Monthly Archives: August 2014

When it rains so hard that…

 

 

– you can barely hear the thunder over the sound of the rain

– you think it is raining hard and then it manages to rain even harder

– an umbrella is worthless and one just needs to seek shelter at a 7-Eleven

– it’s best to take your flip-flops off and walk around barefoot than to slip and slide in them

– you have to walk through puddles with water up to your ankles

– even frogs seek shelter

 

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The Bridge over the River Kwai

During my first week in Thailand, I was able to visit the famed Bridge over the River Kwai. ¬†First off it was spelled in a variety of ways including Kwae. ¬†Tourists swarmed the area. ¬†I didn’t see a plaque but as I’ve read since there is apparently one. ¬†

The bridge is located just outside of Kanchanaburi, Thailand, near a temple beautifully situated on the river.

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My uniform

In preparing to come to Thailand, it was stressed to bring modest clothing that covered knees and shoulders. ¬†Also to bring dress clothing for work. ¬†Well turns out I didn’t need half of what I brought because I wear a uniform. ¬†

I was issued three pink/gray polos on my first day of work and told to wear them each day but make sure to wear white on Fridays and on the other day you don’t have a clean polo. Having grown up with a uniform, I don’t mind uniforms. ¬†They simplify things. I just wish our polos were a little lighter because they can feel heavy with the heat.

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McDonald’s

The joy of McDonald’s when traveling is that you know it is a place where there is AC, water, and a restroom. ¬†In Thailand, there are a variety of McDonald’s. ¬†The mini-mart version that serves just the basics. The grab and go version that serves even fewer basics and is typically just a counter in a transit station. And of course the full McDonald’s complete with McCafe, wifi, AC, and a restroom.

Some unique menu variations in Thailand are fried chicken and rice, a chicken/vegetable dish served with rice and an egg on top, and a variety of pies, including corn, pineapple, and taro (I’ve heard about this but have yet to see it).¬†

McDonald’s provides a good idea of what local tastes are even if it is a “McDonalized” version. ¬†The fact that McDonald’s localizes for every region and country makes it that more interesting to visit when traveling even if I never visit one back in the States.

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Mega!

Remember when I said that I have everything I need here….? This is one of the reasons I can find anything I want – including Swedish meatballs! Rumor has it that this mall is the largest “horizontal mall” in Southeast Asia although I haven’t found proof of it. ¬†It seems like a standard sized mall in the US but with it’s own Ikea. ¬†There is a gym, a large grocery store, and a large home store.

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Thai Wedding

During my first week in Thailand I was staying at a Hotel that hosts weddings so I got to poke around a bit. It was quite interesting to see the different styles and of course the humongous fake cake! One morning I got to witness the tradition of the groom’s family bringing offerings to the bride’s family. There was an enormous procession of people who approached the hotel. The bride’s family was waiting at the door to receive the groom and his large entourage complete with drums. Family members of the bride were staked out in different areas of the hotel and the groom had to greet and provide offerings to each of them before he could see the bride. It was wonderful to watch.

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