Wednesday, 30 April 2008

Songkran in Bangkok!!!

Songkran is like Thai new year. This year it falls on 13th to 15th April. Usually, they celebrate it by blessing people with a little water and some talcum powder (like bedak sejuk). Somehow that "little" blessing became a huge scale war!! Day 1 = at Khao San road. The little back alleys at Khao San is quieter and less crowded. You can sit at a cafe (outdoor) and shoot at all the passer by. And free refil of water by the cafe owner. If you sit further inside, you can keep dry to eat your food. Nice place to go if you don't feel like having an all out war!

Shooting passer by is fun! Getting shot by them is also fun.

Night falls, and time to go to Khao San road. The police are on standby here, preparing for chaos. Unfortunately their van is not free from any smudges of talcum!

Preparing for war!!

This is Khao San road and its madness. And remember... people never just throw water at you, its always ICE water! brrrr!!

Day 2 = Pat Pong and Silom area. This place is also madness!! So crowded you hardly have any place to walk. You just have to push through the crowds. And good luck avoiding getting smudged with powder to drenched in ice water - there's simply no place to run! At Pat Pong area. This are was the less crowded place...

People selling water and talcum powder at cut-throat prices. Some places sells ice water even.

In case you're not completely drenched yet, there's a little fire truck to spray water at you!

Let the war begin!

Drive-by shootings at Silom.

I must say that the Thais are really polite. They'll even ask permission before smudging you with talcum, and when they do it, they do it gently...

There's an arms trade going on all along Silom road. Smaller ones costs about 100, medium about 300, and the big stuff about 500! I have mine for sale... who wanna buy?

Day 3 and the rest = stay indoors and try to avoid getting wet. 2 days getting fully soaked for several hours is enough Songkran for me! Next year, I'll try to escape from Bangkok!

Saturday, 26 April 2008

More China Pics

Some randome pics from my Beijing trip... Modern art in China Agricultural University

Popular game in Beijing (my Mom used to play that too!)

Falling down is forbidded in the Forbidden City

Don't go to the Forbidden City on a public holiday!! Absolutely crawling with millions of tourists!

Just yet another spoilt brat at the Forbidden City

Yogurt on a window still
Lake view at night

Chinese people are really patriotic... trained since young.

What are they doing in the Forbidden City?

Curious little one...

Guess where this is?!

Yet another man walking his dog in Beijing city

Beijing bird

Rickshaw along the lake

This last picture to close the Beijing set... taken from the rooftop of a little restaurant near Hou Hai (if I remember the name correctly)

Monday, 21 April 2008

Bangkok Torch Relay

April 19th 2008 - the Olympic Torch relay passes through the streets of Bangkok. Here are some pictures of the event. Many spectators gathered on the side of the street to witness this event.Many people were actually the major sponsors - namely Coca Cola, Samsung and Lenovo.Many of them were patriotic Chinese people.Many police were there (2000 of them) to stand by in case of riots...and to keep order... make sure everyone is behind the lines. There were "Special" police from China. This one was running ahead of the torch, making sure the line was clear. Here comes the Torch!!! Yes, surrounded by photographers and many many Chinese supporters. This was as much as I could see. Yes, even choppers were circulating the area. Of course, there were peaceful gatherings of Pro-Tibet supporters... somewhere in the middle of the route. And they gathered in front of the United Nations building. Pro-China supporters gathered opposite the road to the protestors... chanting things like "We Love Tibet" and "One China, One Family" or "Liar! Liar!"
Police were there to keep everything in check. Especially for the Pro-Tibet demonstrators.But there were still a few pro-China supporters who crossed the line. Then the Torch parade comes... lead by... a Thai clown?!?!? Followed, of course, by all the major sponsors.
Then followed by hoards of Chinese supporters - who followed the torch for all the 10+km. In fact, they crowded over the torch, that I didn't even realise the torch passed by this area! Note the police baracade to prevent them from reaching the protestors.Then it was followed by the bus carrying all the torch bearers - who actually waved and gave the thumbs up to the protestors (though I doubt it was because they were supporting the demonstrations, they were just ignorant of what was happening). Then when everyone dispersed, this man sat down with his "Anty China" speeches... not that I understand any of it, it was in Thai.
Well, anyway, in case any of you are thinking about all the protesting, here's a little background about Tibet and the Dalai Lama. And here's the link for the Bangkok protestors. And for those interested, a link to the KL Pro-Tibet people. Becareful of simply supporting blindly...

Saturday, 12 April 2008

The GREAT Wall

What better way to go up the great wall, than to ride the BEST cable car?
Yes, the white stuff you see on the mountain is SNOW! Yes, in April!

Wall graffity.