A Day in Bangkok …

My Rockjumper cap had arrived in the mail before leaving Australia. I put it on as I stepped into the outside world from the sequestered realm of Customs and Immigration. This, I hoped would improve my chances of finding my limo driver.

Bangkok is a sprawling traffic jam imprisoning some 11 million souls. Skyscrapers of concrete and glass reach up, entwined by tollways, overpasses and bridges. New roads are being built on stilts over old roads desperately trying to keep up with the needs of a populace who all just bought a nice new car. As the Rough Guide puts it …

… under the shadow of the skyscrapers you’ll find a heady mix of chaos and refinement, of frenetic markets, snail’s-pace traffic jams and hushed golden temples, of dispiriting, zombie-like sex shows and early-morning alms-giving ceremonies.

It was early morning when I arrived at the Maruay Gardens Hotel. Way too early to check in but they were kind enough to store my luggage and let me use the wifi. Good old Google Maps showed a park not too far away although the receptionist thought my chances of finding a whole load of birds there were pretty low. I took a taxi to Chatuchak Park, joggerland.

There were a lot of people but I felt really, really special as the only one carrying binoculars …

but, hey, it was worth it. There were birds, mammals, reptiles, trees, grass and a lake. It was a gentle introduction to the birds of Thailand with all day to figure out what they were …

Black-collared Starling
Small Minivet
Oriental Magpie Robin

I managed to identify 18 species of bird, a couple more slipped through to the wicket keeper. Some Squirrels were happy to pose and a couple of reptiles were about although one was the introduced Red-eared Slider. I was far more impressed with this one, especially when it began stalking some pigeons …

Water Monitor
Variable Squirrel

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