Sunday, March 11

Hi!  Today we flew from Shanghai to Bangkok and took a riverboat tour around the central Bangkok area.

First, here's how we got from Shanghai to Bangkok - flew over China and Vietnam.

On approach to Bangkok, here's the sights.  Industry and farms primarily.  Some housing is visible below.

In this picture if you look off in the background you'll see some grey lines, that's the Bangkok skyline.  To our surprise, Bangkok is a huge city with many skyscrapers.  We didn't do our research, obviously.

The new airport, which was fine to fly in and out of.

It's the king's 80th birthday and signs wishing him well are evident all over the city.  Many people are also wearing yellow shirts in commemoration of it - check the pictures later on.

A typical highway sign on the way to the city.

The Thais love American food - Dunkin Donuts, McDonalds, Pizza Hut, Burger King, Subway are all well represented.

This little boy was answering nature's call under his mom's watchful eye.

We got to the hotel right before the sunday brunch ended, and we wanted to eat something then go out touring. Here's some of the items we picked off the vast, but, erm, very expensive brunch.  More on that when our accountants are not looking...  Anyway, here is prime rib with asparagus, a thai beef soup, some pastries,

Some excellent risotto, and some prawns.  This was not all just my meal...

The lobby of the Four Seasons

We took the Skytrain, an elevated train which runs through much of downtown (25 Baht or about 73 cents) down to the waterfront where the conceirge told us we could rent a long-tailed boat for a tour.  It was too late in the day for the larger boat tours but this worked out just fine.  I'll post some videos when I get a chance.

The tour took us down the river and up several of the many canals that are offshoots of the river.  Here in the main river is a shipyard with ships under repair.

Barges were being pulled up and down the river, usually 4-6 connected together.  It seemed families lived on some of them, judging from the number of children we saw on them.

Some local housing.

The long-tailed boats used regular car or truck engines with long shafts with propellers on them, and a gear-shift contraption at the top to control speed.  They were very noisy.

There were sights on the river, none of which we stopped at.

There are many temples, or Wats on the river, as well as many images of Buddha. 

The Grand Palace, Wat Pho and Temple of the Dawn are some of the highlights.  On this day we just motored past them but on Monday we went to the Grand Palace.

This is a Chinese temple on the river.

That was the sights for Monday. We didn't go out at night because we  were just beat.  On to Tuesday...