Something Fishy ……

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We are just back from yet another trip way down south to Koh Lipe, a great time was had …..lots of fresh seafood, sundowners on the beach, and lots of snorkelling !

I usually did 3 or 4 hours of snorkelling every day, including a mammoth swim from one end of Sunrise Beach out around Ko Kra island, all along the reef to Ko Usen at the other end of Sunrise beach ….probably close to 4kms altogether. As I celebrated my 63rd birthday down there I think that’s not too bad for an old fella !

As usual, lots of photos and videos to sort through now we are home, and just a few for now :

(All photos taken with a Canon G7X Mk2, in a Fantasea FG7X housing, as usual click on the small images for a larger version )

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This fellow was not scared of me, he kept coming closer to check me out !

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A photowalk to Wat Paknam Phasi Charoen.

mapEarlier this month I went on a photowalk with the “Bangkok Photographers” Facebook group heading from Talat Phlu BTS station in the (very general and roundabout) direction of Wat Paknam Phasi Charoen via the back streets of Bangkok Yai, on the “other” side of the river, where white faces are generally rather rare until around 60 mainly farang photographers showed up early on a Sunday morning !

This temple is one of the biggest in Bangkok, sprawling over a large area and visible from some distance because of it’s tall white chedi.

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Panorama from the chedi of the wat, looking out over the khlong to Wat Khun Chan.

 

Getting there was half the fun, as the saying goes, along narrow back alleys and railway tracks following the chalk marks of our leaders.

Some photos from along the way :

(As usual, click for a larger version of any photo)

 

© 2018 Michael Nottingham

Wat Khun Chan …..I was glad that I had taken my fisheye lens !

 

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After Wat Khun Chan it was over the canal and into the sprawling grounds of Wat Paknam Phasi Charoen. This is one of the country’s richest wats, with many wealthy benefactors and links to the notorious “flying saucer temple’ of Wat Phra Dhammakaya which has been implicated in cases of embezzlement, fraud and illegal encroachment into national parks.

The chedi contains a museum with many valuable artifacts, but the highlight is the magnificent “Green Pagoda” on the upper floor :

© 2018 Michael Nottingham

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For more photos from the walk, the group published an online magazine here !

How to get there ?

Closest BTS Skytrain station is Wuttakat, you cannot miss the temple from the platform ! But just in case, the GPS co-ordinates are 13.7215, 100.4703.

 

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A million flowers for their King

floral_display-22Yesterday I went over to the “Talat Pak Khlong” flower market, where a large stretch of road has been turned into a floral display of remembrance in honour of His Late Majesty King Bhumibol, Rama 9, who will be cremated with traditional pomp and ceremony on October 26, although the ceremonies are over several days.

(as usual, click for a larger version of the photos)

Apparently over a million blooms were used to create this, with many of them being replaced as they wilt after a few days in the Thai heat so I guess it will be close to 2 million by the time it is taken down after the funeral ceremonies finish.

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Heaven’s Gate, with Montharop flowers and white elephants which traditionally belong to the King.

Nearby on the entrance to Memorial Bridge was another remembrance display :


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How time flies ….

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Four years ago yesterday I was just about to step onto this plane at Sydney Airport to make the big move here to Bangkok, with my worldly possessions reduced to the contents of 1 backpack and 2 suitcases. And I’m still here …… although there will probably be another “Change in Latitude” late next year, but only a few hundred  kilometres this time when my girlfriend and I are likely to move upcountry to her home in Ubon Ratchathani.

While I’m still happy to live here in the “Big Mango” she would prefer the slower Issaan lifestyle with her family nearby.

So it will be goodbye to Skytrain and aircon malls, hello to the scooter and the daily village market ….and early morning roosters 😦

On a more sombre note, today is the anniversary of the late King Rama 9’s death last year so it is a rather sad day for most Thais, and probably more so in a couple of weeks when their beloved King is cremated. So if anybody is coming here for a holiday soon expect a very quiet couple of days, although there has apparently been no official decree about bar closures etc.

 

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A Bangkok Photowalk -Klong Bang Luang Market.

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As I mentioned in my last post, I recently went on a photowalk with the “Bangkok Photographers” Facebook group, starting from the Bang Wa BTS station in the bottom left of the Google earth pic above, and finishing at the Klong Bang Luang riverside market in the top right, more or less following the route in red.

(see here for Google Maps)

Although there are a lot of condos and modern infrastructure going up now, it is one of the older parts of town, peppered with wats  and criss-crossed by canals that have not been filled to make way for roads, unlike much of the city on the other side of the river.

It’s not an area that would see a lot of white faces, so I guess the locals would have been a bit surprised to see around 90 photographers, mainly foreigners, strolling around the neighbourhood early on a Sunday morning !

Here’s some of the photos I took that morning …I seem to have concentrated on flowers 🙂 (click to see a larger version)


But it was not all flowers :

For more photos from the morning check out the online magazine here

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Lotus Flower.

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Lotus Flower, Wat Khampang Bang Chak, Bangkok

 

As a lotus flower is born in water, grows in water and rises out of water to stand above it unsoiled, so I, born in the world, raised in the world having overcome the world, live unsoiled by the world.”  Gautama Buddha

This weekend just past I went on another photowalk with the ” Bangkok Photographers” Facebook group, along with 94 other people ! Apparently that was a record number of people to turn up, early on a Sunday morning too ….
As I’ve mentioned earlier we are asked to submit our best photos from the walk for an online magazine, but to not publish those elsewhere for a few days. I had more than enough to give you a teaser, 🙂

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