Well, here we are. One week down in Bangkok and all the richer for it – not so much financially, but definitely experientially. We are loving it. Bangkok is an incredibly stimulating place. There is just so much going on. Although it has been affectionately dubbed ‘Big Mango’, we are experiencing it to be more like a giant fragrantly fried onion. There is layer upon layer upon layer — upon layer of detail to discover, as far as the eye can see.
During our exploration of fragments of our enormous neighbourhood here in Ekamai, I have discovered I can walk past the same place ten times – more, and see something new every time. Here a dingy looking hovel by day, there a bustling brightly lit eatery by night. From that angle, a pokey motorcycle taxi stop. From this angle, a striking mural.
The city is pulsing with energy and industry. From our apartment I can hear a symphony of drills, saws, hammers, welders. The wet-warm air throbs with the whir of a multitude of air conditioners, engines, exhaust, acceleration. Motor cycles zip, trucks growl, tuk tuks rattle and cars rumble and honk on the ever flowing arterials of traffic surrounding.
There are other, subtler sounds too. The soothing trickle of running water and the optimism of bird song. And now, the echo of a lone Thai woman’s heeled shoes on the street below, where, as she clops past the spirit tree beneath our 7th floor apartment window, she silently presses her hands together in the respectful prayer-like gesture, known as the “wåis”. Her prayer adds a reverent weight to the city’s cacophony.
Stepping into the throng of the street, Bangkok holds us in a warm embrace and stills our hearts with its strangely soothing music, and, so far, we love it.
This is but a mere morsel… Stay tuned, more to come.