Friday, August 5, 2011

Bangkok: Travel, First Day, and Birthday Dinner


At the gate in Johannesburg. It's a short 50-min. flight from Gaborone, Botswana, to Jo'burg, then an 11-hr. flight direct to Bangkok. This was the last time during the trip that my hair was straight; Bangkok's humidity is NOT friendly to naturally curly hair.

I didn't tell you guys we were going to Asia before we left because I really thought it might not happen! I was scheduled for training at the last minute and didn't decide to bring the family or finalize their flight details until Thursday -- and we left on Saturday! I was handed our passports with Thai visas in them at literally the very end of the day on Friday!! Thank you, FedEx -- the Thai Embassy is in Johannesburg! Talk about a completely nerve-wracking wait.

So I didn't want to get anyone's hopes up, but thankfully everything fell into place at the last minute and we were off!

As I mentioned before, Thai Airways is the way to fly. The flight attendants have beautiful, colorful silk uniforms, which, along with the upholstery in the aircraft, are gold, dark blue, purple, and hot pink. They even had a change of uniform before we landed in the morning!

We flew Economy but we still got hot towels, full-color printed menus for our meals -- the food was amazing. The video and TV programming was really good, plus they put us behind the bulkhead without our even asking. Very impressed! p.s. we flew Singapore Air on the way back which is supposed to be the best, but at least in Economy it was not nearly as nice as Thai Airways!

As we descended above Thailand at five-something in the morning, we saw the sun rise in an intense, soft swirl of hot pink and deep purple. I immediately thought of Jay-Z "... see the sun rising off the shore of Thailand ... /Can I get a?" For 95% of the rest of the trip, the sky was overcast or raining, so I was pretty happy to have seen one Thai sunrise.


The view from our hotel in Bangkok. May I HIGHLY recommend the Le Meridien Plaza Athénée Bangkok. You know how sometimes pictures on hotel websites make the place look better than it really is? This place is the opposite -- it was even nicer than depicted. I wish I would have taken pics of the pool, it was amazing.

We celebrated Neil's birthday by having a family dinner at a Thai restaurant in the hotel.


I wanted to get a sitter, but it turned out OK as a family dinner because we had DORA!!!!! I think it's time to follow Brooke and Stuart's lead and get Nile an iPad ...

Maybe you're thinking "a sitter? Weren't you at a hotel?" Oh yes, this was one of the amenities --  babysitters on staff. Charge it to the room, please! Later in the week we took advantage of that benefit and went out. Kind of weird to leave your kid with someone you've known for all of 2 minutes ... but hey, it was a 5-star hotel, I was confident Nile would be better off if something happened there than in my own house with the nanny! And honestly, the Thai people are all so incredibly kind and gentle and love children, and the babysitter had the pinnacle of those traits.

A gecko joined us for dinner, on the wrong side of the glass.

I discreetly mentioned to the waitress that it was Neil's birthday and they came out after the meal and sang to him as they presented him with this amazing tropical fruit arrangement!





Heading back up to our room. Neil said I'm making a Mary Kate & Ashley face here ...


M. said...

ah, i'm so jealous of that spread!! Passionfruit and dragon fruit are my two favs. ah, mouth is watering.

also, you're tots making a MK&Ashley face! :)

modestmuse said...

Well, Miss World Traveler, if you haven't been to Thailand yet, I highly recommend it!

Jo Jo said...

We have to pray as the ancients prayed. We are women now, not children, and are expected to pray with maturity. The words most often used to describe urgent, prayerful labor are wrestle, plead, cry, and hunger...In some sense, prayer may be the hardest work we will ever be engaged in, and perhaps it should be.