July 10-24, 2018
15 Days in Bangkok
Location: Adventure Hostel, Bangkok, Thailand
Checked-In Power Bank (New Delhi Airport)
After a 29-hour stay in India's New Delhi airport due to Spice Jet's incompetence, I was so relieved to get my boarding pass awaiting for my flight with Thai Airways at the boarding gate. I thought India wouldn't let go of me! But as passengers started boarding, the plane staff called me out to get my power bank out of my checked-in luggage - apparently, power banks are hand-carried and not checked-in! I had to run out of the plane together with a cabin crew member and into the luggage room of the airport - it was a looong run! I frantically took out my power bank but had to hand it to airport security - they would not let me have it.
The odd thing is, even though they allow power banks to be hand-carried, they won't allow you to take the power bank back if you left it inside a checked-in luggage! So, they kept my power bank. I don't see the logic in that. I smell something suspicious. Is that going to be 'raffled off' to airport security in their next Thanksgiving party? Is that their new mafia? With just a few minutes left, I couldn't stay to contest their decision. I had to run as fast as I can to board my plane. Goodbye power bank!
Leaving my Smart Phone?
I was relieved to be inside the plane finally! But shortly before they closed the door, I remembered that my phone was still at the boarding gate charging! I forgot all about it when they called me about the power bank. I ran out the plane, telling the flight attendant I left my phone at the boarding gate! I didn't give her a moment to answer - I just dashed-off! Good thing my phone was still there. I ran back to the plane and got seated before they shut the door and the plane took off. Whew!
Given too many close calls, I couldn't relax. I wasn't sure if there was another mishap happening even as the plane was taking off. Did I leave something behind? Are they going to call me for another problem? It wasn't until we left Indian airspace when I felt my troubles with India were all behind me. Whew!
Finally, I could relax. But I couldn't help but think,
"Why was this departure plagued by so many mishaps? Being at the airport for 29 hours, missing 2 flights, losing my power bank and almost leaving my phone behind. Why? Is it me? Or is there a strong message here from my universe? Am I being signaled to stop traveling? That I should settle down?"
After 4.5 hours, we arrived Bangkok. From the Suvarnabhumi Airport, to the city proper was painless with the Airport Link Train (Bht 45) that took me to Phaya Thai BTS station. From there, I transferred to the BTS train and got off at N7 station (Bht 16), Saphan Kwai. My hostel, the Adventure Hostel was just by the station. Finally, I could take a shower and get some decent sleep. I haven't had any decent sleep or fresh clothes since I left Dharamshala, India 2 days ago!
Bangkok 30-Day Mini-Life
This is my 4th time in Bangkok and it's still exciting - the food scene, the vibrant city energy, the cool Thais, etc. The trauma from the New Delhi airport felt like a lifetime behind me. I'm already thinking, I can live here! Days before my visa expiration in India, I still didn't know where to go. But when Adventure Hostel accepted my proposal for a barter deal, the die was cast for Bangkok. And since I now make a 30-day mini-life in any destination I go to, it means I stay put in Bangkok for 30 days until my visa expires. But that was to change upon Mike's invite to stay 2 weeks in Chiang Mai.
After 2 years since my last stay, Adventure Hostel hasn't changed much even with its new owners. It's still clean, well-managed and value-packed. At Bht 350 for the bunk bed, it's not the cheapest but you get a lot - train stop location, dorm room a/c, in-bed light and power outlet, coin-operated laundry, roof deck, entertainment center, kitchen, all-day tea-coffee and fridge. It's also great for solo travelers to meet friends but they were mostly Thais who had difficulty with English. If I owned a backpacker hostel, Adventure Hostel would be my template.
$50 on 30 Days in Bangkok?
It's good that I didn't have to worry about my accommodation. But I landed in Thailand with just $50! This gets me a few days of food. I had to pull-out all the stops to make money fast. I wrote to many yoga studios for a gig, wrote and knocked on some cafes and hotels for web deals, etc. - but nothing happened. It was like breaching a city wall. To stretch my money, I only ate out for dinner - there was always the Bht 40 meal (~$1.50). Breakfast and lunch would be food from the grocery - bread, butter, milk, bananas, nuts, honey and peanut butter (all healthy choices). I got by with a minimum of expense. I didn't leave the hostel except for short walks around the neighborhood - I didn't even want to spend for the train or bus.
I was already down to my last $2.50 (Baht 80) when I found a buyer for my remaining Bitcoin Cash. That was just too close for comfort. I was on my last 2 meals! I still didn't make money after that, and I was thinking, "What would have happened to me if Mike didn't buy by Bitcoin Cash?". Again, it's a rescue at the very dying seconds - a telltale sign my universe is playing with me again...but this time, I no longer find it amusing. Of course, I'm still thankful. But I have to change things around - I cannot hack this cliff-hanger indefinitely.
The money was much needed, but it was a band-aid solution. It was only enough for about 2 weeks. I still had to pound the pavement and sharpen my pencil before it runs out.
Running Out of Money
The last time I ran out of money while traveling was many years ago in Davao when I had to pawn my GPS for transport money. I also ran out of money in Singapore, but a friend came out of nowhere and offered me her place in Ho Chi Minh City. Always, something happens at the last minute to save me. Still, my mind was racing non-stop and it exhausted me to the point where I had to choose a life of abundance over poverty-by-choice.
Exploring the Saphan Kwai Area
Even if I had money, I wouldn't be going to the touristy spots. It excites me more to find a decent and vibrant neighborhood I could call home (for 30 days). At Saphan Kwai area, I would explore the many side-streets and lose myself into the neighborhood. Usually, I find an array of street-side eating places or a night market. The element of discovery was always a highlight. It's not as animated as its neighboring Ari, but my area had decent cafes and restos as well.
Nothing Touristy, All Business
I wish I got to go around Bangkok a little more beyond exploring Saphan Khwai, but my mind just wasn't there. For the most part of my 2 weeks, I stayed in the hotel writing marketing pitches and updating old webpages for responsive display. The only touristy stuff I've done was to walk around Chatuchak Market, which was walking distance from the hostel. And a visit Terminal 21 again. If I were out, I'd be pounding the pavement, knocking on hotel doors, or cafes, massage parlours or dental clinics, talking to owners about my web service. Bangkok is particularly difficult with this. Business owners hardly understand English so there is that reluctance to do business with me - a complete stranger who is even a farang (foreigner). Furthermore, the energy wasn't there.
Long Shapely Legs on a Mini-Skirt
With 1 month in Nepal and 2 months in India (where a white female friend was slapped for walking around on a tank top exposing her shoulders), I didn't know what I was missing until I saw it here in Bangkok - long shapely legs on a mini-skirt. Yes, mundane as it is, it is one of the most visually sexy thing I've seen after 3 months in a country where women are restrained. It was a joyeous celebration of the feminine - and Thai women are quite attractive to begin with.
This particular visit was direction-changing for me. With dwindling cash, my racing mind was painted into a corner where I had to recognize the path being blazed for me - to take a life of abundance. Now, I have to leave my life as a renunciate and begin one from a position of abundance and exercisable options. If abundance is there for the taking, it will happen. However, if it's not in the cards, it won't happen despite the intention. I can't even second-guess how things unfold. I have a feeling the unraveling happens in Chiang Mai.
Despite being challenging, Bangkok still provided (through people I seem to have a karmic connection with) - a barter roof over my head, buyer for my Bitcoin Cash, friends I still managed to be with, and of course, new ones who may be part of my looming horizon. For everything there was, THANK YOU BANGKOK ❤❤❤ !!!
YOGA by Gigit | Learn English | Travel like a Nomad | Donation Bank
Reader Comments:David Lloyd
(July 30, 2018) Hey Gigit, "Life is meant to be easy, why do we make it so hard" by Jon Jandai, Ted Talk. Jon and his wife live close to Chang Mai. You should visit, great couple really making a difference.
(July 27, 2018) That same thing happened to me with the power bank recently flying from India to Thailand!!!
(July 27, 2018) Did you get the power bank back?
(July 27, 2018) NO! They were like "you can get it when you come back to New Delhi" ... UMmm OK?!?
(July 27, 2018) Miss you my friend, when are you coming home? ❤❤❤
(July 27, 2018) Judith, miss you too. 🙂 No idea when the wind takes me back to Cebu, but I'll just surprise you ❤❤❤ + 1
(July 27, 2018) Thank you so much. I will always pray for you
(July 27, 2018) You are brave! Serious as a heart attack!
(July 27, 2018) ...a less assured mortal might actually have one 🙂
(July 27, 2018) Haha! 🙂 Not u
(July 27, 2018) ...only because I have already been clearly assured by my benevolent universe in no uncertain terms that I am in good hands 🙂
Next stop: 2 Weeks in Chiang Mai
Bangkok Blogs by TheLoneRider
- Bangkok in Pictures Mar 17-21, 2021
- Bangkok for Passport Renewal Mar 17-21, 2021
- Bangkok with $19 Dec 8-11, 2018
- 30 Days - Goodbye Bangkok Nov 8, 2018
- Revolving Peoplescape of Bangkok Oct 8 - Nov 8, 2018
- Food and Friendship at Dalad Vietnamese Oct 8 - Nov 8, 2018
- Movie Review: First Reformed (2017) Nov 6, 2018
- Doing Online Work at The Work Loft Nov 5, 2018
- Window Seat [His Precious] Nov 1, 2018
- Surreal Odyssey at Bangkok Float Center Oct 29/31, 2018
- Bangkok Halloween with Rinna and Steve Oct 27, 2018
- Push-Ups Oct 22/24, 2018
- Pad Thai at Thip Samai, Bangkok Oct 16, 2018
- Birthday Walkabout Oct 16, 2018
- Coming to Terms with Donations Oct 14, 2018
- Feelin' Da Blues at Adhere the 13th Blues Bar Oct 12, 2018
- Visiting the Grand Palace of Thailand Oct 12, 2018
- A Web Mandate in Bangkok Oct 8, 2018
- 29 Days in Bangkok: Thank You and Goodbye Aug 27 - Sep 24, 2018
- Calling the Bangkok Police Sep 23, 2018
- Movie Review: Mindfulness and Murder (2011) Sep 22, 2018
- Yoga Inversions at Now's Fitness Gym Sep 19, 2018
- Flow Yoga with Teacher Kea at Now's Fitness Sep 18, 2018
- Movie Review: Under Construction (2015) Sep 15, 2018
- Walking Tour of Little India Sep 15, 2018
- Vinyasa Yoga with Teacher That at Now's Fitness Sep 14, 2018
- Abs Workout with Teacher San at Now's Fitness Sep 13, 2018
- Vinyasa Yoga with Teacher That at Now's Fitness Sep 14, 2018
- Abs Workout with Teacher San at Now's Fitness Sep 13, 2018
- Exercise Ball Workout with Teacher Bie at Now's Fitness Sep 11, 2018
- Exploring the Amphawa Floating Market Sep 9, 2018
- Exploring the Tree-Engulfed Wat Bang Kung Temple Sep 9, 2018
- Parting of the Maeklong Railway Market with a Passing Train Sep 9, 2018
- Exploring Damnoen Saduak Floating Market Sep 9, 2018
- Horse Racing at the The Royal Bangkok Sports Club Sep 8, 2018
- Fight Class with Teacher San at Now's Fitness Sep 7, 2018
- Exploring the Bangkok Art Book Fair 2018 Sep 6, 2018
- Circuit Training with Mild at Now's Fitness Sep 5, 2018
- Gentle Flow Yoga with Nuch at Now's Fitness, Bangkok Sep 4, 2018
- A Yogi Lost in a Modern Gym - Now's Fitness Sep 3, 2018
- Abundance at On Nut, Bangkok Aug 30-Sep 1, 2018
- Outside Looking In Aug 29, 2018
- Back in Bangkok After 5 Weeks Aug 27, 2018
- 15 Days in Bangkok July 10-24, 2018
- Peoplescape: Bangkok July 10-24, 2018
- Hatha and Yantra Yoga Fusion July 10-24, 2018
- Revisiting Terminal 21 Mall, Bangkok July 23, 2018
- Rope Skipping, 4mins Full-on July 22, 2018
- Sunday Visit to Chatuchak Weekend Market July 17, 2018
- Fork on the Road: Abundance or Poverty by Choice? July 16, 2018
- Loving Bangkok All Over Again Feb 22-26, 2016
- Hotel Review: Adventure Hostel Bangkok July 11, 2018
- Hotel Review: Riva Surya Bangkok Oct 20, 2014
- Exploring the Shopping Malls of Bangkok Oct 6-20, 2014
- Bangkok's Street Food Delight Oct 6-20, 2014
- Bangkok Revisited 3 Oct 6-20, 2014
- A First Timer in Bangkok December 31, 2005 - January 3, 2006
SPA / WELLNESS
Bangkok Cost Index
as of Sep 4, 2018: US$1 = Baht 32 = Php 53
- Bht 60 sm, 90 big one mug draft beer
- Bht 13 1.5 liter drinking water
- Bht 220 one hour massage
- Bht 60-80 muesli breakfast
- Bht 60-80 tom yum soup in modest eatery
- Bht 25-30 coffee
- Bht 30-50 pad thai
- Bht 350 Adventure Hostel lodging
- Bht 20-30/load laundry, coin operated machine
- Bht 7 bus ride
Transport Maps of Bangkok
- Chao Phraya Express, MRT, BTS, Khlong boats, Airport Link
- Bus Routes: 1-14
- Bus Routes: 15-30
- Bus Routes: 32-49
- Bus Routes: 50-70
- Bus Routes: 71-88
- Bus Routes: 501-516
- individual bus routes
Bangkok to Chiang Mai by Train from Bang Sue Train Station
For more train info: Bangkok to Chiang Mai trains - departing from Hua Lamphong - MRT (Bangkok)
(I'm using Bang Sue as a starting point because I was closer to it, but you may be closer to the Hua Lamphong station)
- take the MRT train to Bang Sue Station. Take the #1 Exit to the north provincial trains
- Proceed to Counter 2. You will see an information booth, a train schedule chart and the ticket counter. Choose the train and pay at the ticket counter.
- daily train schedule:
- 8:48am - #7 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 7:30pm, not sleeper, B638
- 2:06pm - #109 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 4:05am, sleeper
- 6:31pm - #9 Premium Train, arrive Chiang Mai 7:15am, sleeper, B938 upper deck, B1038 lower deck
- 7:56pm - #13 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 8:40am, sleeper, B768 upper deck, B838 lower deck
- 10:22pm - #51 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 12:10pm, sleeper, 3rd class B270 (non sleeper), 2nd class B438, B728 upper deck, B798 lower deck
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