Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Thailand trip: 130407 to 160407

April 13 to 16 is one of the hottest day in Thailand. It is also when they celebrate their New Year, or Songkran. For the uninitiated, Songkran is also known as their Water Festival, cos the whole country literally throw water anywhere, at anyone.

I had my first trip to Thailand during the past weekend, with Cons and Ivy. We did not know that it was their New Year when we booked the flight for that day. The trip, other than the heat, turned out really fulfilling, in terms of the shopping conquests that we did. There were some very funny incidents on the way though, hah!

First day, we checked into the Singapore Budget Terminal. It was really built on a budget expenditure. The hall looks something right out of the expo hall, bare and sparsely furnished.

The flight there was very smooth and I got my first taste of flying. Got a little sweaty palms but other than that it was a very calming and rather nice flight there. A little side track here, I seriously think Tiger Airway need to find better looking air stewardesses...

2 hours later, we landed at the new and spanking Suvarnabhumi Airport. Describing it as huge is just an understatement! The landing strips for airplanes to take off and land are so wide that I don even know where the starting and ending points were!

Next, to get a cab to our hotel. There were queues of taxis outside waiting and there were those cabbies who were trying to push their limousine cabs to us. We were surrounded by a couple of men who were trying to push their limousines to us. Initial offer: 800 baht. We walked away and they lowered to 700 baht. We walked further and they decided we were too smart for their tactics and left us alone. In the end, we hopped onto one that offer to bring us to Baiyoke Suite Hotel at 400 baht, including service charge that his agent of some sort charge of 50 baht.

A little side note here, Baiyoke hotel is cheap and good, but don be fooled by the classy pictures. The room is huge, it has a living room for watching TV and a sleeping quarters. My few complains about the place was the super cold aircon which does not seem to be adjustable in its temperature and the placement of the TV, which was in the living room and we were not able to watch it while lying on bed.

Anyway, we settled down and set out for shopping! First stop, Maboonkong (MBK) shopping center! Again, describing it huge was super understatement. One can literally get lost in the center.

There were bridges linking to the shopping center and it was very accessible. Walking there from the train station was very convenient but the weather was terribly hot. Super hot and dry.

Anyway, once inside, we went in search for food. I found my first Dunkin' Donuts. I tell ya, their blueberry donuts were the best!

Cons and Ivy bought some munchkins.

So after fulfilling our tummies, we prowled around looking for bargains. We went inside Wacoal, in search for lingeries, being the sensual females that we are. Heh.

I was browsing around, trying to search for a perfect bra. Then, a salesgirl came over and asked me, "Miss, want to try T-shirt bra?"

I thought why not. So I went over and she showed me the shelf. She asked for my size and I said, "B80."

She went, in very halting English, "No no! No B80! You E cup!"

I almost choked and Cons who happened to be beside me burst out laughing!

"No no! I no E cup! I C cup at most!"

She was rather indignant about it and insisted, "No! You E Cup! You E75" Then she walked over and put a bra over my breasts and squeezed my breasts!

She squeezed my breasts!!! She actually squeezed my breasts! A stranger squeezed my breasts! Gawd! Cons by now was laughing openly at me.

I tried the bra, it fits perfectly, thus confirming her conclusion that I am an E cup. I sheepishly agreed that I was E cup and went to pay for the bra. The cashier was a male. The sales girl very happily walked over and told me,"See, you E cup!"

The cashier was grinning very merrily when he heard her.

My first ever E cup bra. Cons said the Thai women have very small frames so my bigger breasts to them are humongous. Anyway, I should be flattered that I have naturally big breasts. And not to mention the width dropped from 80 to 75 so I probably slimmed down. Heh!

It was quite ironic cos after we came out of the store, we saw this poster outside a salon providing breasts augmentation cum surgery services. We were laughing at the many breasts size and trying to find out which category does our breasts fit into!

We also caught these 2 sales girl dancing there trying to attract crowds.

Next stop, Siam Center. This was a rather special shopping area. Its not exactly a shopping building but rather made up of a series of shops along a couple of streets. The stuff there sold are super cheap. Normal price would be about 100 baht for a pair of shoes or for some bags or stuff. Thats like SGD4.40 for each items! I bought a couple of shoes there, some earrings etc. Cons and Ivy bought some shoes and undies. I tell ya, this trip should be called the undies trip! I will come to that later.

After loitering at MBK and Siam Center for a while, we went to the famous Chinatown street to enjoy some shark's fins and bird nest soup. They really do serve very cheap cheap shark's fins and bird nests! I noticed that there weren't many Caucasians there even though the whole Thailand seemed to be swarmed with them. Probably they could not accept the idea of eating sharks' fins and swiftlets' saliva! Hah, a bunch of chickens!

The sharks' fins were quite nice, normal sharks' fins taste but the bird nests taste terrible. Its just like sugar water with plasticky looking flecks cooked together. Cons did not even want to touch hers after a mouthful. Me and Ivy managed to finish about half a cup and stopped eating altogether. I was too full from the lunch and the sharks' fin to continue anyway. The hawkers thought their bird nests soup were not sweet enough and even offered me a little pot of sugar to add into our bird nests. For a while we were discussing how to get out of the awkward situation cos we just did not want to continue drinking our soup without offending him and we were blaming Cons for it. Haha! In the end, I just stood up and tell the girls to make a run for it, heh!

Our hawker who cooked our bird nest soup. He must have probably felt that his soup taste weird cos he actually went to taste his pot of bird nest soup himself after seeing that Cons was making some funny faces about the soup! Haha! Poor guy.

On the second day, we head straight for Chatuchak. I tell ya, this is the king of all street markets. The whole area is like a maze, a series of never ending maze and we literally got lost there. Happily lost of course. There are tons of clothes, wares, accessories, bags, belts, food, etc for sale and at super cheap prices! Average price tags starts at 100 baht and some expensive items can go up to about 600 bahts. Thats like about 4 bucks to just less than 30 bucks! And the best thing is you can slash price with the hawkers! I got 4 shirts, more accessories. Cons and Ivy got more undies, some skirts, bags and more undies. Now you know why I called this Thailand trip an undies trip?

As it was the Songkran festival, there were kids and young people squirting water at us. They were really getting into the mood of the festival, the atmosphere was so joyous! Initially we girls were trying our best to avoid the water but after a long while of walking around on the super hot day, we just kinda gave up. It was rather refreshing to have water squirted at you when you were feeling hot and sticky all over. I even commented that I would not mind standing in front of the kids, letting them squirt water on me! Haha!

The heat was too much for us to take and so we went back to the only air conditioned shopping center that we knew to take some heat off. MBK. I think we went there once on every day of the 4 days we were there!

Cons and Ivy went to doll their fingernails up while I watched aside in amazement at the skillful ladies painting tiny art on their nails.

We got more undies at Siam center and bought more stuff there. It was so fulfilling and exciting to get a good bargain and to know that you will never be able to get these stuff at that kind of prices in Singapore. We even met a fellow Singaporean girl there and sort of ended up discussing with her how the stuff in Singapore are way too exorbitant already.

Third day, we decided to go for some Thai massage. I tell ya, these masseuses are really strong! I am not exactly very small size myself but they could really twist and turn my body at a blink of the eyes! It was morbidly satisfying to hear cracking sounds from the contortion of my body. Heh.

After the massage, we felt like some sightseeing. And ended up being katok like some foolish tourists. Went for a boat tour around Thailand's river at the recommendation of a cabbie which
cost us like 600 baht each. Should have spent the money on some other shopping.

Even went to a snake farm which interestingly also featured other animals. Saw lots of monkeys, a couple of tigers with really large face, a super furly bear, a couple of peacocks, lots of snakes and lots of parrots.

The supposedly very famous snake show lasted for a disappointing 5-10 mins.

After the ride, the boatman dropped us off at their central pier and the Songkran festival was in full force. When I said full force, it was really in full force, literally. Its near a Buddhist temple palace, and there were tons of people around. The size of the place is so huge that nowhere in Singapore will you be able to see something like this. And there were lots of people, locals as well as foreigners throwing water, throwing powder everywhere! It was rather intimating. After walking around for a while, and being refused entry into their temple cos I was wearing shorts, we figured we might as well go somewhere else.

And so we went to the famous 4-faced Buddha statue that lots of Singaporeans go there to ask for best wishes. It was right in front of their Central Square, another humongous shopping center but we had quite a challenging time telling the cabbie where were wanted to go cos the man did not know a word of English. In the end, I had to write on his notepad and then point to my face while holding up 4 fingers to indicate where we wanted to go!

After some teary eyes and some figuring out on which direction should we start to pray at the statue, we proceeded to Central World. Its a newly built huge shopping center and there was also an event celebrating the Songkran festival there. We went there and tried this steamboat restaurant called the Bar-B-Q Plaza. It was fantastic. The sauce was perfect and best thing it was cheap. We paid like 350baht for the entire meal!

After that, we kinda ran out on Thai baht and went o do some exchange before going back to Siam Square and MBK again. Heh. We just could not think of other places to go to.

Bought some more undies and went back to Pratunam, back to our hotel area. I almost kenna katok again by a hawker. I saw this white shirt that I would like to get for a friend and went to ask for the price. The woman quoted me 150 baht. I wanted to shop around some more and dropped the offer. About an hour later, I went back and asked her for the price and she quoted me 190 baht. I insisted that she quoted me 150 baht before and she insisted that its always 190 baht. Actually, I was ok with the price cos 190 baht for a shirt is still very cheap but I just could not accept the idea that I was being katok like a fool so I walked away, refusing to take her offer up.

Forth day consisted of some last minute shopping, more binging on food and more walking around under the hot Thailand sun. Went back to MBK to have the Bar-B-Q Plaza thingy. Me and Cons just could not get enough of the steamboat. Too tired and too poor on cash to shop anymore, we went to the airport to crash out.

Our luggages. Very heavy.

Finally time for boarding and checking in. Realized that there wasn't any airport tax and not wanting to waste the 500 baht that we kept for the tax, we spent it on our last meal. Think there was something wrong with the meal cos the 3 of us ended up with diarrhea. Thats why I am sitting here at home blogging my trip instead of working in the office. I think I felt another strong urge to visit the toilet again.

My conquests:

Of course these do not include the purchases that I got for my family and my colleagues. I also got a perfume, mascara, liquor from the airport.

Phew, I think I threw in like SGD800 bucks on this trip, including hotel and airfare. All in all, a very exciting and fulfilling trip. Definitely going back to Thailand again in the near future!

Now, to nurse my sore tummy....


scubscub said...

Bangkok is a shopping paradise for undergarment. I also stock up every trip I go there, and the price is cheap too!

Except if you are large frame/large breast, sometimes they dont have size since most of the Thai ladies are small frame with small breasts. :)

Andrew The Asshole said...

Thailand sounds like a really cool place to visit

iRis said...

Oh yes, you should really go there. The stuff there are super cheap, the culture very nice and the people are generally very warm and nice and hospitable.

DK said...

E???? WAH....
*Jaw drop on floor*

iRis said...

Yea precisely, mine dropped to the floor too...

scubscub said...

As long as the E stuff dont drop to the floor.....hahaha... :)

DK said...

Izel: you major anti-climax leh u....

scubscub said...

Haha... no lah, I joking mah....:P

iRis said...

OMY.. my e cups drop to the floor...?? thats a nightmare!

scubscub said...

Hahahaha... funny yet disgusting right??

That's why DK said I anti-climax mah... :P

iRis said...

Yea lah! I got this image of an African tribal woman which long and sagging jugs all the way to the floor...! hahaha