Monday, January 17, 2005

Nothing like hugging after a butt-kicking

Hi all! I found a cheap cyber cafe in this six-story mall in Bangkok. Everything is more Westernized than I expected. They have crammed so many stores, arcades, pharmacy, etc. in here. Not sure if it's more bad than good.

Last night, Somchai and his friend took me and Jen to watch muay thai, a Thai boxing match at one of two boxing stadiums in Bangkok. There are 10 matches and the whole evening starts with boys between the ages of 12-15 facing off. Each match consists of five rounds unless one person gets really knocked out. After four matches, the competitors went higher in age so it got a lot more interesting. According to Somchai, a boxer gets points for using different parts of his body. So, there's kicking as well as hitting involved. After each bout, which usually got pretty intense, the guys always made it a point to hug. I don't know if they do that in American boxing. But, it's funny that Thai manners seem to resonate in everything.

After six matches, the four of us left for this street called Khao Sarn. It's a long street filled with vendors, massage parlors, and people getting their hair braided. It was a major buffet for the eyes and ears. I saw that some food vendors were selling fried bugs and worms. Blech! Sorry, but I'm not a Fear Factor kind of girl. Somchai took us to this really good Thai restaurant called Tom Yum Kung. I think I had the best Thai meal ever had--really yummy coconut milk soup, chicken with cashews and awesome pad thai. After dinner, we went back to the car. In Bangkok, there's often someone lingering by where you park your car. If so, you'd be smart to pay them like 10 bahts to watch your car. Otherwise, it might not be in the same condition you left it. Also, a lot of people leave the car in neutral so if someone needs to get out, they can just push your car up so they have space. I learned this when Somchai got out of the car and single-handedly pushed a parked truck a few inches.

Well, tonight, we are supposed to have dinner at my uncle's because my grandma hasn't seen me since our arrival. Should be interesting, especially if there are old pictures of my father lying around. Sigh...have to get up at 5am tomorrow to catch a 7:30am flight to Siem Reap. Funny how we call it a vacation but we make ourselves get up early for a jam-packed day.

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