Freshly cut orchids in my room, fresh flowers on the room service tray, white handkerchiefs in the conference bathrooms instead of paper towels, and a coffee maid to brew you a fresh cup of coffee from beans. These are a few awesome offerings here at this relatively inexpensive hotel. Nestled in the centre of the hustle and bustle of the Armari neighbourhood of Bangkok, the Armari Watergate Hotel clearly capitalizes on the cheap labour Thailand offers. There is a beautiful Thai princess that greets you as you exit the elevator or about to enter the dining room with that welcoming genuflect. Further, there is a girl or a boy at every corner to greet you in like fashion and to direct you just in case you take the wrong turn. Managers (some who seem to be western) are just as caring, escorting you out of elevators, inquiring about your meal at breakfast or lunch or just asking you how you are enjoying your stay.
(Sidebar) Everyone here is so small and cute, like figurines to make a great collection.
So today I went for a walk as I insisted I must see even the street on which I am living for the duration of my time here. I stepped out into the busy street, busy with cars, tuck-tucks and people. (I will ride in my tuck tuck tomorrow). There are just as many tuck tuck taxis as they are car taxis, but what was amazing was the taxi bike! Yes like the tuck tuck, you can hop onto a motor bike and get to your destination in no time. This makes a lot of sense as the city is plagued with traffic congestion. If I am brave enough I may even take the bike when I next need a taxi. I am sure that will break 40 UN safety rules.
Anyways, story! So as I stepped out of the hotel and I was swiftly offered a tuck tuck taxi by this man who I assumed was the owner. I said no, no-no, I am going walking. Then he pulls me aside and offered pretty girl, and before I could process the offer he whipped out a pocket catalogue of nice girls for me to purchase. Now me neva buy Pum Pum yet from I born so this was wrong for me in several ways. Anyway I again said no-no, belying my curiosity as I whisked myself away to my planned pure and chaste walk free from iniquity.
For the first time I was walking in down town. The civic planners seem to make the best use of the space considering their population. Buildings go up high to accommodate multiple stores, road are broad and organized in one ways and there is an overhead crossing at ever major intersection. You smell the drain all through the walk on the streets. Some places, while not dirty, seemed unkempt and old. However , it was just as fascinating to look at, especially to see the alleys that run off the main road and how the people make use of them with all kinds of shops.
The sidewalks were apparently made broad enough to accommodate sellers as they peddle their wares on nice appointed shelves as far as the eyes can see. This is where you see cheapness, not to mention the knock off everything, Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Armani, you name it them have it. From movies to handbags to blackberry phone, dem have it. Now when you talk about bargain galore, US$3 bag, US$3-US$4 shoes, US$3 TShirt, US$5 shirt, 4 socks for US$1, all of this on the road side, and good quality stuff too. I just stop at one point because it was just too much to digest and as I never come here to come shop and bankrupt myself like I did once a month last year, or mek Jamaica immigration harass me like the last time. But it was genuinely too much. So Friday I may go pickup a ting or two but I will not be sucked into shopping.
Oh mi neva tell unu bout the breakfast. Fried rice, noodles, chop suey, chicken soup and some wholeep a Thai things I can pronounce were on the buffet. This was good for me the first day cause I never eat dinner cause a the jet lag and I man did hungry bad in the morning. So I got some chicken and rice the morning and “I mash dung dat” or as my Belizian friend would say “I connek up dat – one time”. Of course they also had western and Indian breakfast items which I had the following day. The food is amazing, when you have so many options to choose from.
I still waiting for Poy and Sypo, my two Thai friends to call me or come look for me.
Anyways, lata again wi talk.
The Pink Ambassador