July 8th, 2004

Bangkok, day two

Yesterday we made our goal to visit the National Museum. We didn't get as lost this time, so it was a pretty quick walk! We stopped at the National Gallery on the way to check out traditional and contemporary Thai art. It was pretty cool! Unfortunately, like nothing is air conditioned, so we were baking the whole time.

After that, we made it to the National Museum, which is pretty big! Unfortunately, all the really cool stuff was photography prohibited. They had a hall about Thailand's history, then artifacts from all over Thailand and other parts of Asia. Particularly cool were the royal burial chariots and the Buddha images. We stopped for lunch at the museum's kind of sketchy restaurant.

There was a pretty big variety of stuff, from prehistoric ceramics to Thai clothing from the 1920s. There were so many Buddhas we were starting to get sick of them! They had an entire room full of fancy elephant seats (for the royal family to ride comfortably on elephants) and stuff like that.

We spent pretty much the whole day at the gallery and the museum, then headed back to the hotel. We stopped for dinner at a nearby restaurant (pretty tasty), then went up to our room to while away the evening watching TV and reading.

Our plan for today is shopping for souvenires. I bought some postcards at the museum shop yesterday, so hopefully I'll get around to sending them tonight. Our first challenge is to figure out how much to bargain down a taxi driver to take us to the shopping area!

Also, in case you were wondering, we're watching the news about bird flu and such.