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    Born to Run by Christopher McDougall - (K) Humorous and thorough history and science behind ultrarunners and long-distance running
    Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela - (K) An autobiography covering his childhood, years as a freedom fighter and incarceration. Inspiring and informative
    The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón - (K&T) A mystery set in Barcelona involving an old book, a failed writer and murder
    Lush Life by Richard Price - A Lower East Side tale of cops, drugs and drinking
    The Chinese by Jesper Becker - (K&T) Modern history of my peeps, from the cultural revolution to the many failed economic and social attempts to move the country forward
    Setting the Table by Danny Meyer - A "how-to" on hospitality and business acumen by the restaurateur behind such NY institutions as the Shake Shack and Union Square Grill
    The Audacity of Hope by Barack Obama - Obama lays out what is wrong with the current government and how, vaguely, to change it.

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Side Notes

It seems K does a pretty good job of travel updates so I thought I’d let you in on a few random things that have happened on the trip and things I’ve learned so far.

1.  I left my brand new (ok, 2 months old), awesome camera that I love in the Asiana lounge in Seoul airport. Luckily, I got it back though I had to travel all the way back to Bangkok airport to get it, but that was a pretty minor inconvience considering.This could have been a nightmare but it wasn’t. Score one for Asiana and Thai Airways

2. The food on Asiana was really good! The food on Thai Airways was almost inedible. Seriously bad stuff and even Kelly turned down a free meal. I had read Thai had gone downhill. Very ironic considering Thailand is known for great food.

3. On that note, Thai food is great! and cheap! I’m sure there are expensive places to eat but we’ve been eating mostly street food, save for our nicest meal yet at Chote Chitr which i found out about on egullet.com and then traced to the NYT. Crispy fried fish (in bread flour), jumbo prawns with some sort of garlicky suce and shells tender enough to eat (like soft shell crab), banna blossom salad in fish-saucey uh dressing? Everybody comes here because of the mentions, everybody gets the same thing. It was still damn good, though pricey at $30 for our 5 course meal with beer. Pictures on flickr.

4. Dinner is generally 40 baht a person at the street vendor. That is roughly $1.25. You go up to the  vendor and if you don’t speak Thai you just point at what meat and noodles you want and then they cook it up. You sit outside with the other Thais and enjoy.

5. Most people will tell you Bangkok is dirty, polluted, with horrible traffic and to get out fast. OK yes, this is all kinda true,while I don’t find it that dirty, it isn’t Universal Studios Walk, Orlando. We liked Bangkok quite a bit. I would go back with somebody who knew of all the great places to eat.

6. The worst part of Bangkok? Khao San Road. This is where all the Brits hang out. It is like England’s version of Puerto Valharta, Mexico. ‘Nuff said.

7. Kelly thinks she can get everything for cheaper. If a taxi offered to take us 100km for $2, K woudl try to get it for $1.75. I don’t know where she comes up with her value judgements but I guess I should’ve seen that coming. Tonight we saved 10 baht (33 cents) by “sharing” a scooter. Yes, that means there were three of us and a backpack on that sucker. I think the driver was as scared as we were. We have sense vowed never to do that again. It is good to know that she values our lives at at least a quarter each now.

8. Tuk-tuk drivers, well, they suck. They price higher than the a/c taxis (which are metered)  and they always try to detour you somewhere else. It is a big hassle and I say don’t use them. This just applies to Bangkok.

That’s all for now. Everything has been pretty smooth.


3 Responses

  1. Good stuff!

  2. I would recommend using the water taxi to get around in Bangkok. It’s fairly cheap and you get a nice view from the water plus you’re not stuck in traffic. And you’re likely to be one of the only tourists on board so you’ll get more of a local flavor. There’s also a cool little street market at the water taxi dock near the big palaces. I didn’t try the water taxi until the end of my stay unfortunately.

    Also make sure you try some different thai massage places. I found one that was like $7 for 90 minutes and it was so relaxing I went back every day for more.

    Don’t ever get in the tuk tuk with the guy who says he’ll give you a free ride. They’ll kidnap you and take you to stores and pressure you to buy something so they can get gas coupons as kickbacks. when you don’t buy anything they will get really angry. Of course if you have lots of time and don’t mind wasting your day riding around with them, you can ride for free.

  3. Hey guys! Your trip is looking awesome sofar!! I love reading the updates and seeing the picts! We miss you both!

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