Wat Arun & Beer festival

Every morning was pretty much the same pattern. Andre wakes up early and go out for a quick stride and comes back with fresh fruits in plastic bag to share with us. I wake up in hangover and see Peter sleeping deeply. We shower in an orderly manner and get prepared to go out with our sun screen and sunglasses. There was this shop in this little street next to Khaosan road that selled really nice chicken noodle soup. The soup was helping a lot with our daily hangovers as well.

We wanted to do more tourist activities. This time we didn’t go out on the main road to find those usual taxis/tuktuks that were waiting to charge inflated prices to tourists. I am a huge fan/proponent of Google. At that time I found Google Now fairly useful. It recognised where I was and showed many useful cards like the weather at the location, quick translator, currency changer, etc. So I decided to use Google maps to guide us to the place we wanted to visit, which was Wat Arun. This place was picked without much information or thinking. I searched up Wat Arun in Google maps and went to the public transit option. It was showing us where to catch a bus and what number to catch. Surprisingly everything went so smoothly. We went to the bus stop and our bus came. We got on and a ticket lady came to us telling us the price which was extremely CHEAP. It was almost free compared to what we were paying to those taxis and tuktuks. We got off the bus where Google maps was showing. There we caught another bus and this one was FREE.img_20141223_1136241.jpg

After getting off this bus we walked into a residential area only relying on the Google maps directions. And here we are. Wat Arun! Without knowing a single thing about catching buses in Thailand nor being able to speak Thai, we got to this place we didn’t even know just by following the Google maps direction. It was another of those moments where I felt the power of technology is awesome.

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Wat Arun was a much smaller temple compared to Wat Pho. Overall the feeling was a bit different. Actually only thing that I remember is this main tower where people could go up. The stairs were very steep which made it feel little unsafe but I enjoyed it. At the highest point we could reach the view was amazing.

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I could see the beauty of this city in panorama view. Numerous various kinds of boats were floating on Chao Praya river. Traditional buildings were stretched all over which turn into more modern styled buildings as it goes further. The magnificent Wat Phra Kaew was clearly visible across the river as well. I heard later on some reconstruction work has begun at Wat Arun which made it unable to go up for tourists. I felt very lucky that I could see this view. I was just speechless at the awe of this city’s beauty.

We walked back the same way we came in and used Google maps to take bus back to our place. After some rest and shower, we decided to go to the central for dinner and the beer festival which we heard about from a Thai friend who wasn’t so close. We were so happy that our Google maps worked so well to get around places in such inexpensive way. So of course we tried again. It was around 5 or 6pm when the sun was setting leaving the sky with beautiful colours. We got onto the bus which was quite packed so we were standing. Now if I could go back the time I would never ever have tried to catch bus to central at RUSH HOUR. We had no idea how bad the Bangkok traffic was. That was one of the worst things we could do. The bus was barely moving and plus it didn’t have any air conditioning and also it was full of people which made it worse! I think it took like 1.5 or 2 hours to get to the central. It was complete experience of HELL.

Eventually we came to Siam and had some food (I think it was the Japanese restaurant where we get unlimited everything except the main dish which becomes one of my favourite restaurants there). We then walked via the sky walk to go to the central world which is another huge mall next to Siam Paragon. There is a huge open area next to the mall and that’s where the beer festival was held. Apparently this beer festival happens every Christmas period over few days. There are 2 or 3 big sections. Each section is like a outdoor pub. We line up and get our stamp then get a seat inside. Sometime people have to wait long time as they have limited capacity and can let new customers in only when existing ones leave. We were lucky that we didn’t have to wait too long and got our seat in the coolest looking section. Our Thai friend who told us about the event is actually a DJ and he was paid to DJ there on some days and unfortunately not on the day we went. img_20141223_223227.jpg

We stopped by another place that sold beers before we came here so we were little tipsy already. We ordered a tower of beer which came with bucket of ice (very common in Thailand). We were all very happy and got tipsy and drunk. After a while we left to go back to Khaosan for some final night fun. We caught a tuktuk. This was the best tuktuk experience I had in my whole life. The driver was quite young and for God knows what reason he drove like crazy fast. We were screaming with excitement and scare. When Andre got onto the tuktuk he had a cigarette in his hand and after a while when I saw him again, the cigarette was missing. He said he doesn’t know where it went lol. It must have flown away as the driver was going crazy fast. When we arrived at Khaosan, we all thanked him a lot for such a fun ride and gave him all our little cash as tips and gratitude of the fun he provided us.

Once we got to Khaosan, it was the same shit again. Brother Wat’s bar, buckets, The Club and more buckets. Peter went back to motel earlier by himself as he was feeling quite sick. On the way back to our place with Andre, I experienced one unforgettable memory of my life. We usually went through the little alley way that leads to Rambuttri and our motel. In the middle of the alley there were 2,3 Thai guys with drums and guitars playing some music and singing. There were also a few white tourists who were enjoying the music. Like I said earlier, I am quite sensitive to music by which I mean I am good at catching good/bad music (for me). This melody definitely got me. I instinctively stopped at them and got into the muse. It was a Thai song that I don’t even know but I tried to sing along and the melody was so good that it made me dance and kept singing. I also wanted to keep that memory so I took video as well. When I was taking video with my phone, a random white woman took it off me and took videos of the scene and of me and Andre. Even though I was very wasted I still was quite aware of possibility she could run away with my phone so I gently and naturally took it back from her. But she was just a nice lady. After that Andre and I continued to walk to our place. In front of our motel there were some chicks sitting down and resting. We went straight to them and had some chat (30-60min). There was a street food cart selling some skewers and I decided to buy one and finished it real quick. One of the things on the stick was a huge chilli which I thought was something else. It was god damn spicy! I had to drink some water or else I was going to die. I went to a bar that was closing and they used it as opportunity to make little more money and charged me really ridiculous price. I didn’t have a choice but to just pay it for a bottle of water. After having chat with those girls we went back to our room and were knocked down.

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