Saturday, June 7, 2008

Market day

It's Saturday, and that means the weekend market is in full swing near Chatuchak Park on Bangkok's north side. We decided yesterday that today would be market day. Robin's been itchin' to do a little more shopping, mostly for T.

As we prepared to leave the room this morning, we again discussed how we were going to get in contact with the other Holt family staying at the Amari. We knew they were here, but had not made contact with them yet. We'd been taking extra time to examine all couples we saw around the hotel wondering if any of them were Jared and Sarah. We went down to the lobby for breakfast and saw a couple there who fit the criteria, so we approached them...and it was clear pretty quickly that we had found them.

We sat to chat and exchange Bangkok travel notes and adoption-related stories for a little while. We all marveled at the fact that we were just over 24 hours away from meeting our children. We agreed to meet up for supper tonight. It's great to have another couple here with us to share the upcoming experience.

We hit the skytrain early and took it all the way to where the line terminates in the north. The market is a short walk from the terminal...and it's HUGE. I could easily spot it from the skytrain as we approached.
It's difficult to photograph any one thing that really shows how immense the market is. We got there early and by the time we left, we had found that the crowds had grown quite a bit. Much of the market is under cover, as you see in the above photo. It goes on and on and on with shop after shop after shop. Thank goodness the skytrain is high overhead so you can keep your bearings.
The major thoroughfares are outdoors, as you can see here. What can you buy there? Food, flowers, jewelry, cloths, trinkets, antiques, art, books, magazines, furniture...would you really like me to continue? The food was one of the highlights. We again had an amazing lunch for the startling price of $2, total.

I've been a little hesitant to eat from street vendors. I've managed to keep my stomach healthy this first week, and would like to keep it that way. Robin, however, could hold out no longer. She started with some eggrolls.
...and then some coconut ice cream.
At the end of the day...we were quite happy with our work. As you can see below, we focused on getting T some clothes. Not that we can't get cloths at home, but there are some unique Thai things you just can't get at home.
Take note of the Thailand soccer jersey in the upper right. This we actually bought near our hotel on the way back today. I had been considering them all week as something fun to get for T. Robin wanted me to get it. Finally, we went in to the store (I hated actually admitting to one of the pushy vendors that I was interested in one of the things he was selling). He found the jersey we wanted...and he was asking for like 1200 baht (~$36) for something originally marked 2100 baht (~$63). I sincerely didn't plan on spending that much, but this guy was not going to let me leave without selling it to me. I talked him down to 750 baht (~$22). Robin was impressed, but the only reason it worked was because I sincerely didn't care if I walked out of the store without it. That's a great position to be in. It also shows that you'd be crazy not to haggle with them.

So, with meeting T tomorrow, we decided not to pack too much into one day. Robin also needs a little mending. She's taking a nap right now. She's been fighting a cold that I'm afraid I gave her right before we left home. It's quite a bummer, but she hasn't let it slow her down. I think she's nearing the end, but then, I've been saying that for a few days. Sleep is what killed it for me, so hopefully the nap does the trick. She's also coping with the mosquito attack she endured in Chiang Mai. She has at least 50 bites on each of her legs.
The itching is driving her crazy. I was wearing pants the whole time, and I don't have any bites anywhere. We made a trip to the drug store for the itching, but had to go back because the first place sold her something that was way to potent. We looked up the active ingredient online and it's an immuno-suppressant...a little more intense than what we were looking for.

In answer to some of the recent questions in the comments....

-We have our lappy with us. We thought bringing it would be a burden, and indeed, it's a little annoying to have to worry about the computer's security and safety...but we'd bring it again in a heartbeat. It's a valuable tool.

-Indeed, we plan on publishing this blog into a book. Robin did this for Christmas for me last year. She used a service called Blurb, and it "slurps" your blog posts into book form. It's great. It's nice to see your work in print (even if you're the only one who buys it).

One more note...we've taken various video clips while we're here, but haven't gotten to posting any yet. I'll be looking through them this afternoon. Certainly we hope to use this option on the blog once we meet T.

I've done some tidying around the room in anticipation of T's visit tomorrow. He comes in the late morning here, and don't know when he it's hard to predict when we'll be blogging, but I'm sure we will sometime in the PM. For those of you in the U.S., that may mean something online by the time you wake up, or shortly after, on Sunday.

It keeps getting more surreal. We just can't imagine how tomorrow will actually go. We know the routine from what our schedule says and what other Holt families have told us. We know the logistics. What we don't know is the emotion...the look on his face...his reaction...OUR reaction. It's going to be a big day for us...but a bigger day for him. His world is about to get much larger, with new tastes, new smells, and new people. We expect him to be frightened...anyone in his position would.

So, we pray for bravery...for him and for us. We hope he can tell that we love him, and he's able to feel some security in that.



coole chris said...

What an adventure ! Its nice to read your blog, even if I don't understand all of the words. I can feel the tension, the emotion and your desire to discover the land and the culture of your adoption son Thanu. Thailand is an amazing country, we were there a few years ago and we want to go back ! If you see Fone, and I hope you will, give her many greetings from Belgium from us and from Nora's family.
But the most special thing now, is getting to see Thanu tomorrow. SPANNEND ! I agree totally with what you write on it. Getting to know each other will not be done in 1 day but we hope the first contact will be a good beginning.

Chris en Leo

John and Nancy said...

Robin and Kyle,
I just wanted to let you know that you are in my thoughts and prayers as you begin your new life with your child! I have chills reading your blog in anticipation of your meeting tomorrow. Good luck with everything and I cannot wait to read how everything goes.

Jay and Chandra Regan said...

Thanks for all the helpful info! We're planning on doing a lot of clothes shopping in Thailand, since it'll be cheaper and Penny will be with us and able to find her size and what she likes. The Blurb site sounds intriguing. Thanks for sharing all about your journey. It helps me feel I'm traveling along. Can't wait to find out about how things go when you meet Thanu.

Hannah said...

My heart is pounding knowing that as I'm reading this, just waking up, your are currently preparing to meet Thanu! I hope Robin found something for her bites and is feeling better. I will be thinking of you guys all day. :)

Anonymous said...

Many happy thoughts and good wishes in my heart for your big day with Thanu! I am very excited for you both; it's going to be a special day :)


Bob said...

Wow, what an exciting trip and the real excitement is about to begin. We will be thinking of you all day and very anxious to hear how things went. All our love- enjoy the moment.