My Love For Pattaya

IMG_1013Lets face it, no one ever left home to find the ordinary.  No one ever packed a bag and went off in search of the everyday, the common place.

Because the whole idea of travel is to find new experiences.  To discover something different, exciting, special, in our world and in ourself.

Explore a new city, discover that you are photographer, eat something that you cant pronounce.  Embrace a local custom.

IMG_0734Thailand!  Officially the Kingdom of Thailand formerly known as Siam is a country at the center of the Indochina peninsula in Southeast Asia. It is bordered to the north by Burma and Laos, to he east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, and to the west by the Andaman Sea and the southern extremity of Burma (Not Burma Camp on the 37 Road in Accra). Thailand is the world’s 51st-largest country. It is the 20th-most populous country in the world, with around 66 million people.

I am sure you occasionally have memories of the “Chinese and Indian films” you watched when you were younger.  It was either fight fight fight with key features of snakes and bhuddas or love love love with key features of hand and head gestures with singing and dancing. Well!  I was too young to keep up with the subtitles so I was only watching not listening or reading.

DSC_0121Anyway, we arrived in Bangkok at 1 am on Thursday 23rd July 2015.  The Capital and largest city in Thailand is Bangkok, which is Thailand’s political, commercial, industrial, and cultural hub.

Day 1:  I will name this one 3 hotels in 2 hours. A tiring yet hilarious night.

We made it out of the airport at 2 am with Noom the prearranged driver waiting with a sign that said Delali.

Noom is going to be our driver for the entire 5 days we spend in Thailand.  He barely understands us when we speak and his answer to most things is Yes Sir. Even when he clearly didn’t hear or understand us. It took us hours to get him to understand that he doesn’t have to refer to us as Sir but Ma’am.  He occasionally remembered and when he did, we would cheer him on.  The next picture is one of Michelle and Noom.

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We arrived at our hotel at nearly 3 am but they wouldn’t allow us to do an early check in and there were no rooms available so we ordered food and ate in the lobby whilst the receptionist called around nearby hotels where we could sleep for 6 hours or so before coming back to the Hilton Hotel.  I must add that their customer service is pretty nice 🙂

They have found a hotel, the Radisson Blu with room availability, Noom is gone so we jumped in a different taxi and headed there.  On our way, we heard a screeching noise.  Good thing the hot pink taxi driver stopped to look. It was my hand luggage which fell out of the boot. Good thing is is a hard case bag. It had my lap top, camera and lenses, etc…my heart!  At that very moment I thought to myself, these people are just like some Ghanaian Taxi drivers.  He was trying to drive off with his boot open and I told him to close the boot! It had 2 suitcases and my hand luggage. He said no it’s fine. I insisted and tried to slam the boot closed myself but clearly it had a problem which he hasn’t fixed.  Noom left us as soon as he dropped us at the Hilton Hotel.  We didn’t foresee the night’s adventure.  I could have slapped this driver! I was so irritated.

We got to the hotel which was just round the corner and he had the nerve to want to charge us 50 baht more than we originally agreed on. He must be on crack. After dropping my bag? Imagine if there was speeding vehicles behind us!  Before Delali would even think of giving him 150 baht I made him well aware that is was the 100 baht he initially quoted and that’s it. The nerve!

DSC_0246So we are at hotel 2 for the night and guess what!  We were supposed to go to Radisson Blu Suites not Radisson Blu Hotel. Good thing that’s just another 10 minutes away. On the way in and out of the hotels I noticed that little gods were everywhere with opened drinks with straws and snacks in front of them.  No questions asked.  Moving on swiftly!

Out again with our luggage. We find a giggling taxi driver who quotes 150 baht and we agreed.  This was a wake up ride.  We laughed all the way to the hotel.  I don’t know how I can describe this experience.  During the entire drive, he was making noises. Strange noises.  Initially we thought that was weird but after a while we just burst out laughing uncontrollably and he didn’t find it strange at all. He carried on!

Do you remember the noise they made in karate movies when we were younger? “Phew ….phew phew….. He made that all the way and when he drove over a pot hole, he made another kind of noise.  His car brakes were not very good so when he tried to hold the brakes, that also came with another lip sound effect. We didn’t see all this coming when we were sitting in the car. Thank God he got us there safely. On arrival we gave him a round of applause whilst still laughing uncontrollably. We paid him 50 baht extra for the entertainment forgetting our lives were at risk with those failing brakes. Well as you know from our Dubai trip, we love roller coaster and fun rides!  He was overwhelmed and kept thanking us. Still giggling, back into his car he went.

It’s a  4:30 am and we have finally gotten a place to lay our heads for just a few hours before you go back to our originally booked hotel.  It’s going to be a short one before we have to wake up again.

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We were welcome into our original hotel at 2 pm with “The Cookie”.

Isn’t that nice of them?  The delicious cookie is a way of saying welcome to the Double Tree By Hilton in Bangkok.  We only got one each though 😦

If you wanted more, you must buy them in a tin full of cookies 🙂

Soon after, we were off to the Mall and when we got back, Michelle and Delali went for a massage and food and drinks at a pub opposite the hotel in the company of many English and Australian People.

I in turn succumbed to that pillow in my hotel room that spelt Sweet Dreams.

Day 2:  It took us one hour and 40 minutes to drive from the hotel to the pier of Damnoen Saduak floating market where we would experience the floating market, the tour of the temple and an elephant ride.

A floating market is a market where goods are sold from boats. Originating in times and places where water transport played an important role in daily life, most floating markets operating today mainly serve as tourist attractions, and are chiefly found in Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam.

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Damnoen Saduak Floating Market is a notable floating market in Ratchaburi, Thailand, and a major tourist destination.

The floating market at Damnoen Saduak is the old traditional way of selling vegetables, fruits,etc. from a small boat. Produce sold includes Malacca grape, Chinese grapefruit, mangoes, bananas, and coconut. There is one famous fruit called as star fruit.

The sellers gather at 3:00 and come back at 11:00.

This is also the costliest market.  A woman was trying to charge me 950 Baht for a pair of trousers which I ended up paying 250 Baht for!  Thank God we have bargaining skills from Africa.

Everything was over priced!

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I was enjoying the boat ride bargaining until we got to the snakes!  That ruined it for me for the next 20 minutes or so.

I HATE REPTILES!!!!

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From there we went to the temple were we got off the boat to have a short site seeing of their places of worship.

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From there we got back into the boat to the Elephant Village were we got a walk around the village sitting on elephants.

At first I was scared but I quickly got comfortable but not so comfortable with the smell.

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It was exhausting after a while especially under the heat so soon we made our way back to our hotel were we went for a swim on the roof top, had dinner on the balcony and went for full body massages and said good night.

It is our last night in Bangkok with great anticipation of our trip to Pattaya in the morning.

Noom is from Pattaya and every chance he gets, he can’t help but tell us about how wonderful Pattaya is and it being the best city in Thailand.

Lets see what Pattaya has in stock for us.

Day 3: Its 12 noon and Noom is ready to take us to Pattaya, 2 hours away.

First stopping at the Saithip Butterfy Garden where Delali looked forward to seeing beautiful butterflies.  Unfortunately, when we got there, we were told they are closed because it wasn’t the Butterfly season.  We then drove on to the Sriracha Tiger Zoo.

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We got to feed a cub.

Isn’t that cute?

After the Tiger show, we went to see the crocodile show.  Can you believe Michelle and Delali went to take photos attempting to sit on top of crocodiles?

Now that wasn’t anything I wanted to participate in.  Feeding a hungry cub was the closest I was willing to get to the wild life.

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Then there was the elephant show.  I actually watched elephants play basket ball.  Can you believe that???  Well if you follow me on Instagram you would has seen the video.

PATTAYA here we come!!!  It is a city in Thailand, a beach resort popular with tourists and expatriates. It is on the east coast of the Gulf of Thailand, about 100 kilometres (62 mi) southeast of Bangkok within, but not part of, Amphoe Bang Lamung in the province of Chonburi.

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Before I say anything else, let me tell you one thing!  Our hotel is amazing!!!

The view from my room is amazing, the entire hotel looks amazing!!!!

I can’t even think of any word besides Amazing!

Every moment here is just Amazing!!!

In 2 hours we are meeting on the roof top bar and restaurant for dinner and drinks before we make an attempt to attend the ping pong show.

Don’t judge us.  We heard it is pretty awesome here. Ha ha ha

And I have never seen these many lady boys in my life!!!

They are everywhere!!!!!!!!

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In the middle of our meal came a storm.  It rained so heavily.  We moved inside the restaurant and watched the city get soaked.  I guess no ping pong show on our only night in Pattaya.

At least we get to fully enjoy our beds with a full night of sleep with the ocean view.

On the last day in Pattaya, it is going to be mainly swimming in the infinity pool and massage with a little bit of shopping in the 6 storey mall which make the first 6 floors of our hotel.  How convenient!

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This Was A Journey That Leads To Memories We Could Have Forever!

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