The Quest for the Funarium

Today I woke up a tad nervous. Here we were in Bangkok with a week sprawled out in front of us during which Collin would be working all day every day. I started thinking, “I’ve got two tiny pals, and I want to do more than just bide our time swimming in the hotel pool and playing on the hotel playground.” Sure, that stuff is fun, but I’d like it to be what we’re choosing to do; I don’t want to feel like it’s our fishbowl of activities that we can handle.

So, today was a day of venturing. First, Sen and I headed to Starbucks at 0’dark thirty. She woke up at 4:30 am and by 5:50, I realized that our day had begun. So, we threw on some clothes and got some drinks. Then we headed to a city park.

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Collin and Junes met us there; Collin showed up just in time to witness his little Sen chasing rainbows.

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We walked back to the hotel by way of a fruit stand. We put the girls down for naps, Collin went to work, and I researched what Sen, Junes, and I were going to do for the day.

When they awoke, I informed them that we were going to the Funarium. Yes, like a planetarium but instead it’s a Funarium. They were pumped.

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I googled the place and then took a screen shot of it on my iphone. I had the phone number and the address. I was set.

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I gave the cab driver the address: 111 Sukumvit 33 Soi, Bangkok, Thailand.

 

About ten minutes in, I had this feeling that we weren’t actually headed in the right direction. It felt like we were headed really far outside of town. So, I tried to use my Thai cell phone to call the number. It didn’t work. I asked the driver to call it for me because I was sure I was doing something wrong.

He assured me that he knew where he was going and that the phone call was unnecessary.

We arrived at 111th street about an hour later after fighting our way through stand still traffic.

There was definitely no Funarium at that address.

So, I asked him to try 33rd street.

About another hour later, we arrived to another non-Funarium address.

Finally, he called the phone number, and they told us that they had changed addresses. The Funarium is on 26th street now, in case you’re ever in Bangkok with a 31/2 year old who is hell bent on finding it (despite your low-moment attempt about 2 hours in when you may try bribing her with ice cream to forego the funarium).

About two and half hours later, we finally found it. Thank God it actually was fun. Sen and Junes were troopers, and they deserved all the fun that they had there.

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We played and played and ate dinner and then took a cab back to our hotel. I felt victorious! It’s so exhilarating to feel like we can do this. Sure, we got lost for a while. But I won’t make those same mistakes again, and our experience at the Funarium was so worth it all. I’m sure I’ll make new mistakes, but I’ll have even more confidence by then that it really does all work out in the end.

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It’s so empowering to travel my way around a busy, huge city with my two tiny pals where no one really speaks my language and vice versa.

I learned today that an address that reads 111 Sukumvit 33 Soi, Bangkok, Thailand is actually described to the driver as “Sukumvit 33.” Forget everything else in there.

So, when I gave the driver the address “111 Sukumvit 33 Soi” he took us up to 111th street, when in fact, we should’ve been going to 33rd street. But really, it wasn’t the right address at all because that info was outdated. So, the ultimate lesson is: learn how to use my Thai cell phone. Call the destination. Put them on the phone with the taxi driver.

 

But really what I learned today is: it’s an adventure. And people are just people wherever you go. And usually, there are enough kind souls along the way that you’ll get the help you need to eventually get where you’re trying to go.

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14 Responses to The Quest for the Funarium

  1. Mom says:

    love the attitude you have linds…and it sounds like sen has the same “can do” point of view…”can do” even if it has obstacles…great lesson….love the tush shot of junes…was she looking in the mirror?and loving it? and aren’t we all chasing rainbows….experiencing the unusually beautiful before it evaporates away….

  2. Mom says:

    oh and i love and miss you so much…

  3. dad says:

    Scrappy!! Signature tenacity!!

    It’s a good policy to ask the cab driver the fare after you show the address. When I was stationed there, fares often were negotiated, like most goods in shops. You probaby know that from your many trips outside of the U.S.

    • Lindsay says:

      The cab fare here is now on a meter, so you see exactly how much it is costing. This was an address mishap on my part, but it would be nice if the cabbies knew the city better. Apparently a lot of them come from the rural northeast and move to the city to drive taxis; this means oftentimes they don’t know the city any better than we do.

  4. Mers says:

    Awesome. Love the pictures and your tenacity like dad said. I would have been crying and thinking the cabbie was trying to scam us or kidnap us. You’re such a great Mommy!

  5. Laura says:

    Linds you are a brave woman! It can be so scary to wander around a city when you can’t understand their language, especially with two kids! I can only imagine! But it’s so true that people are people and you can’t let unfamiliar language and culture hinder your experiences, because that’s quite beside the point!

    In Costa Rica their culture tells them to give directions even when they don’t know where you are trying to go because it’s rude to say “I don’t know.” I walked a lot of miles in San Jose! haha

    • Lindsay says:

      Haha, Laura! I didn’t know about that experience you had in Costa Rica. That’s pretty funny. And yeah…the language barrier was a bigger deal than I thought it would be in Sukumvit. It’s not really touristed by Westerners so much as people from other parts of Asia. So English isn’t really common there.

  6. Jessic says:

    I love Sen’s pink wristband that is wrapped around her tiny, chubby ankle. That cracks me up. So glad you found the funarium. Hilarious name. You guys are all blessed to have each other. I mean ‘blessed’ in the most sincere meaning of the word–full hearted and favored:)

  7. Jessic says:

    *And by ‘Sen’ I mean ‘Junes’–I realize she is the one with the pink wristband on her tiny, chubby ankle. There is no chub on Sen! 🙂

    • Lindsay says:

      Haha! That’s so funny; I know. The chub on Junes’ body is only getting cuter and CUTER now that she’s getting tan. She looks like a toasted marshmallow with the little white creases betraying her natural coloring.

  8. Linda says:

    Lindsay, you are amazing! I am loving reading about your travels and seeing the pictures of your beautiful little girls. How lucky Senya and Juniper are to have you as their mommy!

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