Today, Saturday, November 20, 2016. I decided to cycle across to Lumpini Park, which by coincidence used to be my old haunting ground from when I first started cycling here in Thailand back in 2009. My purpose of going down there was to actually witness all the activities that goes off there on a Saturday. It is literally a wonderful park for everyone. Anyone visiting Bangkok should visit there especially at the weekends – it is busy and full of life.
I arrived there early, knowing quite well that I was actually prohibited from cycling around it until 10:00. I decided to push my bike around instead taking photographs of the runners and all those that were out there attempting to exercise before the temperature began to sore.
Lumpini Park has a number of free facilities in which to tone up your body, lose those odd pounds here and there, which might just get you into better shape.
You can even go for a swim in the lake if you so wish, although I think that is reserved for the monitor lizards and the fish only.
I even saw some young adults practising some of Thailand’s martial arts, they looked very good and extremely disciplined. Later, I came across a man with his daughter on a one wheel Segway, he seemed to be very confident on it to say that he had his arms full. He certainly had more courage than I would have done with an infant of that age.
I decided to leave the park and to get some refreshments from one of the many traders down Sarasin Road. The women that served me was very friendly and more than willing to chat with me while she attended to my drink. Thankfully her English was better than my Thai.
Luckily, the Probike shop was just across the road, so I took the opportunity in going into it, so as speak to my friend in there, the one on an early blog who had sold me a bike back in 2009.
Afterwards, I went to find the ‘green line’. The ‘green line’ is an elevated walkway, that can take you from Sarasin Road, the top side of Lumpini Park, across to Benjakitti Park, almost 2¼ km away.
For those of you, that like walking or cycling this is a fantastic route to cut across the city without having to literally confront traffic. Also, there are some interesting sights along the way too. Its quiet and you may come across other walkers and cyclists as well.
The root takes you past some rather opulent looking apartments and hotels. Luckily, the residents’ view was sheltered somewhat by the trees, otherwise, they would have looked down on rather shabby looking shanties, hovels, whatever you want to call it. Every city in the world have these and for reasons, I don’t know why?
On the part of the journey, I came across a young man and his adorable looking daughter. He happily agreed to take some photographs of me on my bicycle. He was very obliging. He was an American, who came from New England. Almost all the American’s that I have met here in Thailand have been extremely friendly and full of beans.
He agreed to take a photograph of me in all of my cycle regalia.
The green line continued, on through the gathering of trees, there was an almost romantic feel to it, quiet and peaceful, as I continued cycling at a leisurely pace. Runners past me, even one that was barefooted, I bet the soles of his feet were dirty.
In the distance the skyline, it never fails to impress me with the exquisite architecture, sometimes unbelievable. I eventually entered Benjakitti Park, near the Thai Tobacco Factory. The lake here is the centrepiece, with a running track and a cycle track that runs around it. In the distance more of the unique buildings that makes Bangkok such a wondrous city.
I discovered this park by chance, by just cycling along Rama IV and then attempting to cut across onto Sukhumvit Road. There looking larger than life was this place, looking rather incongruous, sitting between two busy, polluting, belching trunk roads. It was an American cyclist that showed me the green line. Since then I have shown scores of other cyclists this route if only to share my experience with them. Cycling around this park is very relaxing, ones, however, comes across changes that have been made occasionally, as the park gets cared for and maintained.
Occasionally, you see something different, I couldn’t help but take a photograph of this. Friends caring for each other – respect in harmony.
Yes, this is another one of those parks where you can hire bicycles too. At first glance for an inexperienced cyclist it looks quite daunting, but in reality, it isn’t that bad.
The park is slowly becoming empurple at this time of year, with the flower arrangements. If you look carefully you can see the flowers right at the top end of the park.
It was here that I came across another charming American, this woman came from Arizona, the home of the ‘London Bridge,’ as I put it to her. I’m certain it’s got lots more to its name than that if I only I stopped to think about it. She was a very influential individual and she spared me what seemed like well over ten minutes of her time.
I eventually set off back to Lumpini Park, if only to take photographs of the cycling scene there, with the cyclists exhibiting all their panache. One peloton group cycled around the park a little too fast for my liking, but still, all the same, they were out enjoying themselves.
As I cycled around, before coming across my friend Greg. Greg was yet another American, I’m not too sure where he was from, but he’d taught Psychology at our university, along with English, before I came along. He always astounded me of his love for life and how much he enjoyed his happy-go-lucky lifestyle. Normally, he rides around on a monstrous looking motorbike, but today I caught him on this. Although the tyres were that large, I think they might have been taken from his motorbike.
The day in the park came to its end, highlighting the fact that it’s ‘nice people, that makes the world go round and nothing else. I headed back to face the music of the busy trunk roads, as they led me back towards Bang Wa. Another cycle experience over with and another exciting blog to script.