Friday, May 05, 2006

They foam at the mouth

In Noel Coward's "Mad Dogs and Englishmen" he says that "In Bangkok at 12 o'clock, they foam at the mouth and run." We have now been to Bangkok six times without ever witnessing such behavior(Brits would say "behaviour")but there's always a first time. Many years ago, on our first visit to Asia, Carol had discovered that the occupancy rate at the legendary Oriental Hotel was extremely low, due to some revolt or other. We were able to stay there at a quite reasonable rate and it has been our digs in Bangkok ever since. The service is impeccable and the hotel a dream. Located right on the Chao Phrya River with every room having a view of this busy stream, it defines Old World luxury. With approximately one staff member for every two guests, they don't miss much. A couple of years ago, a restaurant manager noticed that a bee had spooked Carol by buzzing around her too closely. He proceeded to have a special ripe mango cut up and presented to "make your day better, Madam" As returning guests, we are always treated with special care. This time they upgraded us to a deluxe room, with large sitting area, dressing room and marble bath. On one of our visits, Ira's mother, Pearl, accompanied us and enjoyed the luxurious surroundings and attentive service. We are not in the class of Joseph Conrad, Somerset Maugham and the hundreds of royal guests who have graced the Oriental, but we get the same treatment. This is why we keep returning.

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