After a night out on the town coming off a night of no sleep, I was ready to sleep in the next day but if there’s one thing I learned from traveling in Buenos Aires and not experiencing any of the nightlife and not even seeing Evita’s grave, it’s that sleeping in is a damn waste of time. You never know when you’ll have the same opportunity so spending the day in bed is likely to result in serious regrets about “shit I should’ve done.” So it was up and off to the weekend market.
This being my first market experience in Southeast Asia I was mildly overwhelmed. Not just by the sheer volume of the available goods, but also by the creeping heat as we walked around outdoors. You could pretty much get anything at the market from clothes to jewelry to knives to electronics to puppies to flying squirrels. Trying to keep myself from falling down the slippery slope of cheap adorable animals, the only things I bought were some less adorable animals. On a stick. Generally with some kind of fish sauce and chili peppers. Priorities people, priorities.
The closing of the market was signaled by the 5 o’clock hail to the King, during which everyone stopped what they were doing, froze, sang the national anthem, and then continued along their merry way. Had Johnny not warned me about this I would’ve thought I was in the middle of a flash mob.
After a much needed shower it was back out to Banyan Tree’s absolutely stunning rooftop bar. Panoramic views of the city skyline – with cocktail prices that won’t let you forget paying for the view. However, they perfectly executed my dirty Ketel 1 martinis, so money well spent.
Not being able to maintain that type of spending all night, the next stop was the infamous Khao San Road which is the bar and backpackers area. As would be expected, it was total chaos once we got out of the cab. Khao San road was packed with backpackers (read: white people) sitting in cafes chugging Chang beers and buckets of liquor. Vendors selling tank tops, cigarettes, pad Thai, crickets, scorpions and an assortment of other shit that seems like a good idea when you’re drunk, were calling to everyone walking down the street. No longer being 21 and into this kind of thing unless really drunk, we headed to the end of the road to a quieter bar that had a live band and ordered a bottle of Johnny Black.
Big mistake. Since I hadn’t preceded my scotch-whiskey consumption with Thai Redbull guess what happened. Pukey time! But, being a big fan of the boot and rally – and also not being a fan of missing out on shit I stuck with the group as we trudged into The Club until 4 in the morning. Wisely avoiding alcohol, I dragged myself onto the dance floor and proceeded to dance and enjoy loud clubby music. Sometimes you just need that.
The next day I was finally able to relax and leisurely explore some of our immediate area. I had noted a Korea Town on our way to the hostel so I dragged everyone down the road to try and find the restaurant. Sometimes I think I was born the wrong Asian since I have an obsession with Soon Du Bu and have had it in almost every country since I started traveling. Bangkok was definitely one of the better ones.
After lunch it was shopping time! We ended up at Terminal 21 which is the most crazy ass mall I have ever seen. Each floor was themed with a different international city (Rome, Paris, Tokyo, London, Istanbul, San Francisco etc.) and accordingly each floor had a different decor of local landmarks and different types of stores. London was all red phone booths, collared shirts, and dressy sneakers. Tokyo had sumo wrestlers, Hello Kitty, and short skirts and oversized sweaters. The America floor sold plus sized clothing, rascal scooters and deep fried butter.
After a long day of eating, shopping and eating again it was time to head back to Soi 4 for some more eating! I actually hadn’t tried any of the street food yet (bad Risa!) so it was due time for me to give it a shot. My noodles for take away were awesome, served in a Styrofoam bowl and the broth given to me in a plastic bag, and my Thai Iced Tea off the street was equally as good. This meal also brought something to my attention. While I was eating everything and everything from street vendors, I was still brushing my teeth with bottle water. I am so smart. S-M-R-T!