It is Friday morning and the usual dilemma rears its grotesque head for those of us living on Ladprao Road or any other problematic traffic area. . Indeed, the dilemma is worse than usual this week because it is the end of the month and so very many people are going to go out and spend their salaries on khao, khap khao and bia, Worse still, the sky is darkening and there is a pretty good chance that there will be a storm some time later this afternoon.
Put these factors together and we enter a twilight zone in which taxis, usually available in a plethora of choices, become rarer to find than maturity at a PAD rally. Those that can be found will inevitably take the opportunity to demonstrate their power over the poor pundit by refusing to go to Ladprao or in fact anywhere they do not want to go – which is most of Bangkok, as it happens. Going to the airport is probably OK but we can’t all go and sleep in the airport just because it is the only place a taxi driver is prepared to go.
So here is the dilemma: at what time should I plan to leave the office in order to make it home before midnight and without spending hours sat in a stationary taxi listening to the taxi driver moaning about the traffic. I could sneak out early and try to make it home before the traffic builds up too much – that would mean leaving by no later than 3:30 – but that means not being able to do much of the work I need to finish today and it will be no good anyway if it is raining then. Alternatively, I could wait until later – eight o’clock should probably be safe, although it is far from guaranteed. Another option would be to leave at normal time and then travel on the tube to Siam Square or somewhere and do some shopping in a hi-so place and then hope to get a taxi from Mo Chit around 7:30-8. Again, that does not work if it is raining and that would mean a journey to Ratchada and standing in the rain there. Sigh.
It is more than 7 km to walk and, in Bangkok, it feels a lot longer than that because of the various pavement issues. However, I have walked home before and am prepared to do so again, if I do not have too much stuff to carry.