rambuttri happen around us.
I miss Bangkok endlessly. I’m happiest when I’m there. That’s a big call for having only been there for a grand total of two weeks in my whole life. But that’s Bangkok.