Sunday, June 24, 2012

Bangkok 2 Jim Thompson House (6/24/2012)

Sunday, June 24, 2012
The day started out sunny again. After a nice breakfast at the hotel, with a choice of eggs and a small buffet, we headed back to the Metro station. More spirit houses:
This time we transferred to the BTS, the elevated train line:
We had to then transfer from the Sukhumvit Line to the Silom Line. At the Siam station we could see a giant Coke bottle:
We ended at the National Stadium station, from where we could see a football game:
That's soccer for you Yanks!
We walked down Soi Kaemsan 2. A Delonix regia/Royal Poinciana tree:
The William Warren Library:
William Warren was a friend of Jim Thompson and his biographer. We have no idea why there is an army tank in the entry.
The Jim Thompson House Museum:
Jim Thompson was an architect, then during WWII he worked with OSS. After the war he retired to Thailand and discovered Thai silk. He marketed the silk in the U.S. and revived the silk weaving industry in Bangkok. He was also a collector of Southeast Asian antiques and art.
An adjoining art gallery had an exhibit called "Art on the Farm:"
Art using leftovers from daily living on a Thai farm.
The stairs to the gallery displayed wooden climbers:
Silk weaving paraphernalia: 
Cleaning the koi pond:
We then went on a tour of the house.
One of the antiques was a print block for fabric dying:
There were removable pieces in the block to allow for different colors:
Antique porcelain garden stool:
Hot coals were placed inside to warm your seat. (When did they need this in Thailand?! Actually it is a Chinese item.)
Jim Thompson had six traditional Thai houses moved to this property. He joined them together, making each house a room. The living room:
Our guide explains the oldest artifact in the house, a headless Buddha, a 6th-century Dvaravati figure:
Bowl of orchids:
Jim Thompson's spirit house:
I was going to say I don't mean for his own spirit, but who knows! Jim Thompson mysteriously disappeared in Malaysia in 1967, at the age of 61 years.
In the spirit house:
Boat landing shelter:
The 100-year old house that is the living room:
Embroidered art:
The storehouse held Jim Thompson's collection, but now houses the embroidery:
Wooden window shutters with a decorative carved lintel:
The housekeeper's house:
The koi pond:
Wall climber:
Art made with dried flowers, such as the Gomphrena globosa:
"Book" illustrations:
Ceramic bowl pool with Pista stratiotes/Water Lettuce:
Two antiques:
After leaving the Jim Thompson House Museum, we walked along the Saen Saeb Canal:
There goes the commuter boat:
We were to cross that footbridge to Ban Krua:
See the white goat under the bridge?
Crossing the bridge, a view down the canal:
A view up the canal where two boats pass:
Now we are on the goat's side!
A soi/alley cat:
Splayed toes?
The Ban Krua neighborhood was the area of Muslim silk weavers where Jim Thompson conducted business:
His house is just across the canal:
We didn't hear any clacking of looms.
We did see an elderly gentleman trimming the hedge in his PJs:
Not sure if this was a home or a shop or what:
The Fuller brush man:
A plasterer:
Leaving Ban Krua, we crossed the Phayathai Road bridge with elephant decorations:
Go to the Bangkok 3 blog for the next part of the day.

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