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    Tropical Heat Tour: Thailand Part 7

    Tuesday, August 7, 2012
    Bangkok, Thailand

    Shitake Mushrooms and Glass Noodles at May Kaidee's in Banglamphu, Bangkok, Thailand.

    An alley scene in Chinatown, Bangkok, Thailand.

    Further down the alley in Chinatown, Bangkok, Thailand.

    After hiding out from the sun inside the Nat 2 lobby all day, I headed out around sunset for my second crack at photographing Chinatown. That crappy feeling of fatigue came over me during the half-mile walk over to Wat Phra Kaew, where I was going to catch bus number 1, so I sat down for a rest and watched a bit of tweaked humanity pass by. Finally arriving at the bus stop a bit later, I sat on a grassy lawn and waited for a short while, even though the sign listed every bus except the number 1. Then I saw a number 1 pass by in the opposite direction, and figured out it must use the whole Wat Phra Kaew complex as its turn-around point.

    Entering the main drag, Thanon Yaowarat, in Chinatown, Bangkok, Thailand.

    A food stall on Thanon Yaowarat, in Chinatown, Bangkok, Thailand.

    Bright, colorful signs on Thanon Yaowarat in Chinatown, Bangkok, Thailand.

    So, I crossed the street and caught the next number 1 that came by. But, this one was a smaller yellow bus instead of the usual big red version, which really made me hope that it took the same route. I asked the fare collector if it went to Chinatown, but I couldn’t really interpret if she meant yes or no. The driver-with-a-deathwish constantly alternated between hammering down on the gas pedal, then slamming on the brakes a second later, repeating this process every few seconds–throwing us passengers to and fro like bumper cars inside a hurricane. All this while wildly tailgating every motorcycle, car, and bus that came into his path. As we reached what looked like Chinatown, the fare collector told me to get off, so I did.

    Bright, colorful shopfronts on Thanon Yaowarat in Chinatown, Bangkok, Thailand.

    Bright, colorful signs on Thanon Yaowarat in Chinatown, Bangkok, Thailand.

    Carnivores rejoice! A meat cart serves up fresh flesh on Thanon Yaowarat in Chinatown, Bangkok, Thailand.

    After I walked around a bit, I saw an alley with some bright Chinese signs, so I headed up into it. The further I proceeded, the more crowded it got, until I entered the main drag, Thanon Yaowarat, which is the main road of the Chinatown district. A crazy amount of people sat at sidewalk tables and ate dinner while others milled about, shooting photos and shopping. The area is completely packed with restaurants, food stalls and shops selling stuff like souvenirs, lottery tickets, hardware and gold. This vibrant place really re-energized me, and I had a great time walking around shooting photos and video.

    There's plenty of hustle and bustle on Thanon Yaowarat in Chinatown, Bangkok, Thailand.

    A fat-ass cheese baguette in Banglamphu, Bangkok, Thailand.

    I encountered one of those guys who marches about, singing into a mic plugged into an amp strapped to his stomach with canned music blaring. I got a couple of shorts clips of him, but, unfortunately, both times, he happened to stop singing right when he passed by me. Once I had my fill of Chinatown, I took bus number 1 back to Banglamphu and munched on another one of those big baguette sandwiches with cheese and veggies, which only cost $2.00. It’s pretty crazy that a foot long sandwich at Subway back home costs $5.00, and it’s even a bit smaller.

    Roll over photos for captions.
    Words and photos ©2012 Arcane Candy.

    One response to “Tropical Heat Tour: Thailand Part 7”

    1. morger says:

      reading all that made my stomach growl for some reason.

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