Thailand and China Friendship Pavilion

Our four week house sit in the outskirts of Bangkok is certainly living up to our expectations. We are getting a chance to experience what we would term “normal” day to day living as an expat.

New Glasses for Karen
When there is no home base to return to you are faced with the unique opportunity of acquiring the items that most people take for granted as relatively easy to do. Think about this though. Getting your eyes tested for new prescription glasses and you, the customer, do not speak a word of Thai. While the technician testing you only knows about six English words. And honestly, you are not sure he actually knows what the words mean.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not being critical of the people working in the shop. We show up in a shop where all their customers are locals, the challenge is all on us. It was a fun and entertaining experience. All the staff made every effort to communicate with us and in the end I think it was a successful effort. Though the final test will come when the glasses arrive and we see if Karen can see any better with the finished results.

New Passports
We planned the renewal of our passports while we were here in Bangkok. The Canadian Government website stated that once paperwork was submitted your new passports would be available for pick up in 20 days. I am not sure if that is supposed to be business days or calendar days, but we arrived in Bangkok on July 25 and went straight to the Canadian Embassy to submit the applications and assorted paperwork, and $280CDN each. We both had a brand spanking new passport in our hands 22 days later.

I can be quick to be critical when people do not do their jobs properly, so it behooves me to also wave the flag when an agency and it’s people deliver exactly what they are supposed to. The security procedures at the Embassy are fairly stream lined and the staff behind the counters know their jobs and were excellent at making sure that everything was in order and the processing of the passports went off without a hitch. Thank you to the Passport Services staff at the Canadian Embassy in Bangkok.

The trips into the Embassy also allowed us to experience using Uber and Grab in Bangkok. As we are located about 17km from the nearest metro train station we called upon Grab and Uber to get us to the station. The first thing we discovered was they are nowhere near as quick as we experienced in Malaysia. The other surprise for us was that the taxi was cheaper than either Uber or Grab. 180Baht for a taxi and between 210 and 360Baht for Uber/Grab. In fairness the slower service is partly attributed to where we are located.

Monitor Lizards
While walking around Lumpini Park in Bangkok we saw several monitor lizards. This one was the largest we saw, over 2 metres in length. When it came out of the water right by us I was amazed at the size of it’s belly. The cat, see insert, was keeping a very close eye on the lizard as it walked by.

After getting our passports we spent the day walking around Lumpini Park then retreating into Siam Paragon Mall to escape the heat. It was nice to be able to walk under the trees in Lumpini Park. Hundreds of Thais were out and about enjoying the park and the lizards and cats provided some good entertainment.

Newspaper Delivery
As we were crossing over the pedestrian overpass to Lumpini Park I spotted this lady handing out newspapers. She had a great routine with the drivers of both bikes and cars, handing off the papers without the vehicles even stopping.
Rain at Siam Paragon
Watching the staff run out and deploy this walkway between these two high end malls was very entertaintaing. I thought it was a bit much, but then Karen reminded me that the customers here would expect this as there were Maserati and Rolls Royce dealerships inside.

However the vast majority of our time has been spent being homebodies with two very entertaining miniature Dachshunds. Taking them for a couple of walks a day and cringing every time they tear out the door to bark at some poor soul passing by.

Monitor Lizard at the house
Rufus was keenly interested in this little monitor lizard that stopped by the house. We were very glad the doors were closed when we had this visitor.
Chilling with Louie
There is something very comforting about chilling out with a dog. Louie is more than happy to use us as a pillow. So long as he can see out the window.

Loving the life of relaxing in suburban Bangkok.

Welcome to our travel blog. Have you ever wondered what it would be like to say, "I'm out of here?" Well we did, and in 2013 we made it a reality. We sold or gave away all of our possessions other than what fit in our luggage and we set off on an endless adventure. Part of our goal is to share our experiences with others and hopefully provide some information, motivation, or just a moments escape. The general idea was to look for a place that would be ideal to settle down in. However in the meantime it is about experiencing life in different countries amongst different cultures and learning how to understand and appreciate each other. A large part of our time is spent housesitting which provides an excellent opportunity to experience more of the "normal" neighbourhoods as opposed to the tourist locales. Though we make sure to enjoy those as well. So through plenty of photographs and a running commentary come and share with us our life on the road.

1 comment on “Bangkok House Sitting

  1. Bryce Sherman

    Great read! Love the pics of Karen with the glasses on

    Thank you, Bryce Sherman

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: