My last day in Thailand, and the end of my extraordinary two-month adventure in the east. Bangkok, Bangkok, Bali, Bangkok. And don't be mistaken here, those three Bangkoks were three completely different trips. At least they all felt very different, and more importantly I felt different. I went from tourist to visitor to resident. It's hard to explain, but if you think about it, there are very distinct lines to be drawn between, and attributes attached to them.
That's what I thought about while I was sitting in the taxi on my way to Siam after my check-out today. I finished packing early, double-checked everything for the third time, exchanged the keys with the deposit that I had left at the check-in, and was then on my way to the post office. My stuff had too much weight and I had neither the nerve nor the time to unpack and reorganize everything. And to be honest, I don't mind spending the extra money for the parcel if in return I can travel a lot lighter.
At Central World I met Ploy for coffee, and Plair joined us for dinner after work. I was superglad to see them one more time before I departed. And I was even happier when I found out about them not being uspet about my mixing up the flight information anymore. We had fantastic Thai food - Phad Thai and three other mysterious dishes that I had to try before I left the country. I forgot their names, but they made me regret having eaten the same thing all the time before.
Time was again racing, we were soon out and down by the street. We caught a cab, and when they said they were coming to the airport I didn't quite know what to say. I managed an honest "thank you" and we got in. The driver was a very young man with very grey hair. He looked a few years younger than me and his hair colour was probably dyed. But when he played funky Thai 트로트 and started singing to them I thought he was maybe like that Esther in the Orphan. Genetic defect and, you know the story.
The ride was taking its time, because rush hour was blocking the streets. It took us twenty minutes to move two kilometers. I was slowly getting worried about missing the flight, started thinking about consequences and options, began calculating expenses for accomodation, food, transportation and of course a new ticket. But then it suddenly started pouring down like crazy, a shower so unexpected that we thought somebody was throwing buckets of water on us. But it was nature, unforeseeable and as strong as ever.
After close to an hour we arrived at Suvarnabhumi Airport. It had stopped storming and the refreshing amazement had turned into a thoughtful melancholy. Instead of looking back on the trip I started thinking about all the things that I have to face now that I'm getting back home. And that made it so much harder to say goodbye to Cartoon, Ploy and Plair who were right there, representing all the great times we had. All the surprises, the million tasty meals, countless cups of coffee. Two months of unbelievable voyage, gone with the snap of a finger. Thank you guys for a truly awesome time.