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    Tropical Storm Tour: Thailand Part 39

    Wednesday, July 29, 2015
    Bangkok, Thailand

    The Bamboo Pub on Sukhumvit Soi 3 in Bangkok, Thailand.
    The Bamboo Pub on Sukhumvit Soi 3 in Bangkok, Thailand.

    After reading the news, and writing and Photoshopping for my travel journal all afternoon, I jumped on a bus number 15 for Siam and scored shotgun for the second or third time ever, which was nice, because I could actually see where I was going and enjoy all of the chaos and urban eye candy that Bangkok has to offer. Bailing at the jam-packed Siam, I boarded a SkyTrain and rode it one stop away to Chit Lom. My plan was to take a stroll down Thanon Sukhumvit to shoot some photos and find a good place to eat.

    A view down Sukhumvit Soi 3/1 in Bangkok, Thailand.
    A view down Sukhumvit Soi 3/1 in Bangkok, Thailand.

    After walking for a couple of blocks, I figured out that I needed to get back on the SkyTrain and ride it a bit further. Disembarking at Nana, I descended down into the steamy back lanes, where I happily started clicking away at a bunch of photogenic illuminated signs for various Middle Eastern restaurants and shops–complete with the always aesthetically pleasing Arabic lettering. A little while into my foray, I was taken aback when a young 20-something Guido-looking thug stepped in front of me and told me I had to delete the photos I had just taken of his shop.

    The always awesome Arabic lettering as seen on a couple of signs on Sukhumvit Soi 3/1 in Bangkok, Thailand.
    The always awesome Arabic lettering as seen on a couple of signs on Sukhumvit Soi 3/1 in Bangkok, Thailand.

    Just to avoid arguing or fighting with the guy and possibly ending up in jail, the hospital or the morgue, I deleted the photos. He even made me click through several photos forward and backward to see if I’d taken any more. Then I just walked off. I’d agree that if I was inside his shop that he could tell me not to shoot photos, but not out in the middle of the lane. That’s a public place! The crazy thing was there were a ton of tourists milling around; it was not a dark, deserted alley. A lot of questions floated around in my head. Is it his job to stand out there and lure in customers and / or force the few shutterbugs who pass by occasionally to delete their photos? What happens when a confrontational type refuses to delete? Does it get physical?

    Nasir Al Masri Restaurant on Sukhumvit Soi 3/1 in Bangkok, Thailand.
    Nasir Al Masri Restaurant on Sukhumvit Soi 3/1 in Bangkok, Thailand.

    A view down Sukhumvit Soi 3/1 in Bangkok, Thailand.
    A view down Sukhumvit Soi 3/1 in Bangkok, Thailand.

    Someone should organize a flash mob of 50 people to show up in front of his shop and shoot photos of it all at the same time. What would Mr. Tough Guy do then? A little while later, I walked back by the shop to see what they sold and what could possibly be so top secret about it. As far as I could tell, all they had on offer was designer handbags–probably counterfeit ones. If Mr. Tough Guy is so worried about his shop being photographed, he should throw one of those fumigation circus tents over it. Better yet, if he is selling counterfeit goods, I hope the cops shut it down! I’ve seen it happen before in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

    A food stall selling mango and sticky rice on Sukhumvit Soi 38 in Bangkok, Thailand.
    A food stall selling mango and sticky rice on Sukhumvit Soi 38 in Bangkok, Thailand.

    Proceeding further down Sukhumvit, I passed by numerous restaurants that seemed like they’d be good, but they were too expensive. I wasn’t in the mood to fork over 150 baht for an a la carte item, when I could get more and much better food at May Kaidee’s for only 100 baht. After trudging for a good couple of miles, my feet and legs started to get fatigued. So, I jumped on a random bus and rode it a bit further to Sukhumvit Soi 38, where I enjoyed a plate of Pad Thai courtesy of the super-heated, fireball-shooting wok of Mr. Dum, followed by a styrofoam tray full of the always yummy mango and sticky rice. One of the biggest pieces of mango was way too stiff to be cut, let alone eaten, so I returned it to the lady for a replacement. She just cut a couple of tiny slices off the side of it and gave those back to me with no replacement, which I thought was kind of greedy of her, yet funny at the same time.

    Mango and sticky rice on Sukhumvit Soi 38 in Bangkok, Thailand.
    Mango and sticky rice on Sukhumvit Soi 38 in Bangkok, Thailand.

    I was stoked I made my way back onto the covered SkyTrain platform just in time to miss a torrential downpour that suddenly dumped a crap ton of water upon everyone and everything. Down on the street at Siam, a crazy amount of people were waiting for buses. Luckily, number 15 showed up pretty soon, but it was completely stuffed full, which was surprising considering it was 10:30 pm. Luckily, I had bought an umbrella from a sidewalk vendor on Sukhumvit, which allowed me to stay dry during my trek to Thanon Rambuttri to get a fruit shake and some more mango and sticky rice before I headed back to my room.

    A unusually thick crowd at 10:30 pm waits for various buses at Siam in Bangkok, Thailand.
    A unusually thick crowd at 10:30 pm waits for various buses at Siam in Bangkok, Thailand.

    Words and photos ©2015 Arcane Candy.

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