I travel by myself often enough, domestically, and overseas. But having Mr. Mike and his son, Matt on this trip has been special. You already know, from our many previous trips, that Mike is the great explorer.
But his son, Matt really knows food and drink of all types. And fashion! My Asian friends here were so impressed with his vast knowledge of food, spices, and culture. So was I.
So, wherever we went, he added a huge element of background and insight into our food. They could not believe that he knew so much about SE Asian food. And they would not let me pay for anything!!!
But now I am back in Bangkok, checked into my hotel (Wednesday). I did not realize the old airport, Don Muang is an hour away from the newer Suvarnabhumi Airport. I thought the shuttle bus was abducting me to the hinterlands!!!
Anyway, I took the new train down to Sukhumvit (city center) and the famous Siam Paragon shopping center and food court phantasmagoria. And I felt like sushi and tempura, so here I am at Fumi. I had the chirashi, and a nice piece of saba shioyaki. And after walking around a bit, I indulged in one of the ultimate treats, a strawberry kakigori (pictured above).
I also made my way to the famous local shopping mall, MBK. But again, no luck finding a few of the items my friends back home requested.
On the negative side, loud, and I mean loud and pushy Chinese tourists everywhere. Bless their hearts, they are the Japanese tourists of the 80s. But a near fist fight and aggressive pushing and shoving match broke out in Siem Reap. The instructions given to them by flight attendants in Chinese language do not register! They unbuckle, stand, and start to unload as soon as the plane lands.
Men pushing women, everybody yelling, cops on their way as we boarded, thankfully, a different flight. Still, it was the flight from hell. Remind me not to take Air Asia again, if I ever go back to the region.
What to make of it? Americans are now the quiet and polite tourists. What a transformation!!! What makes them do this? Help me understand!!!
We are the only ones sweating, the locals do not sweat!! I am showering at least twice a day, and changing my shirt at least three times a day.
The JAL Lounge in Bangkok has real food for us, what a pleasant morning (Thursday). Maybe the US carriers can take a hint? But sushi for breakfast is a bit much to enjoy. They had plenty of other choices, however.
I wish I had more than an hour layover in Tokyo. Love the airport, food, and gift selection. I never made it to the JAL lounge at Narita.
But I was able to buy some of the famous Japanese thin, wafer cookies at Fa So La at Narita airport. I stood in line for 45 minutes with loud, obnoxious tourists from “you know where”.
In LAX, I got to try the new American Airlines 1st class lounge. Better than United, but not up to Singapore Airline standards.
I should be home later today, Thursday. I can’t wait.
Was this my last trip to SE Asia? Probably. Two weeks is enough now that I am past 70 years of age. Perhaps it was the heat and humidity?