I’ve been measuring the heat in icons.  Three fuzzy fire icons is at a high.  My first night in Bangkok felt like a belly flop. It hit’s you in the stomach and knocks the wind out of you for a second. Tonight on night (4) it’s at 2 fuzzy fires.  I’ll henceforth be noting the days like (500) Days of Summer since that’s what I watched on the plane ride over here and that’s how I’ve been illustrating my journeys in my new favorite thing: my handmade watercolor book.

There’s a slight breeze and the wafting combination of yuck and yum smells has become secondary to my sensory overload mostly because why dwell in it, it ain’t going away and there are so many other things to notice; things like the line up of 7-11s much like ABC stores in Waikiki; the motorcycles (more on that later) that zoom past you reminding me of the vespa mosquito swarms in Italy; and even the idea of drinking beers anywhere and everywhere you go, no questions asked, #heaven. I have come to gravitate to Thai Iced tea and the longing for a Thai Massage… so many parlors which one do I choose?  And will you rip me off? Probably.

I took my first motorcycle ride today after being turned off by the many instances of rides I’d taken with my brother.  I’ve almost perfected the “not caring if I die” mentality which requires me to never look ahead, instead look to the side and maintain a healthy ignorance.  Ignorance is bliss.  The first ride was a little intimidating, whipping around corners, speeding up and slowing down in a milisec and changing balance to maneuver.  The second ride became enjoyable as it was dusk and the lights of the city were coming on, the pulse of movement was racing around just as much as we were and the total ride costed 15 baht which is pennies usd.

Ehren took me to a “Waikiki” market to buy some knives for my boys.  And I’m happy to say I bought two really impressive hand carved pieces.  The rest of the market proved to be much like Waikiki hence the reference…tourists (the most white people I’ve seen since being here) and filled with trinkets that seemed to be imported from … you might’ve guessed it, China.  But I did find some vintage shops, carefully investigating tags (no tags with English words) and quality and bought two dresses that seemed almost like flea market finds.  I also tinkered around with a hand held fan embellished with elephants cause while it was only two fuzzy fire icons, it’s still ball-hanging hot.  And I indulged in a caricature by some local hipster-looking artist.  It felt nice to find art that was done right there in front of you, by someone from Thailand and costing a decent price while being a bit self indulgent.  Did I hit all the marks?  YUP.

All in all it was progressive day of shopping, people watching and partaking in local eats.  Ehren introduced me to this green crunchy on the outside mochi-like on the inside, vegetarian, with what looked like a spicy soy sauce dipper street food that was a great treat (pictured below). YUM!  Not so yum?  The fish balls on a stick that I bought later that day in an attempt to get something light to eat before dinner. Only 10 baht and while the sauce, spicy and amazing (a common trend I’m discovering…everything comes with some kind of amazing sauce) came along with a few sprigs of basil and some wide cabbage leaves, the actual fish cake made me think of the imitation crab meat we have in Hawaii rolled into a ball with almost a gelatin consistency. YUCK.

As I’m writing this, my beer now condensated (a new word I’m trying to add to The Manifold dictionary) and warm is in need of some ice and with this alcohol bubbling around in my heated noodle I’m realizing just how awesome it’d be to shoot (with my camera) a beautiful Thai girl in these here congested streets.  I see my mission clearly now…

P.S. I will be updating my journeys here on this website if you want to keep up!  BKK is filled with amazing things to see and do, stay tuned.


My caricaturist.

Thai Lou Diamond Phillips on a banjo.