Apr 09 2011
Welcoming the New Year with a gigantic water fight might seem like the best idea ever, but sometimes our inner curmudgeon says “get off my lawn, you meddling kids” with nary a trace of a smile. What to do? It’s time to avoid. Unfortunately, in Thailand, if you want to avoid Songkran it’s going to take some serious commitment.
Step 1: Seek shelter.
Choose a place that is comfortable enough for a three-day seclusion. This is a great time to splurge on a Bangkok hotel that is attached to a shopping center so that you can take advantage of indoor shopping, eating, walking, and movies without ever having to run a gauntlet of water guns. Another option is renting a short term stay apartment- many buildings have gyms and pools that you can access, and apartments often have a kitchenette to cater from.
Step 2: Lay in supplies.
Head over to Pantip Plaza and pick up movies for a movie marathon, or to one of the second-hand bookstores along Sukhumvit and make it a literary hermitage.
Having an in-room fridge is a huge advantage- check out Tesco Lotus (BTS: National Stadium) or Big C (BTS: Chitlom) for snacks, fresh groceries, and booze. Running low on supplies and worried you’ll have to kill and eat your friends? Fear not: www.chefsxp.com will deliver prepared food, beer, liquor, and tobacco so no one has to resort to cannibalism.
Step 3: Batten down the hatches.
Hurray! Slovenliness! All underwear all the time!
Step 4: Avoiding Cabin Fever
Can’t stand your mates one more minute? Here’s what to do. The vast majority of Bangkok cab drivers leave town during Songkran for the countryside, so by the time you get one waved down on the street you might be rather damp.
Have your bell man arrange for a cab, or, if you don’t have one, call 1661 or 1681 and request one pick you up at your front door. Both numbers have English speaking operators and charge 20 baht extra for radio service. Lock the doors and away you go, dry as a curmudgeon’s shriveled heart.
Tomorrow: What does the chalk and water mean?
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