August 21st, 2006

Day 28: Chiang Mai to Bangkok by bus

This morning we checked out of our hostel and took a red pickup truck to the Chiang Mai bus terminal. The red pickups are government-regulated, or so I believe. The bus maps have pictures of red pickups on them, so that is something at least. In any case the pickups are much cheaper than Tuk Tuks for getting around, and a bit more comfortable at that.

We decided on taking the first class bus to Bangkok. That sounds fancy, but really it just means that you pay more for air conditioning that works, a hole that serves as a toilet, occasional cups of soda pop, and a small lunch. It was nice though, and the trip went by uneventfully.

I spent most of the trip reading the book I got last time I was in Bangkok, “No Logo.” Mateo told me about it and so far, a hundred pages in, I am hooked. It is all about the way large companies today don’t manufacture goods as much as they market brands. The brand, or logo, has become the thing we buy into, with the actual merchandise being secondary to the brand it is attached to. It is very insightful and easy to read and understand, while its facts are often backed up with citations and charts. It reminds me of a conversation I had with the man who is making my suit for me ( Brand and quality do not, it seems, need to be attached to each other.

We arrived in Bangkok without issue, but being a bit tired, we were short with each other until we got some food in us. Tomorrow we head out to take care of some business around town.

Until then, take care.

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