Without many options of things to see in Bangkok due to the flooding, we headed out of town to the famous floating markets. Crazy Asian style fruits and vegetables, weird stuff cooked in a boat…. sounds good! Plus, it was something we could fit in before we flew out later that afternoon.
The early morning, 900 Baht or $30 USD, tax ride each out to the market was long and boring. Our glazed over stares out the window changed for only a moment about an hour and a half into the ride. I couldn’t help but scream it when I saw them, “HEYYYYY! MONKEYYYYSSSS!” About five of them were eating some garbage on the side of the road in the middle of the city.
A half hour later we arrived at the market where we ran into tons of people unloading from tour buses. Bad sign. A woman ushered us over telling us a price of 900 Baht, for what we did not understand. All this time we thought you just walked around on land while the people in the boats anchored to the side sold produce, meats and delicious little snacks. Not the case. We now needed to buy a boat ride. A little pissed off that our market trip had now just doubled to $60 per person, we loaded into a long tail boat for a tour of the floating market. Lucky us, we got our own boat for just the 3 of us!
Then it got worse. Our driver stopped at a stand on the side of the canal filled with trinkets and souvenirs. You know, the type of cheap souvenirs you see 1 million times in a tourist destination? In Thailand it’s hats, postcards, things made out of coconuts, elephant figurines, etc. Then, we stopped at another, then another. You’d think that someone would think…hmmm, these people have just floated by 10 souvenir stands with EXACTLY the same stuff. I should think of something else to sell. To make matters worse, what we thought was luck was now a hinderance. With only 3 of us in the boat, the pressure was focused on just us to buy.
Eventually, our driver got the hint that we weren’t interested in buying souvenirs. Probably because Dusty kept turning around and telling him to move on. We did find some snacks to enjoy such as coconuts and Thai pancakes. Aside from the monkeys on the side of the road on our drive in, the snacks were the highlight of the trip. There was also some interesting artwork, but its a little difficult to buy a framed painting and take it with you on the boat, back to the hotel, and then around with you in your backpack.
It should also be noted that Dusty had a much more fun time than I did because of the interesting subject matter and colors. His face was in his camera the entire time. I just wanted to eat. ;)
Funny how photos can be so deceiving. It’s what made us decide to venture out in the first place. See what I mean?
Oh, and it turns out you can walk around at the edge. Note to self: do research above and beyond looking at pictures!