Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Bangkok 2013

My trip to Bangkok was planned and booked earlier this year. I was very excited about returning to the Land of Smiles, the City of Angels. I had visited this place many years ago when I was a cabin crew for Singapore Airlines. I missed my flying days so much, so to go on any overseas trip is a pleasure. I am easily pleased. This place was going to be a walk down memory lane for me. “Gun powder galore! The Land of Chillies was on my mind, it is a foodie paradise, next to Malaysia.”
I couldn't be happier!


Just a few photos via Instagram of what I ate during the course of my stay in Bangkok. More photos on my Flickr account.



Except that a lot has changed. The malls are bigger, the highways are wider, there's a new airport now. It used to be Don Muang Airport in the old days; I believed they still used it. My flight from Sydney took 9 hours 40 minutes and we got in at around 6pm by the time we cleared immigration and customs. This is not including our flight from Wagga up to Sydney.

My son and I went straight to the taxi line and got in the cab to our hotel. I could see that that the traffic is as mad as ever and I was so happy that to see the tuk-tuks zigzagging along on the road in the city. We got to our hotel and checked in; I love the escort service to our room. We were tired after a long day of travelling, we ordered a quick room service dinner and pretty much, was dead to world after our dinner and shower.

The next morning, we started the day with the buffet breakfast. I was refreshed from my sleep and in my element. I sampled all the food. I worked the buffet by the grid. Bit by bit, I managed to eat everything on sight till I was unable to move. Lucky for me, I get a little rest before the mall opens.


The shops over here opened late in the morning, like in most Asian countries and trades until late evening around ten. We were not in a hurry that day. It was just going to be a relaxing day in the malls around MBK, Central World, and Siam Square. The heat was starting to get to me and by late afternoon, I was defeated. This old gal needed her nanna nap, but I soldiered on. The agenda on the first day was to get souvenirs and presents for friends so that we don't forget about them with all the tours, I had in mind and was planning to do.

On our second day, we took the nearest sky train closest to our hotel, from National Stadium to Saphan Taksin and from there we took a ferry to Grand Palace and Emerald Buddha Temple. The BTS sky train was very efficient and quick way to get around Bangkok. I was apprehensive at first, but the Thais are very friendly and hospitable. It is really easy to take the sky train. I told them where I want to get to, the hotel concierge had given me a map and directions earlier, and the Info desk gave me some tokens in exchange for 30 Thai baht each for our train ride. That’s like $2 Australian dollars for both. It’s the best way to see Bangkok.

Map of BTS

The ferry ride was even better. It’s fun and exciting with disco music blasting loudly with tourists and locals riding along. It the scenic route as you can see a number of Wats aka temples along the Chao Phraya River including Wat Arun.

Ferry ride Sathorn Pier

I love the Emerald Buddha Temple. You’re not allowed to take photos of the Emerald Buddha. However, if you click on this link, you will be able to see the Emerald Buddha; it certainly is beautiful with its fine gold clothing. The Emerald Buddha is actually made of Jade, not the Emerald gem. I was told that Emerald was just the term Thais used to describe the colour green.

Emerald Buddha

Grand Palace and Emerald Buddha Temple

The Grand Palace is certainly very grand and majestic. It is made of several buildings on site with gardens, public building, museum and temple. The Royal family does not reside there any more but I am told that many official functions are still held there. It remains one of the most popular tourist attractions.

Grand Palace and Emerald Buddha Temple

The line to the ticket booth was already long despite being early in the morning. If we had come later, the heat would have been unbearable. Thailand is extremely hot and we rested under the shades of trees several times to escape the heat and crowds.

Grand Palace and Emerald Buddha Temple

On the third day of our trip, I woke up with sore throat and decided to have an easy day; so we went to Jim Thompson’s house and did a tour there. His house is more like a museum, no one lives there any more. The house was built in an old Thai structure, we were told, there were no nails used to build the house. We were not allowed to take any photos once inside the house but were allowed to take photos of the exterior and gardens.

Jim Thompson's House

I was transfixed and mesmerised by its gardens. I think that this is now my favourite place in Bangkok. It’s green, it’s cooling and I love the Koi fishes in the garden pond. Despite the coming and goings of tourists in the place, it was still very serene and calming in gardens. I love the garden and wished the place was mine. I am happiest in a garden!

Jim Thompson's House

Jim Thompson's House

Jim Thompson's House

Jim Thompson's House

It was nice to sit in the bar after the tour, watching the Kois swimming freely in the man-made pond. The drinks were cold and refreshing. My sore throat was starting to annoy me.

Jim Thompson's House

We took a tuk tuk to Central World and had lunch there. Then we went to the Aquarium in Siam Paragon for the boy. He loves aquariums and it was a nice relaxing afternoon for me. It was cool in the mall and there were not too many crowds there. It wasn't school holidays and the place was not busy. It was nice to escape the heat, to sit down and just stare at sharks and rays all day. I do love the malls in Bangkok, so clean and spacious with beautiful designs.

Central World

Siam Paragon

Central World

Siam Ocean World

It all went downhill after the third day, I had gotten sick and came down with some big gal blouse flu, which was much worse than the man flu! I was in tears! We hadn't gone to the Crocodile Farm yet, or the Floating Market or the weekend markets. I was cursing the Gods by then. Why oh why? I had to stay in bed for the rest of my holiday. I called the Hotel's on-call doctor and I was miserable as anything. No chillies, no cold drinks, no fried foods. It was terrible. I was heartbroken!

I promised that I will return to Bangkok again in future when the airfare are on specials again. Until then...


Sunday, May 26, 2013

Purple Power

Purple Power

So I am have been juicing for weeks, I haven't lost any weight that I can see. However, I am definitely feeling the better for it. I still have my cold/flu. Who has a cold for 3 weeks? I am so over the coughing already. It's annoying. Everytime I coughed too hard, I have to run to the loo to pee. Oh, can I say pee online?  I have noticed that I do not have any symptoms of IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome).

Purple Power

This week, we went green and now purple. The green drink last week, was just celery, green apple, spinach, broccoli, kale. I only took instagram photos if you are interested, it My Instagram

For the Purple Power, I looked for all most red and blue and purple veges and fruits. I didn't buy blueberries though because it was so expensive for a punnet. $7!! Ouch!! Now make sure you always always wash your veges and fruits, because you are drinking it raw, get rid of any pesticide. At least with cooking, we know they will be well and truly dead. But you should always wash your foods anyway.


2 purple carrots
1/4 head of red cabbage
1 beetroot
1 bunch of red grapes
1/4 lemon for the zing!

If you can afford it, throw in the blueberries!

Purple Power

Tuesday, May 14, 2013


My latest addition to my kitchen benchtop is this medium size red little engine called Hurom 400. I bought it from TVSN channel as a pressie to myself for Mother's Day. I am so sick of being sick that I thought that this would be a great investment, to start juicing for life.

I just returned from a holiday sick as a dog and I fell ill on the third day of my holiday. How shitty is that? I missed out on so much just spending time sleeping in the hotel room. It wasn't even a long holiday, 7 days and six nites, half of that in bed. I vow never to let that happen again. What a waste of time and money, laying in bed. I was in tears!

I have been eyeing this Hurom for a while, I researched, googled, watched the youtube demos of various brands and decided that when I could afford it, I'd buy the Hurom. Hurom is made in Korea, you can buy it locally and register your product for Australian warranty.
Hurom 400

I bought mine from TVSN Channel as there was an option for part payment. That suited my budget well. Not everyone can go out and hand over $400- $500 cash just like that. Expecially after a holiday. So the part payment suited me fine and I chose the Burgundy colour, because Red goes faster, right? I paid $399 for mine. That is the cheapest by far on the market for a Hurom 400. A Hurom 300 starts at $350 from Hurom Australia website, and that is the baby Hurom :)

This morning, I dragged myself out of bed. I am still on sick leave after returning to Australia. I chopped up some veges and fruits and a small piece of ginger. You can fit a whole apple in the Big Hurom, top range, but I only got the Hurom 400, so I must cut the fruit and raw veg to size to fit the chute.
Hurom 400

{It is really easy to use, to assemble and disassemble. One thing you need to know about me, is that I am a complete gadget idiot, yes, computers I can fix but putting together a blender is a different story. From the youtube demo, I could see that cleaning this juicer and assembling it, was going to be easy. That is always the deal breaker when I buy things. It has to be idiot proof!}


Hurom 400

My doctor has told me that I need to change my diet and get healthy as I could be prediabetic as well. Great!! The flu and prediabetic, all wonderful news!! Not! The good news is that my blood pressure is now normal, last reading was 122/77. The lowest it has ever been. Now I just got to work on, my high cholesterol and weight. All these bad news and the flu too!!

So I am making a lifestyle change. You won't find any more sweets or dessert blog posts here as I must really give them up. I have even contemplated giving up blogging.

However, I decided to post this because I wanted to share this amazing product with my readers. I am drinking the best tastiest glass of juice this morning with a zing! I hope jucing will improve my health.

So apolgies in advance for my future absences. I need to focus on getting better. I am still looking for great books on juicing, so please comment and share if you are juicing too and enjoy any particular books/recipes.

This morning's juice:
  • 1 small piece of ginger
  • 3 carrots
  • 1 small beetroot
  • 2 apples
  • 2 celery sticks
Hurom 400

Friday, May 10, 2013

Pathuwan Princess, Bangkok

I recently fulfilled one of my travel bucket list which was a trip back to Thailand. I had been there in the eighties when I was a flight attendant for Singapore Airlines.

Bangkok, we flew in with Qantas and I had booked a stay with Pathuwan Princess Hotel via Qantas Holidays. I had wanted to be near the malls and the location was just perfect. I also chose this hotel because of it's smoke free environment. Nothing worse than smelling stale cigarette smell in your room, right? We checked in the evening around 6.30pm and was welcomed with a welcome drink in a test tube bottle. I can't remember what exactly it was now, just a purple fruity drink which was quite refreshing in the heat. Believe me, it was extremely hot in Thailand.

The hotel lobby was buzzing that night due to a local promotion with visiting models and idols. As we got off the taxi, our bags were immediately taken by the concierge who gave us a chit for the suitcases. We walked through a metal detector scanner at the entrance, to get in the lobby. I was amazed by the level security of the place. 

Reception was on the second floor, a Guest Relation staff walked us to the Reception and we were checked in and walked to our room as well.

My initial room was a Double Queen, we asked to be moved to Twin, that was not a problem at all. Still on the high floor with fantastic view. The staff were just fantastic, so polite and hospitable. Always greeting you with a smile. This is a great hotel.

The breakfast buffet were impressive, so was the dinner buffets. I could not fault the meals served at Pathuwan Princess.



I had gotten sick during my holiday. I must have caught a cold or flu and was bed ridden for days and every day, without fail, Room Service would deliver honey lemon tea to me without charge. I was even given a bunch of rose as well. Reception staff visited me to check on my wellbeing and needs.

I saw the on call doctor "Global Doctors" that came to my room and gave me some medication to help me feel better. This was also organised by the hotel staff for me.

My in-room dining was discounted because of my illness. It was just those little things like goodwill gesture, thoughtfulness and classy service that makes me want to recommend this hotel to everyone. 

I missed out on doing few tours in Bangkok and if ever I get a chance to go back to Bangkok, I will definitely stay here again. I was treated like Royalty! I am so grateful for the care during my stay.

The hotel lobby is connected to MBK mall. Further down within MBK mall, there is another walkway that leads to Discovery Science, Siam Square and Siam Paragon malls. The location of this hotel itself, is ideal for shoppers and perfect base for tours. There are two tour desks in the lobby.

My only negative experience in staying here is the annoying Indian guy from PN Fashion in the lobby. He was a pushy little turd and I put him in his place and he stopped annoying me after. There are plenty of other tailors around the malls. I certainly won't be buying from him if ever I wanted any dressmaking done.

Overall, my stay at the Pathuwan Princess was most enjoyable and I would certainly return to this hotel in a heartbeat.

Lastly, I leave you with this photo of my dinner buffet to drool at ;)

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Bye Bye Pathuwan Princess, hope to see you again.


Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Qantas to Bangkok

Route Sydney to Bangkok
Aircraft Airbus A330-300
Economy Class, seat 29 K and J (middle of the middle section).

I had the old uniform on my flight. The new uniforms will begin to appear on Qantas’s 12,600 uniformed staff from early next year.

Flight time: Nine hours, 40 minutes.

Seat: 29K, can live with it for a trip to Bangkok. Don't love it.

The Airbus 330-300 aircraft offers a two-class, Business and Economy, service. There is no first class.
Seat configuration 2-4-2.

Economy 30 kilogram
In addition to your carry-on baggage allowance, you may also carry on board one small personal item such as a handbag, laptop computer*, overcoat, small camera, a reasonable amount of reading material or a small amount of duty free goods (where permitted). We carried one suitcase which had only 11 Kilos as we will be shopping till we drop in Bangkok.

It was not too bad, can live with it, any longer trip, I would gotten the exit row because on the A330-300, there is an entertainment unit under your seat and makes it hard to stretch out your feet. This is on every row except bulkhead and exit as there is no one in front of you. I walked a few times around cabin and had short naps to break the boredom and discomfort.

There was 60 movies, over 250 TV programs, 250 CD’s, 10 games and 20 radio programs to choose from. I watched 2.5 movies. Will have to repeat my last movie as we landed on time.

The service was excellent, a little different in style to other Asian airlines, noticed they do not use tray to bring your drinks. It was handheld. The crew was friendly and courteous, we had Asian crew on our Thai flight.

Food and beverages
I had the Fish Hake fillet in shittake mushroom with rice and chinese greens. Darren had the Beef ragu in wine sauce, he ate his mashies and veges and not the ragu. I think the wine was over powering for his personal taste. He asked for a coke and it came in a mini can. My Chardonnay came in a little tiny bottle, it was very cute.

Flight frequency QF flies daily between Sydney and Bangkok.

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