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Bangkok and the Maeklong Market

Bangkok and the Maeklong Market

You can read this post in : French

This year, for my first visit to Bkk, i decided to change district. I used to stay in the “quiet Thewet”, but now i want to try the modern Sukhumvit. A simple but very decent hotel tempted me on the internet, and the owner is French.
At the bottom of BTS  Thong lo, 1st street on the right, exit n° 1, the guest house was there for me. The bedroom is alright, but a little too close to the main avenue, so, all this + jetlag = a sleepless night !
Anyway, in this awful concrete jungle, totally polluted by car fumes, real madness built by mankind, there used to be a real jungle…
I could not stop myself, smiling kindly, when I saw a lovely squirrel, real athlete walking on the complexity of electric wires on the other side of the street, and in front of my window.
Walking outside, I start to wonder : what am I really looking for, or want to find out here ? It’s 7 in the morning, i am hungry. The answer is not long to come, it’s very hot, lovely feeling on my skin, spicy odors and enticing smells come from the “street food shops” all along the pavement.
The excessive turmoil of traffic, overwhelming all form of  life, to the extent of feeling a kind of long tangible wave, a monster accordion, indecent, reaching every single corner over all the population….all this activity, nevertheless gives you a feeling of security. A funny mix, coming out of a “strange asian plant”, grey but colorful, hopeless and toxic, oppressing and loving, crack of a whip yet docile.
A thousandth of second is enough, like a jab/shot …to take you straight away in this new “life” where i feel good.
A nasty dark dead end where aluminum tables are lined up, will be my first restaurant to have a black coffee and a dish of rice with thai omelet on top, spicy and greasy, but delicious in the morning !!!
Meanwhile the Koël cuckoo sings (listen to it here) which is inevitable, wherever you are !
Afternoon, i am lucky to meet the owner of the hotel, a young Frenchman, also a traveler, who bought this place 3 years ago, it’s a nice guy, good social contact. He indicates a small restaurant, which serves “pat thai” with seafood, exquisite ! He also offers me to change my room, further from the noisy road and a lot bigger. So the end of the day is : a good rest !
Thursday morning, Pep, whom I haven’t seen since Feb. 2011, she is a tourist guide and a friend, offers to take me and visit Maeklong’s market, near Amphawa’s market. It is a unique and stunning place, the market retailers’ stalls are laid all along the railway track, the train is the slowest of Thailand’s. It runs 4 times a day, so the sales people only have a few seconds to remove all their stock and put it away. A very strange tradition !!
You can watch the video, it’s shaking a lot because i had to move quickly too, this place is so busy !

Later in the afternoon, we visited a temple Wat Bang Kung, at Amphawa, all tangled in the roots of fig trees, a “mini Angkor” where a big Buddha remains, all covered in gold leaf and visited by beautiful butterflies ( Pieridae family).
A walk in King Rama the second’s park, who was an epicurean but also had a passion for art and was a famous poet. There we ended a lovely day.
Back to Bangkok’s hell…. and just like that, Alain and i decide to leave at night to meet Muay at Mae Sot early, next morning….

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Bangkok and the Maeklong Market

par Stéphane Bidouze time to read: 4 min