Bangkok, a city full of life

. Bangkok


Bus shuttle out of the airport. I was safely esconsced in air-con, high above on the highway, but the sights of mega billboards and concrete sprawl soon overwhelmed that single sense.

The bus spat me out into the tourist pit at khaosan road, around which i spent an hour walking around looking for accommodation, getting very accustommed to the peculiar smell of bangkok’s streets.

I couldn’t find any, and realise i was on the wrong side of the road wondering further and further into shophouses and sometimes quite oddly (very odd), a Starbucks.

It was probably a combination of my own sensitivities to smells and stinks and being beaten down by the bangkok heat and diesel smoke- I was looking for a ride out by the next evening. I fled to the mundane quiet of Ayutthaya 2 hours away.

Along the way to the train station, i saw a schoolboy knocked down by a car. He got up after a while, with a little help. Traffic doesn’t move too fast, thankfully.

. along thanon ratchadamnoen

One of the main thoroughfares, and a welcome sight every time i emerge half-lost from an alley.

. intersection of payathai and rama 1; of the connecting skytrains


Where siam square’s mega malls meet, sustained by a continuous stream of people from the connecting skytrains, high and clean away from the steady rumble of traffic beneath.

.

Bangkok pretty much assaulted my senses. Left me reeling and bruised from the massive tangles of people trying to live, from constructing and restructing taking place in the dusty shophouses, encroaching buildings, overlays of road systems.

Everything spilt from everywhere: cars from roads, tuktuks onto curbs, food from carts, babies from mothers’ overloaded arms, sewage from gutters, people along roads, smoke roaring out from vehicles. For the curious, cleavage remains largely hidden though.

It’s a dynamic city indeed, and though it took a while for me to disengage from my orderly habituations, i came to appreciate the life underneath the dirt and bustle towards the end.

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