“A Whirlwind Visit…So Far…”

First of all, I think me and my girlfriends will be at Ad Makers tonight, or somewhere around the Langsuan area. So, if you see me in a brown shirt that says, “Shake your Buddha”, please say hello. 🙂

It’s been a whirlwind visit home so far, having landed here on Thursday. Indeed, this is the shortest visit home for me, but I’ve done quite a lot already in a few days, and eat even more so! My maid/nanny keeps bringing me things to eat. LOL.

Friday. Shopping That Ends All Shopping.

For bargain shoppers like myself, THE destination to be is Soi Lalaisap, literally means “melt your wealth street”. Soi Lalaisap situates in Bangkok’s financial district on Silom road. It’s an alley way next to the Bangkok Bank building. The street is NOT closed to traffic although it looks that way. Occasionally, some brave car will slowly ease through all the crowd storming the area during lunch hours.

Soi Lalaisap comes to life around 10:30 a.m. and is already filling up around 11. By 2 p.m. some smaller shops would already close down for the day.

It does get seriously packed down in Lalai Sap, folks. So be warned of that. Amazingly, I could count the amount of foreigners trekking through the area with my hands. Then again, this is not the area that sells touristy stuff, but everyday things.
From fruit stands, food stalls, to imported Hong Kong pantsuits to diamond jewelry. This place has it all. And for great bargaining prices.

This little road leads into an even more wider shopping areas called the Trinity buildings. From non-airconditioned stalls under a huge tent to the air-conditioned upstairs AND downstair shops of Trinity, this area in Bangkok is truly a shopper’s heaven. Especially if you know how to haggle.

Let’s put it this way. During the 3.5 hours we were out there, I spent more or less about $100 that day down in Lalai Sap. And here’s the list of my loot:

2 beautifully cut pantsuits imported from Hong Kong
1 knitted sweater
1 sun dress
1 pair of heeled sandals
3 very unique hair accessories — as in I haven’t seen these in the US
Lunch of rice and fried pork and a bottle of green tea

I could’ve done a lot more damaged if my mom went with me, by the way. Being just me and my girlfriends, we tend to go a little easier on the bargaining. My mom haggles like nobody else, I tell ya.

Our gang returned home to my house around 3 p.m. We took a breather, and off we went to Central Department Store for some more shopping. Hahah!

Saturday – The Wedding Unlike Any Others

Now, THAT’s a whole entry to itself since their wedding was a bit unconventional for Thais. So, I’ll save the details for my next entry.

Sunday – Tsunami? What Tsunami!

My father and I peeled ourselves out of our beds and shuffled onto the first flight to Phuket in order to catch up with the architects down in Khao Lak area in Phang-Nga province. The finalists of the tsunami memorial design competition had been in Khao Lak since Saturday. I tagged along with the group the entire day, occasionally helped out with translation duty, and had a grand time.

This day too merits its own entry. Besides, I will have photos to go with it. But let me just say this. I wouldn’t have known the tsunami destroyed this area just over a year ago. You couldn’t tell! The rebuild has been incredible. But as someone said, tourism is all they’ve got around here. If they don’t bounce back quickly, they lose their livelihood.

So, there you go folks. A preview of what to come from the OakMonster’s short time on her home turf. See you guys back stateside!

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