Martial Arts & Fitness

The Real Siam

I’ve always wanted to get out of the major cities and see some of the many historic landmarks in Thailand.  Although Ayutthaya is still a city, it isn’t as big as Bangkok or as crowded as Pattaya.

Brandon keeping us entertained on the drive between Ayutthaya and Bangkok

Kiate’s daughter Tina and her friend Top were nice enough to drive us to Ayutthaya and show us around for the day.  The drive wasn’t too bad from Bangkok, about an hour or so, could have been longer, but we were busy exchanging cultural differences, and dubbing Brandon with a new nickname, Mr. Sim Som.  I know I probably didn’t spell it correctly, but it’s Thai and it fits him perfectly.

First thing is first, we went straight to riding elephants.  Yes, you can really ride an elephant in Thailand, but I don’t think any animal rights activists would enjoy it, as your elephant is constantly bonked on the head with a stick when it starts going off course.  The 15 minute ride was perfect, as it feels pretty much like being on a boat at sea.  I don’t have any pictures because I was busy taking video, but the upload time here is ridiculous, so you will see it when we get home. :)

We saw many of the ruins throughout the city, much were destroyed during the battles between Siam and Burma, as well as mother nature.  One of the more shocking things to see, is the hundreds of Buddha statues which were decapitated during the Burmese raids.

The head, being the holiest part of the human body in Buddhist belief, much less decapitating Buddha’s head….Many of the heads also held gold and other treasures, so not only were they Burmese insulting Siam in one of the greatest ways possible but they were also robbing them.

After riding elephants and visiting temples, Tina and Top took us to a floating market.  This isn’t like the Bangkok floating market, and the atmosphere was pretty cool.  Everything was made of bamboo, including the walkways, which barely kept your feet out of the water at some points.

After heading to the temples and the floating market, we had some delicious noodles at a local( but safe ) noodle shop.  We had big noodles and little noodles, the bigger noodles( pronounced sen-yai ) were much more in my taste. 

As you can imagine, the use of the phrase “big noodle” can come to many funny uses. ;)

After food in Ayutthaya, we decided to head back to Bangkok, as it would be a bit of a drive with traffic once we got back.  Top stopped to show us the fresh rat cart on the side of the road.

We went to the mall, I forget what the name of it is, but Kiate’s store and office is in this mall.  I did not realize this until we were in front of their store and Kiate’s wife was sitting behind the counter.

Kiate’s wife was so kind to us, she gave Brandon, Roy and I, Luang Pu Thuat pendants.

Roy and I got 2 of 5000 of these pendants, there was a big ceremony, which 5000 monks attended.  And after the ceremony, all 5000 monks made these pendants to commemorate the ceremony and Luang Pu Thuat.  As you can imagine, this pendant is much sought after by boxers as it is a symbol of very good luck.

We finished the night with dinner at the BBQ place across the street from our hotel and called it a day.

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