Smiling back at you, Bangkok

I admit that I might have been too biased with memories smeared by past experiences. Bangkok cab service has definitely improved. Though still consistently trapped in the good old heavy traffic, I did not once fear for my life. Previously. zigzagging cabs in tight one-way streets flipped my heart arteries all the time. Because of that, I have always rejected vacation ideas that will land me in this city.

Beijing cleaned up for the Olympics. Singapore put up prettier Christmas lights for APEC. If Bangkok has changed because of some event, I am very happy that whatever-that-is has taken place here.

I commented one night that this city is full of Manhattan-like lights. Then I was reminded that this is really the city of smiles. Yes indeed. It has even rubbed off on the usually stoic customs officers. Not just in the official airport where they are probably contractually binded to smile at tourists, even the tireless ones in the free trade zones are surprisingly nice.

I may actually be ready to return for a touristy visit soon. But right now, I just want a confirmed flight home.

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