Monday, February 23, 2015

Asia Trip - Day 14 - Bangkok, Thailand

Sun 22
Bangkok • Optional Floating Market & Mangrove Adventure tour
Enjoy a day in Bangkok for independent discoveries or join our optional Floating Market excursion, which journeys west of Bangkok to the riverside town of Ratchaburi. Here, we'll board a long-tail boat to explore the colorful Damnoen Saduak floating market. Then, we stop at a palm sugar workshop and coconut farm, followed by lunch at a local restaurant. After lunch, we journey by bus to Khlong Khon district of Samutsongkram province, where we board a fisherman's boat to explore the mangrove forest area, feed the wild monkeys, and visit a local fisherman’s home. We return to Bangkok by bus in the late afternoon.
Dinner is on your own this evening.

Today was a totally free day. Of course there was the optional tour. James and I decided to go on it.
Wake-up call at 5:45 am and departure at 7:15.
Ole always says if we see something we have a question about to take a photo and then he can answer it. This sign is in the elevator. What is "Monk jump over the wall"?

This is a wonderful group. Everybody is so considerate and punctual. We were 10 (of the 16).
I did bring handwork but have not touched it because it is interesting when you look out of the window.

Ole has a new hand-made map today.

It was quite a drive. Climbing into the boat worried me a little but it went well. You did not have a very stable feeling. Nevertheless it was a lot of fun. Time went fast. Photo taking pretty impossible. As soon as you saw it you were past it.

We were three boats.

After we had climbed out we had some time to stroll around by ourselves.

Our leader Ole found a second breakfast.

Sonyeon thinks that William's Pops probably would love to shop for veggies here.

Dried fish skin folded attractively.

After that the bus takes us to one of the many coconut plantations in this area. The tree is useful for lots of things.
This is the flower which could produce many coconuts. If you trim the tip and catch the dripping juice you can make sugar like we learned in Burma.

We tasted it and thought it had more flavor.

Ups, Sonyeon was too late for the tasting.

How you shred the coconut.

The hard shell is being used and the husk also. And new plants can be sold too. There is one nut with a shoot you see. Bowls, birdhouses ...

Cooking the juice down.

Connie is hard at work. If I understood right you need to stir constantly. We were given metal spoons and were told to scrape at the edge of the cauldron for a taste. Nice!

An order ready to ship.

We also were given coconuts to drink the refreshing juice.

It's seems the place was also a place for rescue animals.
This snake was found as a baby and is 7 years old.

Squirrels have fallen out of trees. There was a whole cage with chipmunks.

Then the bus took us close to the river. We walked just a little because the streets are too narrow. These were nice looking houses.

We are all in one boat. A young boy is driving it and his girl friend is the helper in the front.

The river (or canal?) flows into the ocean, the Gulf of Thailand

We go into a little side arm and feed monkeys with bananas. They were eager little creatures.
Here is a VIDEO!

Seems like that the water is pretty healthy because there is an abundance of life. These shells are a delicacy. He just had to stick his hand in and pull it out with several.

They have a big problem here. Because mangrove trees were cut down they have lost a lot of land to the sea already. So, we are planting new mangroves.
Actually, Chuck did it for all of us. Bless him. At the end Ole helped too. Amazing how every step sunk into the ground.

Somebody saw a family of snakes. They must not have been bad because they were not concerned.

On the way back.

Half way he stops and dives in. He dives and with every one he comes back with a handful of cockle shells.

I didn't know but this is where we are going to eat lunch. The whole place belongs to one family. When we arrived there was karaoke music going on. It was actually the son already pretty drunk because it was his birthday.

Never saw a wooden washbasin before.

It was an incredible amount of different foods to try. Some a success, some not so.

That's it for today. Back to the hotel.
I take care of my photos and rest a little. My slight cough has finally become bad. James goes for a massage.
Later we decide to go for a little exploration. This is his massage place. The girls waved to us on the other side of the street.

We go to the big mall and find the food court. This looks good on the menu to me. James selects green curry.

It was a lively place. Every night this street under the sky train is closed for 6 hours and many vendors sell anything you could think of. Much much food cooked with the help of little generators.

Back at the hotel I decide to take a nice hot bath and feel much better afterwards. The tub is first class. Real deep.
Night night. Wake-up call tomorrow morning early because we are flying to Laos.

1 comment:

  1. That boat ride was fantastic – except for the snake. I would have fainted and fallen overboard and drowned! Momma says that Asia is hard for the ophidiophobe (those, like me, who suffer from a snake phobia) – she says I’d be fainting all over the place! But I might risk fainting if I got to feed monkeys. I am enamored of monkeys! I loved the pictures of the boat vendors! Sorry for the bad cough – hope you are feeling better soon!