Bangkok, Thailand: "Small World"
July 16, 2002
After Angkor Wat I flew back to Bangkok. I strolled through a large park in the center of the city and practiced my Tai Chi with a Chinese master. I went to the zoo.
I attended Friday evening prayers at the ornate Wat Suthat. A huge gold Buddha and mysterious chanting.
Jeff and I attended a July 4 Independence Day celebration. Hot dogs, Hamburgers, Miller High Life, Bud Lite, and Apple Pie with Dairy Queen a la mode. The U.S. Marines Military Band. The American Ambassador read us a stimulating, motivating and creative letter written by W. (I have my fingers crossed behind my back.)
I saved the best for last. Last December 2001, on the flight from Bangkok to Chiang Mai, I sat next to a lovely Thai man of Chinese ancestry. We had a good conversation and said our good byes when we landed.
This Sunday I decided to attend an organ recital at a Christian church. You know. Try to get a little Western culture midst the Eastern. The organist was from Switzerland and he played Bach and Mendelssohn. The choir from the church also performed. Imagine a spirited gospel choir of Asian men singing "Amazing Grace" and "Onward Christian Soldiers"… in Thai.
At the end of the recital they served some cakes and ice tea. Not one to refuse food, I took part and decided to introduce myself to the Music Director. She spoke perfect English. Before I could finish the sentence, "I am from Miami, Florida," there was a tap on my shoulder and a man said, "I know you." He was none other than the man from the flight to Chiang Mai last December, seven months ago! He is a member of the choir. Small world or what?
Last night, here at the beach at Hua Hin, I ordered a whole steamed sea bass with spicy lemon-garlic sauce and a lemon squash drink. The outdoor restaurant, one of many, is on the wharf not far from the fishing boats from whence came the bass.
I have had a wonderful month. Some rain, mostly sunny and warm, excellent food.