Hello again, my loyal Blogsters and Blogsterettes,
Last time I called the Loyal Liver Hotel (Royal River) crappy, to be polite. I shouldn’t have been polite. Amazingly, there is a decent original oil painting hanging behind the elderly TV. But that is the only upside of this place, aside from it being only a 5-minute by taxi ride to Yanhee Hospital where I get my hyperbolic high pressure oxygen chamber treatments. The rest of the room is not worth the effort of a photograph. Here is where I am staying:
So I am in this lousy hotel, I’m all checked in and waiting for 5:45 p.m. so I can go back for my second 1-hour chamber treatment. This is not your typical Bangkok, Thailand visit, that’s for sure. If you’ve never been to Thailand, I highly recommend you put it on your Bucket List. I came here for the first time in 1973. The Vietnam War days. I remember flying over Vietnam with fear of being shot down. It was a different time. Pre-HIV and it was a wild place. I was in my early twenties and let’s just say I had my fun. Bicycle rickshaws were practically the only means of transport. They are completely gone now in Bangkok, but you can still find them in Chiang Mai and smaller cities.
Here is one of my favorite memories, and it wasn’t that long ago. Maybe 4 or 5 years ago. I was going across town in Chiang Mai and feeling lazy and possibly a little tipsy, when I saw an old man, a very old man, waiting for a fare sitting atop his bicycle rickshaw. I told him where I was going and off we went. He was heading down a heavily populated street in the heart of Chiang Mai, mostly foreigners seemingly of every nationality sitting outside bars and restaurants. It was when we were right in the busiest, most crowded place that I noticed his left foot was missing. Oh, my goodness. One of THE MOST embarrassing moments of my life. I could feel the stares and hear the mumblers. Oh, I felt so bad. I stopped him as soon as we were about a 100 feet away from the crowds, tipped him heavily, and just felt awful about it.
I would see the old man again and again over the years sitting in the same spot and I always gave him a little money. He always have me a big Thai smile. Last I heard from a friend that owns a small business in front of his spot was that he won the lottery. Good for him! He always had a big smile for me–or maybe it was for the money I always gave him. An expensive ride it turned out to be, and a great, but very embarrassing encounter and memory. You are the first to hear this story.
Goodbye for today.