Monday, July 21, 2008

Nearly gone...


Dear father (mother, daughter, husband, friend..),

I have sinned.

I tried.

I struggled, I did.

I even lay me down on a row of airport departure lounge chairs and went to sleep.

But it was not to be.

Forgive me.

I have proved that, even before leaving the country, even though I am bound for Bangkok, city of many, many appealing consumables, I can't walk past a sign saying DUTY FREE, with an acre or so of shiny things [sparkly things, things wrapped in cellophane, SMELLY things], and not buybuyBUY!

Yes, dear readers, I failed at the first hurdle, balked at the first fence. Hit the ground running and fell over a cat. I bought purrfume. Oooooooh yes. The boxed set, of course, with bonus hand cream and shower gel. You know, so I can layer the scent. It was on special, I tell you. How could I resist? There was a moment when common sense nearly prevailed, yes, I nearly got out alive, but a nice assistant came to assist me, and I was gone. Shop assistance in Australia? We're in miracle territory here!

And, worst (or best) of all, I had room for it in my backpack. For those of you who know my struggles with form vs. content when it comes to packing, this is beyond miracles and into some kind of heavenly karmic force territory.


Prada hand cream was on double-discount special (yes Shirley, cheaper than Strawberry!) at the register. Naturally I bought that too.

Happy sigh. I have two sets of travelling pong, to layer myself into purrfumed purrfection, brought to you by Prada and Marc Jacob.

I trotted happily back to a waiting M, who eyed my Duty Free bag uneasily. I could tell from the look on his face that he was worried about where I'd put it, and how much I'd spent. I said "I only bought these things to help get rid of my Australian money".

I love this man.

He even smiled!


Thanks to our chauffering friends, we were able to arrive at the airport very early. This allowed us to line up the very minute Qantas opened the check-in for our flight. We asked for exit row seats, knowing that it's very difficult to get these. No promises the person said, but ask at the departure gate. And lo, we did, and lo, we were moved to exit row seats. M still found himself a bit squished as to shoulder room (he was saintly enough to offer me the window seat, and I was selfish enough to accept it), but the leg room is brilliant. It's also just a bit chilly, cos of the emergency exit door I spose, but that doesn't matter when there are plenty of blankies and my fiord-strength polar fleece to keep me toasty.

I got some sleep after an extremely ordinary meal (forgot to ask for veggo meals, must remember to fix that, I contend that special request meals are generally a bit better than the standard economy warm anonymous meat thing). I slept quite well with my leggies all spread out, and my pillow half on M's shoulder. Then I watched the Martin Scorcese film of The Rolling Stones, which caused me to sing along a bit and bop around with my knees. When the spirit moves you... I think M was talking to me at one stage but I was deep in Brown Sugar and Gettin' No Satisfaction. Yeah!

We didn't have too much trouble getting through customs in Bangkok, altho the walk from the arrival lounge TO customs was a pretty fair distance, perhaps nearly a kilometre. But there are moving walkway thingies so we were able to sort of loll on them in a state of semi-collapse (it being about 3am in our personal time). We were not only checked and stamped at customs, but photographed as well. I hope it was a better shot than my passport snap, which was produced by a special 'ugly and old' lense. [As is the set of scales in the bathroom here - add 'fat' to its undesirable properties.]

Our travel agent had arranged a 'transfer' to our hotel, which was a large comfy car and driver. He piled us and all our stuff in and took off at high speed down a huge freeway. It took about 30 minutes to get to the hotel, including an exciting 'short cut' through a building site complete with muddy puddles, rubble and bits of strange equipment half over the track. Once we arrived, down a very narrow alley, all was suddenly marble and gold and huge echoing foyers and maroon velvet everywhere. Very posh.

I was amused to see that a fellow sitting at a desk marked 'CONCIERGE' was surfing the Net, collecting some information for his Biology class the next day I guess... he was scrolling through some close-up photos of images which explained how the father's seed managed to find the egg. Some of the women were being very helpful about where to look for the egg, in case the fathers were a bit confused.

Then we were escorted to our room on the eleventy-fifth floor. A HUGE room, with a HUGE bed, and a HUGE marble bathroom. and lights all over the place but no central, bright light, which is a PAIN. We stumbled around trying to unpack enough to have a shower and go to bed. It was probably about 4.30am in our body clock time when we finally fell into bed. Into one of these hard, kapok Asian beds, so I hurt myself. Bugger.

Then nothing at all happened for about 9 hours. Fabbo.

Then we tried room service bacon, egg and tomato sammos (ok) and fresh coffee (hmm). Then nothing happened again for about 4 more hours.

Our remains managed to collect themselves into human form in time to go up to the Sky Seafood Grill Lounge. This is up a special high-speed rocket lift, the type that makes your ears pop and your feet nervous (cos of all the nothing underneath them). The buffet/grill was a ginormous spread of everything with everything. My favourite thing was the gin.

Now I am bravely going downstairs to the 7-11 in the foyer to get some milk for cuppa teas in the morning. See my snort - coming soon - about milk, for detailed observations on the unnecessary and (mostly) unpalatable extremes the production of this simple substance has reached.

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