It's too hot and humid to walk anywhere if you care about how you will smell when you get there. You will sweat. A lot.
In an all out effort to maintain the image of good personal hygiene, I have found myself in an every day battle with travel and how to get to where I'm going without sweating like a "not so sin free lady of the night in church".
Public transportation in this country is...well it just "is". It's everything if you dont have a car or motorcycle. It's a seemingly complex and multi-stepped task to get anywhere unless you're willing to lose some $$ to the meter. If you choose not to use a taxi (or tuk tuk or motor bike) your modes
of transportation are buses, subways, skytrains and your own two feet.
Let's say you made the personal decision to move to Asia. To win the sweat battle you would take a bus to the nearest subway stop, turning the 20 minute sweatfest known as walking into a 4 minute air conditioned (or at worst fanned) bus ride. I find that using 8-15 baht is worth it to still feel like that shower I took 2 hours ago was not taken in vain.
Once you're at the subway, IF it has a stop on its route that's right where you wanna be, well super.
If not, you take it to the nearest BTS (haven't figured out those letters but it's a sky train) station to whisk you to anywhere you want to go. The BTS is really the luxury way to travel here. Air conditioned, goes fast, smells nice...almost relaxing if you can find a place to sit.
So today I woke up craving Subway and something from Starbucks. I haven't eaten a real meal in 5 days. I was going to make it happen.
To get to Subway and Starbucks I took bus #92 from my street to the subway station where I rode the train 7 stops to Sukumvit (a popular "Westerners" area of BKK) and then got on the BTS from there to go to Siam Paragon (biggest shopping mall/movie theatre/dining facility/"anything you want it to be baby" I've ever seen) which I know has a Subway right next to a Starbucks. It took me an hour and 9 minutes.
Next time you go to Taco Cabana or make that late night Whataburger run, or you happen to hit every red light on Valley Mills on your way to Chipotle, remember I'm in Asia, and I'd have to plan at least half my day around taking the trip to get to said food, and deciding if I really really wanted to go there because travel time is the same to Dallas and back, is a chore in and of itself.
Every weekend when I skype or text Claire Gubernator she asks "So what are you gonna do today?" which in my mind I answer with "Ferb, I know what we're gonna do today!" even though most weekends the thought of how long it will take me to travel to get a frappe and a turkey sandwich with lite mayo is enough to keep me posted up in my bed starting that next disk of "Friends". (P.S. Reese family: I'm on Season 8 already but never fear! I plan on starting the whole series over again after October!)
So as you're sitting in your nice, clean, air-conditioned car... think of me and smile.
Because you're not in Asia, and that light is about to turn green.
Sanuk and Sawadee y'all,
P.S. This is where I ended up instead of Subway because I used the word Chipotle in my blog...So then I wanted a burrito.
- from Jen's iPhone