Bangkok: and many of our previous travellers might remember the ‘Hotel de Bangkok,’ this pleasant little hotel, down a quiet alleyway in the centre of town. It was here, just a handful of months ago, that our last group stayed, shortly before flying into golden Luang Prabang on the banks of the Laos Mekong. It was a thrilling journey that we’re doing again this year.
Yet today, in Bangkok, it is low season. In the tropics, May brings warmer weather which will steadily rise until July to September – and the monsoon showers. When our next group arrives in November it will be just about perfect – once again we’ll enjoy a welcome dinner, the night markets and the frenetic pace of the city, before travelling to the remote – and endlessly exotic corners – of Laos and Cambodia.
Yet today I remember some of our travellers exploring Bangkok’s canals, Thai syle around 20 mph, and smile to myself in recollection.
In addition to today’s pre-monsoon heat, even warmer Thai smiles go by. The wonderful food, my first lunch on arrival – fresh shrimps, salad and vegetables in a potently beautiful Cambodian Kompot pepper sauce is quite superb, on plastic chairs on the side of a main road.
In some ways, such simple, delicious cuisine and setting, provides an outline of life here. There’s an abundance of happiness without the need for complications; people go about their daily chores through joy and engagement with each other. Beautifully lit night markets, racing tuk tuk drivers and chefs battling with woks on every corner; there’s an energy and exuberance to it all; that leaves the West somewhat wilting. If you might like to join our tour this November, and see it for yourself, please let us know.