The following is my day by day recollection of my family vacation in Thailand.
It’s true, I needed a vacation. Up to this point, all my time off of work has been directed towards high school church retreats and camps. So no, they weren’t really breaks. Also, all my previous trips to Thailand have been for missions, so it was a nice change in pace.
Unfortunately, I’m not a fan of traveling. It’s more about the part where I have to sit on a plane for many hours. The actual destination and time spent there are fine. I’m a light sleeper, which means I basically need perfect conditions to fall asleep. Maybe it’s just me, but I can never get fully comfortable in those airplane chairs. So what ends up happening is that I fall in and out of sleep, probably only sleeping at most an hour at a time before waking up and trying again. It’s funny though, I do most of my movie watching on plane rides like these. For the ride there, I was able to watch Captain America 2, Expendables 3 and the new TMNT movie. I found all three very entertaining. After 15 uncomfortable hours of flying to Hong Kong and then 3 hours from there to Thailand, we finally arrived at the Bangkok International Airport.
Upon our arrival, I decided to channel my inner Stu for this trip. That is, I would try to take pictures only he would take. That includes his spur of the moment minimalistic artistic shots. With my limited creativity, I set out to attempt that any way. I wasn’t as cool as him though; he would walk around with nothing more than a camera around his neck and a pen and notebook in his back pocket. For any picture he couldn’t take, he would sketch instead.
Stepping out of the airport, I expected to be punched in the face by heavy heat and humidity as previous Summer trips have done to me. But it turns out Winter is great weather, so it wasn’t as hot or humid. Still, it was quite warm, and I had worn jeans on the plane ride here. I remembered what Stu told me on my first trip to Thailand with him:
“If you roll up your pants, you get a nice little breeze”
Incidentally, it was also my first try at a minimalist shot.
Not too far from the airport, we stopped for lunch at a S&P. I saw Khao Soi on the menu, so I ordered it for nostalgia’s sake. It’s a dish famous in Chiang Mai, but I thought I’d give it a try any way.
..and what meal in Thailand isn’t complete without some mango sticky rice?
After lunch, we traveled to Pattaya, a city by the ocean; which equates to great seafood and great views. The hotel we stayed at (Royal Cliffs Hotel) was the same resort where my uncle had his honeymoon. It was pretty clear why:
Oh, and like China, they have bathrooms meant for married people.. (again there were remote control screens, so it was okay)
My sister and I explored the hotel campus that afternoon, but we barely scratched the surface apparently. There was just so much to see and so much we didn’t know about. For dinner, we went to a restaurant set up on a pier where we had some fresh seafood. I snapped a pic of the pineapple fried rice because it was INSIDE a pineapple:
I also found this sugar packet comical:
At dinner, it was the first few instances that we saw Thai dating services. Or at least that’s how my sister and I classified it. Every time we saw a rich old man or european man on a date with a clearly native young Thai woman, we tallied it down. By night’s end, we saw 5 instances. We joked that it was maybe a Valentine’s day weekend special or something.
After dinner, my uncle showed us around the royal wing of the hotel where the most expensive suites are. That’s where I felt Stu would snap a pic like this:
Before the night was over, I ran 4.5 miles in the provided gym. Though I’m on vacation, I’m still training for a marathon.