It’s my last full day in Thailand and I did what any good Thai would do – I went shopping! Everyone knows that I am not much of a shopper, so it will really shock to learn that I spent eight hours at activity that I normally detest. At 11 AM my friend, Joan, and I hopped on the subway (the MRT) and headed two stops north to the IT Mall. Malls are an interesting concept in Bangkok. Everything is connected to something else, which is connected to another something else, all of which is connected to the subway and/or the Sky Train. In the case of the IT Mall, it was a tall, narrow building containing five floors of stores that specialize in everything technological. To the left of the IT Mall is the Fortune Hotel, which is accessed by walking through the Fortune Shopping Mall. To the right of the IT Mall is another mall (the name of which I never did find out). All three of these malls are interconnected and go on for blocks. Shopping here is rather like living on the Outer Banks and driving down the main highway – because all the towns run together the visitors never know whether they are in Nags Head, Kill Devil Hills, or Kitty Hawk. It took a couple of hours before I could tell which of the three malls I was in at any given moment.
But there’s more. At the far end, these three malls are connected to a Tesco Supermarket. Now, supermarkets in Bangkok are not like anything you’ve ever seen before. Tesco (like Big C, or any of the other major grocery chains) is a multi-story affair with escalators to transport you from floor to floor. In addition to food and sundries they carry most everything that a normal department store would carry – sort of a ‘Super WalMart meets JCPenney’ affair. Fortunately, we did NOT go into the Tesco. I did however, get a lot accomplished at the IT Mall. I picked up some 4 Gig flash drives for extra photo storage and an extra storage card for my camera. I’ve also been on the lookout for a good telephoto lens for my camera – this I’ll definitely need for my African Safari – so I priced them here as well.