We checked out of our hotel but left our luggage in the store room so that we could see a few more things in Bangkok. We went to the old city to see The Grand Palace. Within the Palace complex the famous Emerald Buddha housed in a temple is the most popular attraction. Currently, the Thai have this Buddha, but it was taken from the Laotians. Since I have been told its long and interesting history, I wanted to see it.
We hired a Grab which is a ride share like Uber. Our driver told us that being a Grab driver in Thailand is illegal. If he is caught, he will be fined around $65. The Grand Palace will be crawling with police, and we look like tourists and are sitting in the back seat. So he plans to take us nearby to a side street, and then he will pay for a tuk tuk for the rest of the way. Ok.
When we get there, he can’t find a tuk tuk driver so he flags down a motorbike, and Rob and I jump on the back. We certainly felt like organ donors since we didn’t have helmets. It was an adventure!!
We weren’t able go inside The Grand Palace. It must be like going into the White House!! However, the grounds around the palace were beautifully decorated.
The Emerald Buddha is housed in a temple at The Grand Palace. We weren’t allowed to take a picture on the inside but Rob took one as we were swept away with the crowds outside.
There are over 40,000 temples in Thailand, and this is the most important one. There are also numerous visitors and crowds. One is requested to not touch each other. Impossible!
It is said that the country who possesses the Emerald Buddha will prosper. The Buddha is dressed by the king several times per year.
We exited The Grand Palace and bought Toasties at 7/11. These are a must get food in Thailand. It is basically a panini. We took them to a nearby park for an impromptu picnic.
On our walk back home, we went down a street that seemed like everything Buddhist. If you were a monk, here is where you would do your shopping. This fellow is putting bling on a green Buddha.
On one street stores sold only wood products such as doors. My son-in-law Nathan has a woodshop. I wonder if he would recognize tools used here.
We rode a water taxi on the klongs which are canals. It was fun to see life happening along the klong.
I am impressed that the ticket takers can stay on the side of the boat without falling in and getting wet.
Once back on land we had a short walk to the hotel. I stumbled and fell on the sidewalk. I looked up and saw Rob walking ahead of me with no knowledge of my predicament.
A motorcyclist stopped and jumped off his bike to help me up and retrieve my hat in the street. He asked if I was okay and if I needed a motorcycle ride. I told him no that I was fine and would catch up with my husband who still has no idea of my situation.
I do catch up with Rob who is surprised to learn about my spill.
We are over the moon thrilled to start seeing our children arrive in Thailand.
The first one arrived at 9:35 pm. We held up this sign so that Amy could find us!!
She chose Adventure as her word for 2020. She has been traveling in Vietnam since before Christmas. Amy loves exploring, meeting people from all over, and staying in hostels. Vietnam is in the same time zone as Thailand so she will hit the ground running.
Next to arrive is Julie. She has been on the move for a total of 27 hours which includes traversing 12 time zones. We are literally halfway around the world from Indianapolis. Julie flew to Atlanta, then Seoul, then Bangkok.
The airport is hopping.
We traded happy hugs and bought SIM cards for our arrivers.
We grab a Grab to get to our hotel…and will do it all over again when our daughter Elle and her husband William arrive on Saturday.