Thailand has been an adventure loooooong awaited for. Basically ever since I found out that Emily and her family would be moving, I knew I would want to visit her while they lived there. Lots of life things got in the way in the beginning (you know, small things like moving across the country, getting pregnant, having a baby, etc etc). We also didn’t think that Adam would be able to join us on the trip, so I was considering just bringing Axton on the trip. But then I knew I’d feel guilty leaving Rhenner behind because while he might not be old enough to remember the trip in a few years, he is old enough to understand the feeling of getting left behind. Then, we had a change of plans with Adam’s job and suddenly that freed him up to be able to go with us! In the end, we decided to leave Mirabelle with Grandma so we could be more flexible with our adventures and also so we didn’t have to worry about giving her more vaccinations at such a young age.
We had been counting down the days for this trip! Axton and Rhenner didn’t really know what to expect, I think they were mostly just excited to see their friends Liam and Jordyn again! They had grown up with these kids and it had been almost a year since we saw them last. I bet if it had been up to them, they would have been satisfied making this 25 hour trek to get to Bangkok just to sit and play toys with their friends the whole time. That’s not quite what happened though….
The boys did great on the flights, watching movies and playing on tablets pretty much the whole time. I had talked with the boys EXTENSIVELY about….food. I told them they were absolutely not allowed to be rude about any food offered to them, that if they didn’t want to eat it that was fine but that they would be hungry. This was honestly my biggest worry with them – they are so picky!! They demonstrated this from the very beginning: They wouldn’t even touch the food the airlines offered!
Our layover was in Tokyo, so I tried to convince them to at least eat noodles but I only got a few noodles in each of them, and we still had another LONG flight ahead of us. The next flight went well until exactly halfway through it. Axton had finally fallen asleep and in the middle of him being completely out, he woke up uncontrollably screaming and crying about his head hurting. Because he had just been sleeping so hard, it was so difficult to get him to calm down enough to tell us what was wrong. He was begging us to “Get me off this plane!! I want to get off right now!” Of course we felt awful for him and awful for the people around us. The only thing I could think to do was to break one of my adult ibuprofen in half and give it to him. He had a really hard time swallowing it, and I think he ended up kind of chewing it but he was so desperate for relief that he didn’t question it. Once the medicine kicked in, he was able to fall back asleep and he woke up acting as if nothing had happened. It was a little scary for us, but I also knew the kind of pain he was in as I tend to get excruciating headaches on airplanes myself.
We finally made it into Bangkok at one o’clock in the morning and it was such a relief to see our sweet friend Emily waiting for us on the other side of the walkway. I am so grateful that we made this trip with the help of someone who knows how to work taxis, Uber, Thai people and customs…I would have felt completely lost from the very beginning if it wasn’t for her!
We felt the humidity right away. And smelled the…..smells right away, too 🙂 We came back to Emily’s apartment and completely crashed. Well. Mostly. Rhenner was a little wired from his nap on the plane but a little melatonin went a long way with him.
After hanging out all morning and playing and checking out toys, we finally started on our first venture into the city. I told Emily that I forgot that she didn’t just live in Thailand, she lived the CITY LIFE. Catching taxis, riding the air train, walking along crowded streets, passing street vendors. It sprinkled on us for a little bit as we walked to the sky train but even without an umbrella we were fine.
We hopped on a Skytrain….well, more like, we SHOVED our way onto a skytrain as there was no casualness about squeezing our way onto it whatsoever. We could barely see the top of our own kids’ heads! Rhenner was totally groping another man and when I told him he needed to let go of that man’s leg, he definitely spoke English because he started to laugh. I was totally embarrassed but couldn’t help laughing too because the whole situation was just so ridiculous. It’s not often that you are THAT close to that many strangers!
We got off the train to take our next form of transportation: The Chao Phraya Express boats. We were headed to see some temples!
The first temple we stopped at Wat Arun first, which is the Buddhist “Temple of Dawn.” When we arrived, there were multiple signs that said “No shorts!” and I was unfortunately in shorts! I unbuttoned them and pulled them down as far as I could without losing them and they did let me in. However, had the guards determined my shorts were disrespectfully too short, then I could have rented a sarong to cover my legs. This temple was incredible! The designs and columns were so intricate and each one unique, and made of porcelain.
The majority of the signs at the temple were all in Thai, so I really wanted to know more about the temple, its purposes, and its history. I’ve since done a bit of research, but I would have loved to know more about it as I was looking at it in person.
We hopped back on a boat that took us to back to the other side of the river so we could explore the next temple: Wat Pho. Before we got to this temple, though, we stopped at a foodstand and tried our first heavenly batch of Coconut ice cream!! This was the first time the kids had willingly eaten pretty much anything offered to them since we left our house. This little stop has one of my favorite memories from the whole trip: there were three local children playing with the little poppers that you throw onto the ground and make a little pop, and their mom or aunty that was with them told them to share their poppers with our kids. It was so fun to see the children interacting and playing, even though they didn’t speak each other’s language. I didn’t get a picture of it, but I did get a short video clip of it that you’ll have to look for when my video is all put together!!
This is the temple of the (GIANT) Reclining Buddha. Rhenner was literally scared of it (it didn’t help that Adam told him this was the giant from Jack and the Beanstalk….but still, it took some coaxing to get him all the way around the backside of the Buddha and out again.
Besides, Rhenner was totally more into the little kittens that ran free everywhere we went. We had to remind him to not touch or pet the animals and he would just sit there and coo and talk to them. He thought they were the cutest!
Our first day in Bangkok was such a fun city adventure! It was great to start our trip off with something so iconic of Bangkok, yet we were really just getting started. My next post will be our second day in Bangkok and will include a highlight reel of video footage I took in Bangkok! Day two we get out of the city and into the jungle a bit more….stay tuned!