To continue the story of our escapades through Thailand….
View of Bangkok from one of its many canals
While Bangkok is a huge metropolitan city (population around 12 million), it has a unique blend of downtown skyscrapers and wooden family homes hugging the banks of the canals.
Houses along the canal
And, of course, temples
As we were floating along the canals in a long-tailed boat, we came upon a gorgeous orchid farm…
… if you don’t already know, I love photographing flowers…
Flags of the king, religion and country
This temple was beautifully adorned in pieces of painted pottery
These boundary stones are placed as a barrier between royal religious sites and the rest of the world
An appropriate posture refers to not pointing the soles of your feet towards the Buddha
Buddha's feet inlaid with mother of pearl
We then visited the royal summer palace; a surreal jump onto a European boulevard.
Tiled floor inside a Chinese pagoda at the palace
Another day trip from Bangkok was visiting Ayutthaya Province, a former capital of Thailand (from 1350 – 1767 when it was destroyed by the Burmese).
People ceremoniously cover the Buddha with blankets
When the Burmese invaded in 1767 they removed the heads from all of the Buddha statues; the statues were covered in gold and the Burmese were trying to determine if they were solid gold. The Burmese melted the outer shells and removed them so now only the concrete and brick is exposed.
And then there are always the markets…. 🙂
Green mango; sour, so they dip it in a mixture of sugar and chili
That night we had the exceptional experience of going to the sky bar overlooking all of Bangkok (an extremely luxurious, high end place that was a really fun one night outing!). Unfortunately it was difficult to get very good shots.
Of course we had to take a ride in a bright pink taxi 🙂
Dinner after the sky bar
This solid gold Buddha (and apparently the world's largest solid gold statue) remained intact after the Burmese invasion in the 1700s because it was encased in concrete; it wasn't discovered until 1955 when a chip of the concrete fell from the nose as the statue was being moved, exposing the solid gold Buddha underneath.
The Buddha is depicted slightly differently in Thailand than in Cambodia
This type of outside food stall is commonly seen throughout Cambodia and Thailand; popular for lunch
If you can believe it there was a 7/11 literally on every street corner in Bangkok; I have yet to see any in Cambodia
Statue of a beggar at Wat Phra Kaeo, the most sacred Buddhist temple in Thailand. This temple houses Bangkok's emerald Buddha
Mural on the inside walls of the royal palace in Bangkok
And suddenly, like the summer palace, you step into the inner section of the royal palace and you confuse your surroundings with a European vacation
With a bit of Asian flair
Royal guards and all
And finally.... I didn't know whether to cry or bring her home 🙂