Monday, May 4, 2015
Revisiting a dear friend - Bangkok city.
When was the last time I was in Bangkok? My mind suddenly began to drift into nostalgia....
The last time I was in Bangkok was in 2006 - the time when I took that scandalous modelling assignment.
During that time, social media wasn't accessible to everyone yet. There was no such thing as a smartphone, the Internet was still confined at cybercafe shops and I don't even have a compact camera of my own! But with the advent of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and my growing audience base - the pressure to produce pictures was staggering. That was the beauty back in 2006. There was simply no pressure! Everything was come as they go. I didn't need to carry any smart gadgets - only a backpack of my clothes and clean underwear.
This time it was for an international commercial shoot. Personally, I wasn't too excited about the trip for I have been there before. But it's always refreshing to visit an old friend - at least that's what Bangkok is to me. Bangkok is indeed a friend for how friendly, soft-spoken and similar it's cultural background with myself.
Flying is much more direct and clinical as compared to taking a long train ride to Bangkok from Kuala Lumpur. With the train ride, you can walk anywhere you like in the train and see all kinds of folks from the very poor to the rich. But in the plane, most of the passengers think they're better in one way or the other. I took a long train ride to Bangkok for my modelling assignment and LOVED every minute of it. I get to cross over miles of paddy fields and green hills and valleys. Totally loved the view. But of course, the hours are long. But with a plane, it took exactly 1 hour and 45 minutes, more or less.
The air stewards in Thai Airways was different.
Upon arrival, all the passengers are taken to the main terminal by a shuttle bus. There were renovations taking place everywhere! As usual, after the customs and Immigration - I looked for my name among the crowds of people holding their placards with names of different nationalities. I spotted one with the name "Kris", but when I enquired further, discovered it was for another Kris from a different continent. I waited for more than an hour for my pick-up to arrive. Upon entering the Column Hotel room, I needed to charge my smartphones quick to anticipate any calls from the Thai production team. But the hotel didn't have any adaptors left! So I immedaitely went to Terminal 21 shopping mall - which is huge. I walked to the shopping mall from the hotel, and within a few walks I've already began to sweat - that's how humid Bangkok is.
Half-way through my half-dream state, I decided to wake up because of the heat. (strangely, the air-conditioning was working). Usually, when I woke up like that, I knew something was going to happen. Then my phone rang, and I was instructed to take a cab to Srinakarin Market. Take a cab? Hurriedly, I changed my clothes, shaved and informed the concierge to book me a cab. I hated surprises, because I was expecting a ready driver. But I am ever flexible and willingly have to endure a slightly high-tempered cab driver. He simply refused to drive into the market because of the jam! I called the production manager and passed the call to the cab driver to let them sort things out. Already my head was swimming from lack of sleep and now I have to deal with transportation issues. This is unbelievable.
That was only daytime. But when the night comes, this market was bustling with music, alcohol and plenty of young Thai patrons. There was plenty of music bands playing at the bars and restaurant type establishments situated mainly at the side of the road. But I was too exhausted already after filming to visit any of the places and decided to hire a motorist to take me back to the hotel. It was nearing midnight and tomorrow I've got a plane to catch!
In my hotel room, I watched as much Thai television as I could. The commercials they produced are really one-of-kind, very much similar to the Japanese. I don't need to understand the language, just the editing and characterisations of the actors were enough to keep me entertained! There's also one TV channel in the Thai channel that kept me glued - full of black magic, half-naked bodies, deception and mystery. That's the beauty with Thais and Japanese. They're actually quite similar in many aspects. The way they treat their guests are impeccable. They are polite, cultured and full of respect for each other.
As I bid farewell to my dear friend, my mind is full only of fond memories. And lots of interesting stories to share with my acting students.
THANK YOU! If you enjoy my blog, kindly click "Join this site" button on the left side of this page AND
*Click "Like" on my Official Facebook and follow my Twitter
*For enquiry about my coaching and requests to write and feature your product/services here in my blog, kindly click Email
* BMW Film Awards Best Actor
* Jury Duty
* Worldwide Photo Exhibit
* Endorsement Value
* World Cup KFC commercial
* Controversial but Most-Watched Episode
* The Golden Shorts Fame