Bangkok, Thailand

Bangkok is literally on the other side of the world from where I live – 12 time zones, so that when it is noon in one place, it is midnight in the other. This makes it difficult to call home, and it makes for a long plane ride. Across the Pacific Ocean to Japan was about 13 hours and then another 6 hours or so to Bangkok, Thailand.

Bangkok is in many ways a city of contrasts, from utmost poverty across the street from the hotel to beautiful hotels, skyscrapers, malls, and of course silks! This trip was part of Nicolet Biomedical’s “2000 and beyond” international sales meetings and we stayed in The Imperial Queen’s Park Hotel. As in other Nicolet travel, meetings and presentations were important, and we were showing cutting-edge new Neuro-diagnostic technology. There was time to show our wares to our international compatriots, and reward them for their sales at a banquet. 

The Imperial Queen’s Park Hotel was large and beautiful with teak in abundance. Amenities and service were overwhelming. I think I can say that the best hotel service I have ever had was here. One morning I called down to the front desk about some laundry that I wanted done, and in less than three minutes, while I was still preparing the 
laundry ticket, the maid knocked on the door. Now it took longer than that just to ride the elevator up to my floor. I surmised that she was in waiting down the hall. How could they have that kind of service in a hotel so large – a hotel that is two towers high. 

Well, my cove does not have a monopoly on orchids.

I saw more orchids in Bangkok than almost anywhere else I have been in the world. There were orchids on your pillow at night. And orchids for decoration everywhere such as in the buffet line. Food was extraordinary, somewhat spicy, but a seafood lover’s delight.

Even though slums faced the front of the hotel, the back of the hotel faced a beautiful park, where the locals exercised and relaxed. Just out the door to the park was an ornate
 depiction of Thai artistry and culture. One could then cross the park to a mall which sold almost everything, but certainly was not the largest mall that I saw. Also beside the mall and park was the Skytrain, a very modern elevated rapid transit which is an effort to do something about the traffic in the city.
 Bangkok is a city of millions, and the sea of yellow cabs even reminded me of New York City. It was possible to ride one of those yellow cabs or one of the motorized three-wheel rickshaws when one needed a taxi.

The city of Bangkok, also known as the “City of Angels,” is immense with skyscrapers everywhere – many of which were architecturally very interesting.
 The city is also famous for its old section with the Grand Palace and other wats, which are Buddhist temples.I did not have time on this trip to visit these religious shrines.

The day that we took the Skytrain to go shopping, I saw one of the largest malls called Siam Square and we found the Jim Thompson Silk Store where I spent my share of bahts on Christmas gifts.


anne marie in philly said...

beautiful city, david. I can always pick you out in the crowd!

David Oliver said...

Reading this, I thought much about my daughter-in-law who is Thai. She almost never mentions Thailand or Bangkok but I know she misses it. She did go back for an extended visit in March/April and the smiles on her face in the photos she sent home said everything.

Some of what you said I did not know. I knew about the food and traffic. Once when the "kids" were coming home I fixed some snack foods as hot as I could eat them. She said she couldn't tell they were hot all. So I found some XXX rated hot sauce. I would not so much as put a dab on my finger and touch it to my tongue. She said it was very good.

Anonymous said...

I think that was a fabulous trip! While I've never had much of a desire to visit Southeast Asia (the UK and Scandinavia hold much more sway over me), if someone were to pay my way, I'd be there in a heartbeat! This looks like a great trip, even though it was business in nature. Obviously you got enough time to see more of the city than just the hotel.

Peace <3

David Jeffreys said...

That is not too difficult, since I am always the tallest one, which is especially true in an asian country.