The Big Adventure Started With A Few Mis-Steps
Last night I arrived in Bangkok.
It was not the nicest journey. Theary booked us flights from Phnom Penh (Cambodia) to Bangkok with Air Asia. In case you are not aware of that airline, they are on the cheap end of the spectrum.
The flight was delayed 40 minutes and no announcement was made. Therefore we arrived 40 minutes late into the old airport which is used by Air Asia. It’s really not a good airport. It’s overcrowded and the lines for immigration were very long.
There may have been 40 or so lines each with around 50 to 60 people waiting and busy on their phones.
Each line has a person processed about every 2 minutes, it seems like an hour though.
I got through Immigration and went to the carousel to to pick up our two suitcases. As it had taken quite awhile to get through Immigration the baggage had been on the carousel for some time.
I could see that where the carousel returns back out to the loading area, there had been some sort of obstruction caused by one or two large suitcases.
the crowded, hot and very slow moving immigration hall at the old airport in bangkok, avoid it
They were blocking all the luggage behind them which had resulted in all the bags being tipped off the carousel and onto the floor in an ever increasing twisted pile of suitcaes, backpacks and other assorted items.
I looked around for some staff and saw a couple of them studiously not looking in the direction of the suitcase carnage.
I went over there and worked my way through the cases and got to those causing the blockage and cleared that. By then there were hardly any bags left on the caoursel. found our two and went to wait for Theary.
When she joined me we went through the green “nothing to declare” part of the Customs area. It would have been a drug smugglers dream come true, not a customs official in sight anywhere. So that was a breeze.
We bought Thai SIM cards for our phones and then joined the long long lines for taxis. We were both headed in different locations as Theary was going to go to her brothers house and I was going to take all the bags to the hotel. I was already running late for a meeting with a client.
the awfully slow moving taxi lines at the old airport in bangkok, totally avoid this airport
The taxi system at the new, really modern airport in Bangkok is brilliant, the wait time is usually less than 1 minute. That’s not the case at the Don Meuang airport which is really only used by budget airlines.
It’s a matter of waiting for taxis to arrive, park and for the driver to walk into the room and present himself to the “taxi rank” people who then assign him to a waiting passenger. It’s crazy and takes ages.
Eventually a taxi was assigned ot me and I trundled off with 2 suitcases, 1 laptop bag and a small backpack. Away we raced into the night. All was going quite well until we only had about a kilometer to go to my destination.
We ground to a stop. Meanwhile I’m chatting on Messenger with my son, Kris and my client who is on Skype. I’m trying to get them both to meet up and keep each other company until I can arrive. It was like herding cats.
The traffic was absolutely horrendous and we were on the freeway offramp. In the last 30 minutes we had moved about 100 meters. When it rains in Bangkok, the terrible traffic becomes a real nightmare.
Finally we begin to get moving and I get to the hotel, check in seems ot take forever. You know how things are when you are stressed and in a rush. I go up to the suite and dump the bags, race back down to the ground and out the door to the hotel next door where Kris and my client meet me in the reception area.
My client is happy to see me and gives me a bottle of Johnny Walker Double Black as a gift as we make our way into the Bangkok night for much anticipated dinner, drinks and a chat.
It’s all good. Bit of a misstep to start off the adventure but, it needs to be remembered not everything goes to plan and thats what life is…it’s what happens while you’re busy making other plans. I’m led to believe John Lennon said that
The night turned out well and I made a deal worth $31,200 and a bottle of very nice Scotch. My client got what he wanted, my son got a free meal and drinks. So like I said all good.
One thing I learnt is that cheapest is never really worth it
Today Theary is off wandering the markets and I’m relaxing writing this post for you.
Tomorrow, after lunch we will go to Jomtien Beach near Pattaya for a nice break by the Gulf of Thailand. Kris is on his way to a wedding somewhere north of here and will catch back up with us on Saturday night.
Trust me gentle reader, life is great…. it sure beats the alternative!
More adventures to come. Please share some of your travel events below, I promise to respond to all comments. Also, please help get the word out by hitting the share buttons.