We’re often asked why we picked Bangkok as our starting point.
It’s a fair question, but we don’t really have a fixed reason why this city and why not some other place. But here are a few things that stick with us:
- We like Bangkok, Thailand and its smiling, happy people.
- Many of the countries between Thailand and Catalonia are relatively unknown to us and rich with history and cultures we would like to learn about.
- There will be something very primal and human about communicating in the most basic way possible, since we won’t be able to be able to speak any local language.
- We like challenges, and this seems as good as any other we could think up; walking out of a sprawling mega-city in 100-degree heat will be our first challenge.
- We like the way BABA sounds (BAngkok-BArcelona). And, in Catalan baba means drool, and in Croatian baba means grandmother. There’s something comforting about starting a trip that makes us drool.
- Bangkok’s full name is the longest city name in the world, and that seems to tie in with the idea that we are going on the longest walk of our lives, so far. And we like what Bangkok means. This is the full name and meaning: กรุงเทพมหานคร อมรรัตนโกสินทร์ มหินทรายุธยามหาดิลก ภพนพรัตน์ ราชธานีบุรีรมย์ อุดมราชนิเวศน์ มหาสถาน อมรพิมาน อวตารสถิต สักกะทัตติยะ วิษณุกรรมประสิทธิ์ – The city of angels, the great city, the residence of the Emerald Buddha, the impregnable city (of Ayutthaya) of God Indra, the grand capital of the world endowed with nine precious gems, the happy city, abounding in an enormous Royal Palace that resembles the heavenly abode where reigns the reincarnated god, a city given by Indra and built by Vishnukarn. How can you not love a name like that???
- We had to start somewhere, so Bangkok is as good as any place we could think of.
Our week in review
Here’s what we’ve been doing the last few days since we’ve landed. We got our bahts, found a basic room to crash in and enjoyed our first Thai meals.
We’ve been to a couple embassies collecting visas or gathering visa information for other countries en route. During one of these expeditions, we learned an embassy wasn’t where we were told it was, and a very kind group of people helped us get ourselves sorted and fed us corn on the cob and gave us bottles of water.
We found shade in Lumphini park where a huge Komodo dragon (we think that’s what it was) climbed a tree next to where we were sitting (we were really surprised to see it so close!).
We met Lluís’ friend and his wife and learned a lot about Thailand and Bangkok; thanks to them we learned Bangkok has the longest city name in the world and that there is a pop song about it (You can sing along here with this YouTube video, which oddly enough includes a tango).
And, here a few photos for you.