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What do you do when it's 20 degrees for so long?
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Question What do you do when it's 20 degrees for so long? - January 7, 2010, 10:59 AM

Well, in my case, I started browsing travel websites. I bought a plane ticket, got my visa a leasurly 15 hours before departure, packed my moto gear, and after 25 (!) hours of travel time, I am now sweating my ass off in 90 degree weather.

Not that everything went without a hitch. My first flight was an emergency landing. I was awoken by the pilot announcement that we are losing hydrolic pressure to the wing flaps but "it's not that bad yet". Sweet.




Landing was a little rought but we made it and I finally arrived in Bangkok on the 2nd. To begin the trip, I have been enjoying Bangkok via taxi, tuk-tuk, motorcycle taxi, and my own 150cc rental. If you find track days getting expensive, come here and take some motorcycle taxi rides. It's a thrill like no other. Actually, even regular car taxis sometimes haul ass. It's the only place where I considered putting on a seatbelt in a taxi.

Anyway... this is my little trip report...

Bangkok is pretty cool. Imagine a cross between 5th Avenue and MLK Blvd - extreme weath intertwined with extreme poverty. You have a mix of everything to fit your budget and expectations. There is no shortage of nighclubs with $30 covers and there is no shortage of 'street discos' serving $1 beers. After the official club closings at 2am, you see regular street vendors blasting music and serving alcohol till ?am... There is no open container law in Bangkok as far as I can tell.




Street food is generally pretty good. Thai street dishes are waaay too spicy for my taste. Variety is awesome. Fresh squeezed juices, sliced fruit, and all sorts of grilled meats are sold everywhere for cheap.




I am trying to get my fill of shark fin soup and bird's nest soup. Decent pricing. Even some street vendors in Chinatown sell shark fin soup and it is actually pretty good.




All of Thailand is full of massage places. Convenient way to relax after a long day of doing nothing.




Going back to street vendors and food... here is how back alleys look behind all those night markets... Food for thought when you see some yummy dish at some random stall. Bangkok sanitation standards are questionable to say the least.




Bangkok police bike...



Bangkok has an elaborate canal system, but it is slowly being filled in to make more room for real estate.




Thailand may be 99% Buddhist, but that doesn't seem to stop them from celebrating Christmas. Actually, as I write this, it is Jan 8th and there are still Christmas greetings and decorations around. This one is from Emporium, a really swanky mall full of designer shops. I have yet to see such a high end mall in the USA... Every floor here is filled with Fendi, Farragamo, Hermes, Versace, Chanel, etc...




People drinking dancing and hanging out is the standard here on the streets. Also standard; a gazzilion stray dogs that don't even blink when you step over them on the way out of 7 Eleven.





Thailand is full of big budda statues. They are all very important for one reason or another. And they are all surrounded by a million husslers trying to sell you junk.






If I look excited in this photo it's by accident. All these temples and ruins are about the same.




Photo below is from Chiang Mai - a smaller and slower version of Bangkok. Things are a little more relaxed and rules are even less stringent. You can drink a beer, feed elephants fruit, and get chatted up by hookers all without ever leaving your seat.





Chiang Mai seems alright, but there is way too many budget/hostel hippie types here.

Finally, take a look at my new ride in this region. It is Kawasaki ER6n, a 650cc twin with ABS brakes. *Very* nice bike. I wasn't expecting much but I really like it. Good power delivery and good feedback.







The rental place had no qualms about letting me take it for a spin in center city without signing anything, leaving anything at their shop, and with no gear whatsoever. In Thailand, money talks and everything else is secondary. I generally like this laisse faire attitude.

More to come as I process more photos from rides, etc...
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January 7, 2010, 11:00 AM

AWESOME!!!!
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January 7, 2010, 11:04 AM

Definition of adventure right there! Do you speak the language? Any communication barriers?




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January 7, 2010, 11:08 AM

i dare you to ride the kawi back home the long way. looking forward to more pics!


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January 7, 2010, 11:09 AM

<--------------------sooooooooooooooooooooo jelly!


Most excellent write up and great pics!


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January 7, 2010, 11:11 AM

WOW what an awesome trip!





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January 7, 2010, 11:12 AM

subscribed


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January 7, 2010, 11:13 AM

a good friend of mine is assigned to bangkok right now. He keeps trying to get us to visit.

very cool!


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January 7, 2010, 11:13 AM



good stuff!!


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Will pay to see this
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January 7, 2010, 11:20 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by sk8nsanta View Post
Do you speak the language? Any communication barriers?
I don't speak Thai but my finger pointing skills are top notch, if I may say so myself.

Their street address system is screwed up just like in other asian countries and it sucks. On top of that, roman alphabet names are just phonetic versions of real Thai names. On top of that, a good number of taxi/tuk-tuk drivers are illiterate. It takes a couple of tries, and they themselves will ask random bystanders where the actual destination is if they are not familiar with the street as will I...
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January 7, 2010, 11:20 AM

Very nice trip report! .. Did you get to meet any trans gender hookers? I hear they are a lot there


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January 7, 2010, 11:21 AM

damn dude, good for you. i love traveling and am watering at the mouth looking at your pics. please share more.
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January 7, 2010, 11:22 AM

thx for the trip report!
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January 7, 2010, 11:27 AM

THAT IS AWESOME!!!

Very jealous!! More pics please!


God Speed Jeff! You'll never be forgotten.

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January 7, 2010, 11:42 AM

Damn good report Wit... was this a planed trip? About how much did this cost and total time there?


ps: nissan and kawasaki...my 2 favorite brands...



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