“Then I turned around and walked to my room and closed the door and put my head under my pillow and let the quiet put things where they are supposed to be.”—The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky (via thelovewhisperer)
So far I’ve been making pretty slow progress on my to do list, but finally this weekend I crossed off three of the most important items.
We spent Friday night in Fort Worth and started the night with fajitas and margaritas at Joe T’s. I had been there once before, so it wasn’t a bucket list item, but it was equally as fun an experience as last time. Billy Bob’s was the next stop for a concert by The Band Perry, which was tons of fun. I had heard how massive Billy Bob’s is, but I was not at all prepared for the huge dance floors, arcade games, gift shops and live bull riding. Quite the scene. The last stop of the night was Pete’s Piano Bar. It reminded me a lot of Big Bang, my favorite bar in Nashville. Lots of (probably terrible) singing along occurred.
In the morning, we somehow managed to get up in time to stop by the stockyards to see the cattle drive. It was everything I had dreamed of and more. Twelve huge longhorns wandering down a city street. Not something you see every day! All in all, a fantastic Texas weekend and a good dent in my list.
-See the Fort Worth Stockyard cattle drive
-Two step at Billy Bob’s
-Watch a movie at the Galaxy Drive-In Theater
-Explore the new Perot Museum
-Shop at the downtown Neiman Marcus
-Go to happy hour at Five Sixty in reunion tower
-Eat lunch at Jimmy’s Food Store
-Spend more time in Oak Cliff/Bishop Arts
-Sing until I have no voice left at Pete’s Piano Bar
-Drive across the border into Arkansas
-Go to a Dallas Stars game
-Have a margarita on the River Walk in San Antonio
One of the highlights of our trip was an all day tour that we did outside of Bangkok. I booked Tours with Tong after ready shining reviews on TripAdvisor, and they did not disappoint.
Our guide Jay and a driver picked us up at 7AM sharp and we headed out of the city to the Damnoensaduak Floating Market. It was a two hour driver, but we were entertained by the scenery and Jay’s story telling. We decided not to pay to go through the market in a boat and instead spend forty five minutes or so exploring on foot. We purchased fresh mango for 20 baht (70 cents), some souvenirs and sissy found elephant printed pants that she loves so much she may never take them off again. The key is knowing how to barter with the vendors because they will try to charge you three or four times what you should be paying.
The next stop, which was another two hour drive, was the elephant bath and ride at the Wangpo Elephant Camp. We were REALLY looking forward to this and were so impressed how much time we got with our elephant Full Moon and how great Jay was about capturing photos for us. The mahout (elephant trainer) was in the water with us giving commands to Full Moon to have her spray us, dunk us in the water and have a water fight with us. After the bath we then got to go on a short bareback ride…we were rather sore the next day!
The last stop of the day was at the Tiger Temple, just a few minutes down the road from the elephant camp. There are over twenty “tame” tigers there who have been raised by monks since they were young. There were many volunteers to help guide visitors around and ensure that we were safe. They were also great about taking pictures for us. It wasn’t until after we left that we really thought about that fact that we were petting animals that could eat our arm off!
We’ve been back from Thailand since Sunday and I continue to reflect on what an incredible trip it was. I don’t go on week long vacations very often, so there is lots to tell! I will have to break it down into a few posts. First…our hotel in Bangkok. I had originally booked an inexpensive hotel that I found on TripAdvisor based solely on the good reviews that I read. I think it would have worked out fine, but a friend of my sister’s suggested that we check out the Phranakorn Nornlen, which she said was her favorite hotel that she had ever stayed at. We decided to go for it, and fortunately our other booking for refundable. We are SO GLAD that we decided to try out this quirky, friendly, beautiful, very special hotel. It was an oasis really…from the chaos that is Bangkok.
Tucked away down a quiet street in Old Bangkok
We felt welcome the moment we walked in…Beth is my sister
The “lobby,” but more like a tropical garden
I wish I could go shoe-less all the time
Our cute room
I could eat this breakfast every day. Pancakes, bruschetta, eggs, broccoli soup, cappuccino and fresh pineapple juice
The Phranakorn Nornlen taught us to live the slow life