While I hate the meme that YOLO is, I am 100% behind the principle. Life is short; take risks, go out of your comfort zone, push yourself, dare to be. But don’t be stupid.
NOTE: Dear mum, when you read this, I know you will ask me what ‘YOLO’ means. It means You Only Live Once. Think ‘Carpe Diem’. It became a popular internet meme after Drake’s song ‘The Motto’. I know you will ask me who Drake is. He is a Canadian rapper/musician.
Why YOLO? See, I did something I normally wouldn’t do while in Bangkok. Gather round, boys and girls. Story time…
I took a trip to the Grand Palace on day 2 of being in Bangkok. It was closed for the changing of the Buddha or something… A little disappointing, but I figured because the Temple of the Reclining Buddha (Wat Pho) was a walk away, I would visit that instead. Then I got distracted. I saw a park and decided that it would be nice to relax and spend some time in thought. So I walked to the park. Then I spotted a river… Then I spotted a pier, and walked to the pier. There were tens of people getting on and off different boats. I got on one of the boats. I had no idea where it was going, how much it cost or when the last boat would be back. I had no map and I knew nothing; not even the name of the river! There was the language barrier thing, and I was alone. Being alone makes everything scarier!
Here’s what was going through my mind before I got onto the boat.
“I do not know where this boat goes. Let me find out.”
“If I get lost, I could always show my hotel card to a taxi driver and get back safe.”
“I’m in Bangkok for a really short time, I might as well. I’m here now.”
“If I die, I die.”
So I got on. And boy don’t I regret it. I know you’re probably thinking, ‘You got on a boat, big deal!’ Yes, big deal. I would never do something like this. Even when I do ridiculous things, they are planned! I’m one to plan every little detail of everything, and I can stress when things don’t go according to plan. So doing something this spontaneous, in a new city, alone, was definitely something to write home about.
I later found out the river was the Chao Phraya River and is a major waterway in Thailand. There are several piers along the way, into Bangkok.
It provided beautiful views of the city, the Grand Palace, Wat Arun (a famous temple), an ancient church (the first in Bangkok), and really was a lovely way to travel like a local. Ever in Bangkok? Take one of the ferries/boats.
“In Bangkok, the Chao Phraya is a major transportation artery for a vast network of river buses, cross-river ferries and water taxis, also known as longtails. More than 15 boat lines operate on the rivers and canals of the city, including commuter lines.” -Wikipedia
It cost me 40 baht per one way trip, and I discovered that the last boat left the Central Pier at 5pm.
I wound up in the CBD’s periphery, next to one of the major the SkyTrain stations. I walked around, had fresh fruit from the street, and even did some shopping. Luckily, I remembered the way back to the pier and made it back to my hotel safe. Savour the pictures!
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Love and Love