I’ve lived in Thailand for about 7 months now, since August 2010, but the first time I visited Thailand was in August 2004 with my younger sister, Marlee. We went to Koh Phagnan for a few days, hit Bangkok for 1 day, then went back to Japan, where I was living. It was a whirlwind trip.
This time, my sister came with her husband and we all stayed together in my small one-bedroom apartment. I was worried that this would cut into my sitting-around-in-my-underwear-in-front-of-the-fan time–which it did–but that’s okay.
I like having guests. I always thought I would be a good tour guide because I have lots of opinions about things and I like to show off information I have about a place. Plus, if you have guests, they don’t know anything and they’re at your mercy. They’re like kids; you can mold their minds into whatever you want. Best restaurant? BOOM! Best bar? THERE IT IS! Worst food? Don’t even tell them about it and they won’t eat it! Problem solved! It’s all kinds of awesome.
Of course, the downside to having guests, especially in a foreign country, is that they rely on you for everything. Fair enough; I relied on my friends for a long time when I first got here. If my Thai were super fantastic and wonderful, this wouldn’t be as much of a problem. As it is, my Thai is pretty crap. I can usually get a taxi driver to understand where I want to go and I can usually order food and make myself understand. That’s about the extent of my Thai ability, but it’s generally enough for me to get by.
As everybody knows, though, when you have people looking at you expectantly, no cab drivers will understand you and all things you order will come to you with problems, which you are then powerless to resolve. And you look like an idiot, and you have to protest, I swear that I have never had this problem! And they’re like, It’s okay. It happens to everybody sometimes. And then everybody is slightly annoyed and embarrassed for the other person, but can’t say anything about it because that’s rude.
Anyway, I love having visitors, and if you want to visit, I will probably give you my bed and sleep on the couch. Because that’s the kind of host I am. Just saying.
The rest of the trip in photos:
Day 1: Street noodles, Chatuchak Market, and a recording of Bangkok Podcast, which I’m pretty sure my mother still has not figured out how to listen to. Also, Chatuchak Market on the weekend makes me a nervous wreck. It’s about 10 billion degrees, half of Thailand is there, and it’s a total maze.
Day 2: Wat Po, Wat Arun, walking around until we have sweat off 20 pounds, and then introducing my sister to mango sticky rice. You’re welcome, by the way, Marlee!
Days 3-5: Sitting on the beach in a lovely resort in Phuket. I read, like, 6 trashy beach reads and took naps. And we ate some food. Good times.
Day 6: Thai cooking class!
Day 7 (Saturday): We send Matt off to the airport by himself because he had to leave at 6 a.m. and we were both lazy. I was like, Thanks for traveling 24 hours to come see me! Later, sucker! Marlee and I spend the entire day staring off into space, with me occasionally asking if she wants to do something and Marlee assuring me that she is too tired. We leave the apartment for about 10 minutes to get some noodles.
We decide Saturday afternoon that we should go to Chiang Mai the following morning, so I book tickets on Air Asia. Only I book the complete wrong times and Air Asia are total jerks to me and I hate them forever although I will have to fly them again because they are so cheap. Bastards. I put Marlee in charge of the hotel because I’ve already screwed up the flights.
SO Day 8 rolls around: We’re at the airport, trying to figure out our hotel reservations and it turns out that instead of one room with two beds for two nights, Marlee has booked two rooms with two beds for two nights, and we can’t get our money back. After we laugh hysterically, we start to wonder if maybe this trip was not meant to be.
Well, Day 8 and Day 9: Are awesome. We see some of my friends and walk until our feet are about ready to fall off. Also, we eat khao soi (curry noodle soup) about 15 times in two days because IT’S SO AMAZING.
Day 10: I’m getting tired of writing all this now, and I’m sure the only person left reading is my mother. We eat at a raw food cafe in BKK, which was surprisingly good, although I generally like my food pretty cooked.
Day 11: Fabulous spa day, where we spend 3 hours getting massaged and facialed. For my sister’s last meal in Thailand, we go to 7-11.
Having Guests: 0 Megan: 1
It’s always hard to show people everything you want to in a city and country you love when you just have a limited amount of time. Still, I think I did a decent job of showing them around and forcing them to eat lots of food they’d never tried and all that.
If anybody else wants to visit, let me know! I really do love having visitors…