Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Walking in Bangkok

Despite the heat and sticky air, we do quite a lot of walking here in Bangkok.  It is about a 20 minute walk to the subway from M's condo, and I am getting to know that stretch of sidewalk well.  You don't see too many people walking here, at least not for great distances.  I don't know if that is due to the heat, or if it is just because the sidewalks here are somewhat treacherous.  The sidewalks are narrow, and right in the middle of the sidewalk, there is often a tree or a large cement sign pole.  It makes it hard to walk side by side.  Most often, I will trail behind M, camera at the ready.  If you encounter a person coming from the other direction, the sidewalk seems to shrink.  I will have you know that I have been able to master walking these narrow sidewalks WITH OPEN UMBRELLA.  (It helps keep the hot sun off, in addition to rain.)   It is important to have skills.  The skill I haven't quite mastered is being able to look in the correct direction before crossing the street.  I am getting better at it, but improvements could be made.
This hole was marked with an orange pilon, which helps.
In addition to the uneven parts of the sidewalk, and areas that are crumbling and cracked, there are often puddles from dripping air conditioners.  This is a common occurrence in Asia, not just Bangkok.  I know there probably isn't anything bad about the dripping water, but I hate it when I am not paying attention and I get dripped on.  For some inexplicable reason, it creeps me out.

I do not wish to imply that the sidewalks in the US are perfect.  Not by any means!  There is plenty of unevenness to American sidewalks.  I am merely observing what it is like here.  I do think sidewalks in the US are wider.  No matter what, I have always found that the best way to really see the world is on foot, sidewalks or no. 


Annie said...

I agree, walking is the best, and I love walking cities like San Francisco and New York. Also I have to say that walking in Taos and Santa Fe can sometimes be a lot
like Bangkok, in Taos you are lucky to even find a sidewalk except right in town. xoxo

Cynthia Schelzig said...

The German authority would not approve of those sidewalks:) What fabulous graffitttti you found!! Thanks for taking us along for the ride via your fotos:)