Wednesday, May 21, 2008


I went shopping for pants for work yesterday, because I hate all of my work clothes. I found some pretty nice ones that fit well and cost only 30 bucks. Said pants are a size LL. In Japan, I am a big girl. Definitely a first time experience.

Friday, May 9, 2008


Two weeks ago I had the awesome opportunity to go to Thailand at but a moment's notice with my buddy Keisuke. I went from not expecting to go anywhere for Golden Week, to deciding I'd jet over to Bangkok for a few days, literally about 2 weeks before I left -- which is coooool. Hopefully I'm rich one day and can do that sort of thing all the time.

Thailand is beautiful in practically every way. Its tropical, so outside of Bangkok everything is green and lush. Every aspect of the city itself was completely unplanned, so it spreads in every direction, including up, like the yeast on an overgrown agar plate (sorry for the nerdy science reference). I loved the unplanned verve of the city, it made every corner, even the dirtiest most secret ones, seem full of life.

As usual, I'm gonna let the pictures do most of the talking, cause I suck at that anyways.

95% of the population of Thailand is Buddhist. As such, there are a lot of temples, and for each temple theres a giant Buddha. Its sort of insane.

This is the first temple we visited, Wat Arun. Tons of stray cats apparently call the temple home, and the monks even feed them.

Thai architecture is extremely different from Japanese architecture. In Japan, clean lines and earth tones rule. In Thailand, its as if a crayola box vomited on everything. In a good way.

Me and Keisuke, actin' a fool.

Monks in training sitting next to us, whose tranquility balanced out our shenanigans.

Wat Pho is the oldest and largest Buddhist temple in Bangkok. It is home to more Buddha images than any other Bangkok temple and it shelters the largest Buddha in Thailand, the Reclining Buddha. Buddha in the reclining position is said to represent the Buddha's transition to Nirvana.

Buddha toes.

Next up, the Grand Palace.

The interior walls were covered in insanely detailed murals that according to our tour guide are repainted every year.

Repainting. I wonder how many times they have painted that exact wall?

Our tour guide, named Ramin. The tour was for Japanese, so the trip ended up being insanely good Japanese practice for me since no one immediately around me spoke English.

This is a Buddha in the prayer area at Wat Pho. Worshipers can purchase gold leaf sheets to attach to the Buddhas image while praying. I guess making the Buddha more gold increases the chances of your prayer being answered?

Crazy detail.

That day we went to the most amazing Thai buffet in a fancy restaurant in Bangkok. I haven't stuffed myself like that in a long time.

Yes, I have now ridden an elephant!

That trunk must be heavy...

This is Wat Mahathat, at Ayutthaya, about an hour outside of Bangkok. Ayutthaya was a kingdom that existed around 1350, and apparently it rivaled European cities such as Paris in size and wealth. It fell to the Burmese in the 18th century.

Of course, the famous Buddha head, overgrown by a fig tree. This image is revered because it is said the Buddha was sitting under a tree when he reached Nirvana.

After a meal of Thai-style shabu-shabu, we went back to Ayutthaya to see it lit up at night.

In a boat on our way to the floating market, also about an hour out of Bangkok.

Another giant Buddha we saw along the way. I'm telling you, they're everywhere.

The night market. Ahhhhhhh. This is a market that is open until 12pm every night. They have everything, but specifically they have hippie dresses as far as the eye can see. In my heaven, there will be a beach, and some mountains, and the Bangkok night market right in between.

On the last day I went to a spa and had a THREE HOUR SPA TREATMENT for about 100 dollars. I got the works, they bathed me, gave me a Thai massage, did a facial treatment, manicure, pedicure, and washed my hair. I would go back to Thailand just for the massages, any day.

I'm not a huge fan of nail art, but my nails were AWESOME after she was done:
Tropical flowers are definitely the best kind...

Thailand is beautiful. I'm definitely going back and next time I'm hitting the beach. The end.