We took the earliest flight out of Singapore and landed in Bangkok a good 20 minutes earlier than scheduled. That flight was more or less empty. Going through immigrations was a breeze because there weren't any other humans or queues! Our suitcases were the first on the carousel. Got out to the arrival hall all before 8.45am Bangkok time with insane grins. Wow. Our friends were thoroughly impressed. Two crazy ones insisted on picking us up at this hour. They didn't want us to take a cab. We were so pai-seh.. Like we've never taken a cab in Bangkok lor. Totally appreciative.
And we leave Bangkok after another round of awesome experiences. We've thought about popping in only this week and hanging out till next week. The friends had advised that it'd be better if we leave before the weekend of 11th. We did as told. The trip has been smooth and thoroughly enjoyable, but a tad pensive for what will happen next week, and during the elections on 2 February 2014. Already, the photos coming out of Bangkok about the situation and crowds at the blockaded junctions are worrying. While the situations aren't all that bad, it's inconvenient.
The man and I have no plans to step into the city till May at the earliest, when the elections and all affecting systemic changes have been effected. Or not. May will be a decisive and perhaps divisive month for Thailand. The islands shouldn't be affected. But I don't know how Bangkok would have changed then. Already, we felt the pulse of the city shift and it's humming along really differently. The city is a tad fearful of the impending political developments. Hopefully, there won't be a repeat of 2010's deadly violence. The photos of sandbagged junctions and protesters throttling their own city are painful to see. But this isn't my city, and I can't share in what they're fighting for. I can only listen to the friends debate and muse over possibilities.
May common sense prevail. Stay safe, Bangkok.