London to Bangkok, getting ill, changing plans, moving on
After spending Christmas at home and getting our fill of cold, dark days, we found ourselves in the British Airways Club Lounge at Heathrow, awaiting our flight from London to Bangkok. We broke all our rules for flying and arriving at our destination with clear (non-hungover) heads and opted for some pre-flight, daytime beer drinking, getting further caught up in the excitement of flying back to South East Asia.
We took our seats on the plane and ordered champagne cocktails (more sensible rule breaking) but safe in the knowledge that Club World flights with flat beds complement champagne cocktails well and are a perfect combination to get through a 12 hour flight from London to Bangkok (this is a tried and tested theory from us). We’re very lucky to travel this way (a result of some successful travel hacking wizardry) and before long we were being woken up with vegan breakfasts before landing in Bangkok.
British Airways Club World – nice 🙂
We could smell the warmth as we stepped off the plane; we could see the sunshine. Memories of landing in South East Asia at this exact time of year for the last 17 years came flooding back. Perhaps this giddiness goes some way to explain why we stupidly forgot to look at where we were staying and how to get there. Even after 2 years of travel we still occasionally make mistakes like this, resulting in a wasted hour trudging around Bangkok’s BTS and Metro systems as we re-traced our steps to get to the station we should have got off at had we not been day dreaming and just being generally excited to be back in town. We dragged our bags in stifling heat, up and down stairs whilst the jet-lag started to set in.
Ah the joys of travel
We were staying in a new (for us) part of town this time round, at the very hip and cool So Sofitel Bangkok near Lumpini Park (more about that here) and we had plans. Big plans. A well crafted list of far too many places to eat out at, a couple of day trips and market visits, maybe even revisiting the Grand Palace after all these years; in short, we were going to squeeze every last drop out of our 6 day stay in the city, with a new zest for life created by spending the winter in the freezing cold.
We started off well with Paul managing to meet up with the Southampton FC Thailand Fan Club to watch the match (Southampton won 1-0 against Manchester United) and give them shirts that had been donated by their fellow fans living in less sunny climates.
Meeting with some of the Southampton FC Thailand Fan Club
Then Paul got ill, the weather turned cold (some of the coldest weather in Thailand in recorded history?!) and our plans got stopped in their tracks. We spent most of our 6 days recovering, having massages from Thai women whose tiny frames seem to trick us into thinking they would be gentle with us (they weren’t) and watching the entire season of Making A Murderer in about 3 days flat (that series is compulsive).
There was some gentle pottering around the park where our suspicions about an impending vegan takeover of the planet were fuelled as we randomly spotted a vegan athlete working out in the park. We looked at statues of elephants.
We loved the elephants in Lumpini Park
We ate as much vegan food as we could get our hands on (but not as much as we had planned). Our vegan eating included a couple of trips to ‘Veganerie’, the awesome all vegan cake shop which no visit to Bangkok is complete without stopping by. Don’t believe us? Read why here. We ate favourites from ‘May Veggie Home’ (read more about this favourite vegan destination here) and squeezed in some street food from the Silom Road night market.
Filling up on vegan street food in Bangkok’s Silom Road night market
And then our 6 days was suddenly over.
Sometimes travel is like this; you arrive at a destination full of excitement, hope and dreams and then life intervenes and stops you doing what you had planned. It’s frustrating but it’s just the way it is; all you can do is readjust your plans and move on. No point holding on to disappointment.
When we left head south to Hua Hin for a few days of vegan luxury and raw food classes, it’s fair to say we felt like we had unfinished business in Bangkok.
Luckily for us though, we’ll most certainly be back.
Bangkok days drawing to an end, we’ll be back soon for sure