Monday, October 13, 2008

Bangkok October 2008

Bangkok traffic. On a good day.

Rama VIII Bridge

Chris with Singha beer, tom yam kung and baked calamari with *lots* of pepper. yum.

We drove past the parliament on the way to this restaurant and saw that the streets were still barricaded with tires and barbed wire in preparation for the protests. The Monday protests had been canceled to pay respect to the two people who died during the demonstrations last week (it was the day of their cremation). There is also rumor that the two factions may be reaching a compromise.

On, Jonny and I at a seafood restaurant

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Bangkok October 2008

Northern Russia from the plane

As I suffer from the inevitable jetlag that accompanies traveling, I feel inspired to update my blog at 3am. Since my last post, I have uprooted (once again) from Georgetown, Washington DC and replanted in Philadelphia. I'm now starting a residency in pediatrics at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (I just couldn't get enough of internship so I had to do another). This is hopefully the last move for at least 3 years, given that's how long it should take to finish a pediatrics residency.

The CHOP pediatrics program, aside from being one of the largest in the country (40 something residents per year), is an incredibly supportive program. People are rooting for my success and education, which is a very different vibe than at Georgetown. As sexy as it was to be a life-saving surgeon, I feel much better suited for pediatrics.

I'm now back home for the first time in over 3 years and Bangkok doesn't seem to have changed as much as I had expected. The taxis are a different color, the airport has free wifi and things are slightly more expensive, but the city still has the same sense of disarray with its millions of people and unstable government. I love being home!

Yesterday my mother and I headed to the Chachuchak market in search of home decor (my Philadelphia apartment still looks barren). The Chachuchak market is an enormous outdoor weekend market where, with a little determination and a lot of walking, *anything* can be found, from snakes, fish, dogs to antiques to American army surplus. At the end of our expedition we were walking on a side street as it was getting dark when my mother accidentally came head to head with a baby elephant walking in the opposite direction. She screamed in surprise while the elephant just kept on walking by... I would give the elephant the right of way any day.

My dad at a local coconut seller: 10 cents a coconut

Chinese restaurant lunch appetizers: jellyfish in the middle, pigs ears on the right, and "thousand year old eggs" (the blue things). The eggs really did taste like they were rather old. Eating the jellyfish, I felt a vengeful satisfaction- I still harbor a grudge against the jellyfish that stung me some 20 years ago and left a scar.

I was reading the newspaper this morning and on the front page just beneath the headline highlighting government problems "PAD Leaders Surrender", I found these advertisements:

USA = Foodland. There's something seriously wrong with this perception, given that over 50% of the US population suffers from obesity.

Bangkok: the capital of sex change operations. Cheap too! I'm wondering why "orchiectomy" is crossed off though...?

And then on the side of the front page, a blurb about lizards: "Wildlife officials believe monitor lizards, seized in the Northeast, were destined for dining tables in neighboring countries".

Surgery Roast May 2008

As I was downloading pictures from my vacation I came across these ones from our May 2008 Georgetown Surgery Roast!

Krit and Aimee

Babushkina and I

Kiran, one of our chiefs, once again spoon, er..., hand feeding Alex??