August 2, 2013 – Day 002
When I say that we live in Bangkok, it is a bit of a misnomer. Our family technically lives in Pak Kret, a burg north of Thailand’s most populous city (eight million in Bangkok proper and climbing).
Where we live is an enclave where other expatriates hang their hats. I would not describe where we live as a bubble or a city-state unto itself because right outside our village is the boisterous city of Pak Kret with its tiny shops, maze-like streets, and huge malls. While there are walls, they are not high. While there are controlled entrances and exits, they are not imposing. We can stay in our community and we can enjoy the community at large. It is not a mutually exclusive decision. So while I will not describe where we reside as a bubble, I will classify it as a semi-porous mesh trapezoid (or SPMT, for short).
The SPMT is a fairly large area. To walk from one side to another would take a shade under forty-five minutes. Actually, it probably take longer as you would have to take frequent rests to re-hydrate yourself because the heat and humidity leeches the life out of you. So, to move around the SPMT, most people have golf carts. Our family is no different and allow me to introduce you to the newest member of our transportation family…
We have no nickname for our trusty steed as of yet. Our neighbor’s cart, which is green with a black stripe, has been christened The Green Hornet. To be consistent, I would like to bestow the moniker of Black Beauty upon our golf cart.
I can always explain the reference to the kids after the fact.
Our golf cart is gas-powered and while I have never driven a golf cart before, driving is vehicle is somewhat like the experience of deja vu. Driving this golf cart is eerily similar to driving the Autopia cars at Disneyland.
The putt-putt-putt sound is the same. The hesitation that occurs between pressing the accelerator and actually moving is the same.
One of the things not the same is not I cannot tap the bumper of the cart in front of me. That’s frowned upon here.
Also, the golf cart here has no tracks to follow as they do in Autopia. On the plus side, I don’t need a FastPass to ride Black Beauty.
Just to make things even more interesting for our adventure in Thailand, we are using the golf cart to teach our oldest child how to drive. Not only will our eldest first learn to drive in a doorless six-seater, but the teen will be taught while driving on the left-hand side of the road.
Can’t wait to see what happens when we arrive back in the States and our oldest takes to the road.