December 1-10, 2010
Sometime early this month our neighbor, the Novotel hotel, at the corner of Ploenchit and Ruam Rudee will open for business. Sigh ... yet another place to dine and dance*.
Neighbors at night.
I love Christmas in Bangkok because here it is a purely secular holiday: just parties, decorations and gifts ... Bangkokians never imported that dreary little Jesus creep into their fun filled blast.
Tomorrow is Thailand's King's 83rd birthday. The Athenee Residence has its own honor display of the event.
The lobby of The Oriental gets a makeover just for the King's birthday.*
* The King is 83; The Oriental is 109.
This "Love and Friendship" display at the newly renovated River City is a tribute to the King of Thailand.
The about-to-open Novotel hotel will be our nearest neighbor when it opens in just a few days. It would have been open now had it not been for the disturbances that rocked Bangkok in April and May. Whatever. Though not all the guest facilities will be open when the first guests arrive, the place should still be the closest multi-star hotel to Nana and yet claim an address on Ploenchit.
This afternoon was cache mending time in Lumpini Park. "Rocky", one of my best frequented Bangkok caches* disappeared on Pearl Harbor Day so my Post Pearl Harbor Day was dedicated to hiding plastic under a big stone.
* "Watched By Pretty Thai Girls" is by far my most popular Bangkok cache. Is it the name that does it?
December 9, 2010
This message alerts U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Thailand that media reports indicate that supporters of the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship (aka UDD or red-shirts) will hold a rally tomorrow, December 10, 2010 (Constitution Day) at the Democracy Monument, scheduled from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm. Demonstrators will begin gathering at the Democracy Monument several hours before the demonstration and more than 10,000 people are expected to participate.
We are not aware of any general, specific, or implied threat to U.S. citizens or U.S. interests throughout this period. However, even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and possibly escalate into violence with little or no warning. You should avoid areas that may be targeted for demonstrations and exercise caution if within the vicinity of any demonstrations or large gatherings. You should monitor local media to keep updated with the latest information about demonstrations and areas to avoid. Although the level of violence in Bangkok and Chiang Mai subsided following the UDD protests in April and May 2010, the potential for random acts of politically-motivated violence remains. You should maintain a heightened sense of awareness, be cognizant of any unattended packages/bags in public/crowded places, and report any suspicious behavior to the nearest law enforcement personnel.
For the latest security information, Americans living and traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs Internet web site at http://travel.state.gov, where the current Worldwide Caution, Travel Alerts, Travel Warnings, and health-information resources can be found. Up-to-date information on security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll free in the U.S. and Canada or, for callers in other areas by calling a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
We strongly encourage U.S. citizens in Thailand to register with the Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy in Bangkok or the Consulate General in Chiang Mai or through the State Department's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). For information on general crime and security issues, U.S. citizens may also consult the Department of State's Country Specific Information for Thailand and the Worldwide Caution, located at the Department of State's Bureau of Consular Affairs website. U.S. citizens may also obtain up-to-date information on security conditions by calling 1-888-407-4747 from the United States and Canada, or 202-501-4444 from overseas.
The American Citizen Services Unit of the U.S. Embassy Bangkok is located at 95 Wireless Road, Bangkok 10330, Thailand. The American Citizen Services Unit of the U.S. Embassy can be reached by calling 66-2-205-4049 and by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. The emergency after-hours telephone number is 66-2-205-4000.
The U.S. Consulate General in Chiang Mai is located at 387 Wichayanond Road in Chiang Mai. The American Citizen Services Unit of the Consulate General can be reached by calling 66-53-107-777 and by e-mail at email@example.com. The after-hours emergency telephone number is 66-81-881-1878.
This email is UNCLASSIFIED
Here in Bangkok the All Seasons shopping complex brought us Xmas cheer with none of the creepy Christ trappings.
Where are they going?
Next: Part II