Adventures in the Lone Star State

Vacation Coming to an End

Well, this morning I left the company of Yale and Mackenzie. I can’t believe that three weeks have passed. The first week or so passed by very slowly. However, my time in KL and Singapore went by fairly quickly with Hong Kong being just a blur. By the time I reached Thailand, I was exhausted and ready to come home. It’s weird to be sitting here on the airplane by myself. For the last 3 weeks, I have always had a passenger with me. It’s going to be a little strange this evening relaxing in the hotel in Hong Kong alone.

The drive to the airport was a bit interesting. I crossed a few lanes of traffic and jumped into a cab just as the light turned green. All I said was “airport.” The man said something in Thai and I stared blankly back at him. I had no idea what he was saying. Maybe he was asking me which airport I wanted to go to. Since I’m not Thai, I hoped that the cabbie would assume that I would be going to the new international airport.

To make the drive even more interesting, it was fun to watch him thread the needle through traffic. Once we hit the expressway, the cabbie started driving as if he had to win a Bangkok F1 race. We flew by cars on the right, then on the left, narrowly making some small gaps in traffic. I wasn’t sure why this cabbie was in such a rush, but I felt comfortable sitting in the back seat w/o a seatbelt at speeds in excess of 160 kph (96 mph). (Just so you know, there are no seatbelts in the back of any taxi—only the front seat, which Yale sat in most of the time.)

Just so you know, we got hosed on the way into Bangkok. We paid 700 Baht for a ride into the city. That’s more than double the cost of the trip. From my downtown hotel, it cost me 255 Baht + 60 Baht in tolls. I only had a 500 Baht bill, so I ended paying 460 Baht for the whole trip. That’s how Thai taxi drivers; if you hand them a 500 Baht or 1,000 Baht bill, they won’t give you change. I was fortunate enough to get 100 Baht back from the cabbie. However, I still paid 125 Baht (US$4) more than I should have.

Since I got to the airport with over an hour to spare, I decided to go window shopping. After all, the airport only had designer name stores to shop at (e.g., Gucci, Mont Blanc, E. Zegna, Dior, D&G, etc.). I wasn’t sure if Cathay Pacific was going to feed me since it was a short flight, so I stopped in at a Thai café and had some ostrich sausage with white rice. It was scrumptious. Turns out that Cathay did provide a meal (fish, potatoes, tropical fruit, and coconut ice cream).

May 28th, 2007 at 5:01 am

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