Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Five Things Purchased in Thailand

I'm sure this one is fairly obvious, though we made the idiotic mistake of buying the cheap sunscreen which turned to be a glorified body lotion that washed away instantly in the ocean. So, we were horrible looking lobsters/lepers cowering in the shade of the palm trees by the last week of vacation. Lesson learned. (but I swear I say that every time. I always forget that I'm a Scandinavian Princess.)

Usually I buy multiples of something inexpensive to bring home to friends and family, but this time I decided to splurge on one really amazing thing to keep forever all to myself. I bought this hand woven all silk throw at Cabbages and Condoms because A)it was still cheaper than the ones at Jim Thompson, B) it was gorgeous and C) best of all, a portion of the proceeds go to help provide AIDS prevention programs throughout Thailand and (of course) to the craftswomen who make these beautiful weavings. This one is a turquoise blue with a pattern of brown and gold diamonds and heavy fringe. Its big enough to use as a blanket but lately Shenzhen has been a little on the chilly side, so I've been wearing it as a shawl when I leave the house.

I'm not a big place mat person normally (they just seem unnecessary and are usually frumpy, like coasters or doilies on chair arms) but these were on the tables at Away Resort where we stayed on Koh Kood island and I fell in love with them right away. They are just simple bamboo sticks woven with yarn, but I thought the patterns and color combinations were totally original and completely striking. They are looking very cool on our dining room table.

Cipro; he who trods in the developing world knows it well. One in our party who shall remain nameless became very ill from (I suspect) reheated hotel buffet noodles that looked suspect to other unnamed members of our party. Luckily, Bangkok is overflowing with nice tidy pharmacies where no prescription is necessary and the helpful pharmacists speak excellent English. (I bought a couple extra packs for the inevitable but hopefully distant next time).

I'm not a big souvenir person, but I do have a weakness in my heart for funny children's things. These are tiny, you couldn't possibly fit any grown up stuff in them, but if you are a kid and you need a funny place to stash your seashells, bubble gum and all the extra baht your parents gave you, then these are the perfect thing.

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