ONE NIGHT in Bangkok (23 hours to be exact)
We arrived in Bangkok and the first thing I noticed was how polluted the air was. It was such a drastic difference from the air quality of Northern Thailand. Our first adventure was to the Temple of Dawn. It was a beautiful, large temple a few stops up the Chao Phyra River. What was unique about Bangkok is their mass public transportation system consisted of several express long boats with color coated for flags representing their route.
The “160 baht” Picture
We exit the boat and arrive at the Temple of Dawn, as we walked across the lawn around to the entrance we see one of those cheesy touristy life-size pictures where you stick your head through the hole and walla you’re a monk standing next to your best friend who is now an elephant ready for your picture to be taken. So of course we threw our cameras to some European tourist standing near by and the 4 of us stuck our face through the cutout holes for a picture. As we left to collect our camera some Thai women ran out from behind the temple demanding 40 baht from each of us for the picture (that she didn’t take), we questioned her and she pointed out the tiny “40” at the bottom of the picture. Later we saw that the women had a little lawn chair inside the temple within distance of her cheesy photo-opp where she can spy on who puts there head in the cutout and charge them 40 baht.
After accepting the loss of our 40 baht, we gathered ourselves and walked around to the entrance of the actual Temple of Dawn. We expected to pay the standard 20 baht to visit the temple, but when I went to pay the women working informed me it was 40 baht, I wasn’t dressed appropriately so that would be an additional 60 baht to rent “cover-ups” and finally another 100 baht deposit for the “cover-ups.” Exhausted from arguing over baht, we paid and prepared to walk up the steep temple. That’s when we looked around and no one else required “cover-ups” and as if we didn’t already standout before, we now looked straight ridiculous, but ready for this temple!
After being scammed into overpaying for a few more temples we headed back to the hotel to get ready for dinner. I had been feeling a bit unwell all day, but now I felt extremely ill and had chills. Swine flu-like symptoms and a 13 hours nap concluded my trip to Bangkok.