The Biggest Jewelry Box Ever

Matt and I are on vacation for Chinese New Year (I love working in Asia) and we’re visiting Keppy in China. We spent our first day in Bangkok, where we saw the Grand Palace, what looks like the biggest, shiniest jewelry box on earth.

We had to take a water taxi to get there – 18 baht for us, 130 baht for unsuspected tourist in “tour groups” (though the brochure was worth at least 120)

From Bangkok

In English style, guards stood outside

From Bangkok

In Asian style, eight enormous demon and monkey statues also stood guard to the entrances

From Bangkok
From Bangkok

The buildings in the central area were painted with 24 karat gold leaf and lined with colored glass tiles that twinkled like jewels in the tropical sun – rubies, diamonds, sapphires, emeralds.

From Bangkok
From Bangkok
From Bangkok

There are three main buildings beside the temple of the Emerald Buddha, each done in a different style. The first style is Cambodian,
painted in gold leaf. (Thailand and Cambodia were once one kingdom.) The second building is Thai style, and the last is a combination, Thai on bottom and Cambodian on the top.

From Bangkok
From Bangkok
From Bangkok
From Bangkok

Inside these buildings are the ashes of the kings and the sacred Buddhist scrolls. One building was built for the Emerald Buddha, but it was too small for the ceremonies.

I forget what this gold thing is, but I love the men holding it. They are demons and monkeys (though they look the same to me).

From Bangkok
From Bangkok
From Bangkok
From Bangkok
From Bangkok
From Bangkok
From Bangkok

I also forget what these are, but they were pretty, too

From Bangkok

This is part of the mural that wrapped around the wall of the religious part of the palace. It tells the story of the first Rama King. Like the story of Helen of Troy, the demon stole his wife the Queen and the king called upon a monkey demon to help him. Many battles ensued – including one in which the monkey unknowingly fights his bastard half-mermaid, half-monkey, star-yawning son. This fight shows when the bad guys put all of the good guys to sleep.

From Bangkok

The Emerald Buddha is the main attraction. It’s actually carved from one solid piece of Jade. You cannot point your toes at the Buddha, because feet are dirty. He has 3 sets of clothes for different seasons, which the King puts on him in a ceremony. Right now he’s wearing his winter clothes.

From Bangkok

This is his palace.

From Bangkok

These are the gardens outside of the main reception hall for state banquets. It gives me the feeling I had outside of Versailles.

From Bangkok

This is the main reception hall. The bottom is European style and the top is Thai style.

From Bangkok

Here’s a link to the album, with more shiny parts:

Bangkok

Then, we had some yummy real Pad Thai, and later some Indian. Next stop, the tropical island of Ko Chang

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s