This post is written by our co-president, Simran Thakral. Check out her original post here.
Street vendors clearly mark their territory in one of the busiest districts of the city. Occupying two lanes of a four-lane road, ‘the open-air buffet’ as I sarcastically refer to it serves food to an army of bedazzled tourists and enthusiastic locals on a daily basis. Coming from far and wide, people sample the shark-fin soup the district is famous for. Every dish comes with a free side of pollution. Yes, you guessed it- all food is freshly cooked in the makeshift kitchen docked in the corner of the road.
Welcome to Yaowarat, Bangkok’ s very own China Town.
At the end of the very long road is a building with a red roof. That’s home- home sweet home. I never thought I’d say this, especially not at 2 am waiting for my connecting flight at Dubai airport, but I really miss Bangkok.
I miss the convenience of having street vendors selling delicious delicacies at odd hours of the day. I miss the hustle and bustle of the city. I miss everything of this city including the imperfections. With the risk of being clichéd, it’s imperfectly perfect.
Flashback two years ago, however, I was dying to leave home. It’s understandable when it takes you up to an hour and a half to take a taxi back home from school using the expressway. Especially during Chinese New Year, the traffic would have been so unbearable that I would often prefer to walk a mile in the scorching heat than wait it out. I was literally counting down to the day I graduated school so that I could go to university abroad and not have to deal with this anymore.
But now that I look back, I guess my main reason for wanting to leave was because I had only ever lived in this city. Bangkok is a place you’ll only truly appreciate if you’ve lived elsewhere.
It’s probably been said a thousand of times before but I’m going to say it again. What makes Bangkok are its inhabitants. The people are easygoing, carefree, and extremely welcoming.
It’s a growing metropolitan with new projects springing up everywhere. Every break I return home, there’s always something new to explore. I’ve recently found out the riverside area near my home, Ta-tian, has turned into a hipster area!
Does the traffic still annoy me? I’m not going to lie, of course it does. There are a few instances where the flaws become apparent. Unlike before, however, it’s not a deal breaker. Every city in the world has flaws it just depends on how you personally embrace the pros and minimize the cons.
They say distance makes the heart grow fonder. Well, that’s certainly the case for me. I wouldn’t mind at all moving back here a few years after I graduate. Till then, I’ll just look forward to short breaks when I can return back home.