Tag Archives: Thailand

One Night in Bangkok, Part II.

My trip to Thailand coincided not only with the red shirt revolution, but with the eruption of a volcano in Iceland. Not a big deal, really, unless you were in Iceland. Or—thanks to the large sheet of ash filling the skies—Europe, in general. Or anywhere in the world that Europeans may travel, including countries whose internal issues were causing Western embassies to send out warnings such as, “Do not go to [Thailand],” or “If you are in [Thailand], leave [Thailand].” One of these countries? Thailand.

This is a long way of saying that Bangkok’s hotels were full of Europeans who were, simply put, stuck. Suvarnabhumi (Bangkok’s airport) had people living on its floors, all exhausted, all wanting to go home. I learned this from a new English friend of mine, who had been stranded in Bangkok for several days. Truth be told, I don’t remember his name. Another confession (or two): I befriended him because he spoke English and had a working laptop. (Although my hotel was proficient at taking me to a pharmacy in the middle of the night, their public computers were less than helpful.)

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One Night in Bangkok, Part I.

For those following the entire story, you’ll know that violent protests cut Thailand out of the itinerary for our southeast Asia trip. Nearly. My original plans awarded me one night in Bangkok. A night that, unfortunately, I’ll never forget. It’s tough to say what caused the food sickness, but math dictates that it was either the halo-halo from the American-style fast food joint or the sisig (pictured below) from a restaurant in Puerto Princesa owned, against the odds, by a couple from Arizona.

It started on the flight to Bangkok. After boarding, I sat down next to a chatty Filipina woman, and began to feel nauseous. I fled to the plane lavatory just as she announced to me that she was an evangelical Christian. Curled over in the tiny room—as we started our descent—I had visions of my body being jerked upwards with turbulence while simultaneously feeling horrible at the timing of my departure. I didn’t want my friend to think I was avoiding her because she was a Christian. With nothing accomplished in the loo, I headed to my seat to buckle myself in and apologize for leaving mid-conversation. “My stomach hurts,” I explained.

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