New Year's Eve in Bangkok
Trip Start Jul 13, 2006
55Trip End Jul 06, 2007
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The kids had been desperate to see a film, so we indulged in the ultimate theatre experience. A total of just 32 seats, all fully reclining La-Z-Boy types, a guy comes around with a blanket and takes your 'free' drink order - all included in the $20 price.
Deb really wanted to speak with some Bhudists monks and so we arranged to visit a monastery. I visualized a few buildings nestled around a temple with ample gardens. What we arrived at was this enormous site that looked more like an airport. The temples look like giant spaceships. One of them has 300,000 buddha statues on the outside and another 700,000 on the inside for a total of 1 million. For special events up to 300,000 people attend to meditate
On New Year's Eve as we were just leaving the hotel for dinner a 'buzz' went through the place among the travellers. First reports were that a series of bombs had gone off that killed 20 people. (It was later confirmed that 2 died and more than 30 were injured including 8 tourists, from 9 bombs.) We chose a restaurant right next door and after dinner tentatively walked out on to the street. You would never know anything had happened in this city of 12 million people as all the shops were open and people continued to buy all of the "same-same" knock-off stuff. All organized celebrations were cancelled, but as we were on the streets people were setting off booming fireworks which was a little disconcerting because you were never quite sure if it was another bomb. We didn't stay on the streets for long.