Bangkok Vacation – Day 3

This was the last day of my vacation. Yes, it’s short. A lot of people had been telling me about it. I’m treating it as a slightly extended weekend getaway. So the first day was harrowing, the second day was eventful. The third and final day…

Erawan Shrine revisited

This was where the 4 faced Buddha resided. My brother wanted to go there for another visit. I’m just astonished that the small open air shrine was situated right next to a modern shopping place where a window display had Burberry on it.

My brother told me that legend has it that any building constructed on that piece of land kept collapsing. As a gesture to appease the spirit residing on that land, people built a shrine. Since then, nothing bad happened and the place flourished.

In fact, any wish you have, when sincerely made, will come true. The stories I’ve heard with wishes actualised, seemed to come with binding promises, say you will come back to pray and give more if the wish is fulfilled. I’ve even heard of a Hong Kong actress who promised to dance naked.

Mah Boon Krong

Supposedly another shopping haven, my brother wanted to go there to get shoes or socks. We decided to take the exciting combination of the underground metro and the sky train to get to our destination. This would give me the chance to experience two modes of transportation in one fell swoop.

After paying for the metro ride, this was given to me
Metro coin
It works like the tap card in Singapore. You just place it near a sensor at the barrier gate, and lo and behold, the gates part. When you reach your destination, there’s a coin slot at the exit gates. Slot it in, and the gates open. And it’s much smaller and easier to carry than a credit card sized ticket card.

The sky train ride was uneventful. I did notice that they had handrails attached near the ceiling. They snake high around the train coach, forming something like a bean pod outline. This way, even if you’re not near a pole or something to grab on, you can still reach upwards for a hand hold.

Which is unlike the Singapore MRT, where there’s nothing to hold on to if you’re unfortunately near the doors. What, you think I have magnetic stabilisers in my shoes? I’m tall and I have a high centre of gravity. I need a hand hold.

Alright, we’re there at Mah Boon Krong. I noticed many a shop selling iPod shuffles, hand phones and other gadgets. Use your own imagination about the authenticity. There were also many gold and jewelery shops, much more than I expected.

The deathly taxi ride

So we did our thing in Mah Boon Krong, and went back to CentralWorld. Then we took a taxi back to our hotel. The driver took a different route than the usual taxi route when we rode back from Siam Paragon. I thought that would maybe save some time, because there’s a particular turn that slows the traffic.

The driver just sped. And sped. And sped. This was where I was grateful for a seatbelt. The taxi wove between gaps in traffic, slunk down questionable alleys, and do abrupt turns like in those car chase movie scenes.

Then a car jumped out. The taxi driver slammed his foot on the brakes and threw my brother and I onto the back of the front seats. I had my hands out to brace myself, and then we were flung backwards from the aftershock.

Miraculously, nothing else happened. The taxi driver continued to plow along the street as if it’s a commonplace event. I’m just happy to be alive… flying on the evening flight back to Singapore soon…