Thailand for farang

Bangkok Ratchaprasong deadly bombing

My husband and I decided to drive to Bangkok on sunday to see Jens Maes, a friend in Belgium that had a boxing game in Bangkok. Sunday evening we went to see Jens’s boxing game at BTS station National Stadium.

Monday we met up with Jens to have lunch together and decided to eat at Siam Paragon. After a good meal we both went our way. At about 14:30 Jens went back to National Stadium and my husband and I had a discussion about where to leave the car. It was parked at Siam Square and my husband wanted to leave it there and take the sky bridge to Central World to do some shopping, because traffic is always jammed after 14:00 at that location. I wanted to move it to Central World as we had to drive that direction anyway if we go back home after shopping and it will stay this crowded. Like in many of our unimportant discussions he lets me have my way.

We parked our car near the exit of Ratchadamri road as we always forget where we left our car and because we had to take that road to drive back home. At about a quarter to seven we decided to head home and moved downstairs. We went to the ground floor to take the escalators to the parking, but had a quick stop at the restroom. While I was waiting for my husband outside the restroom next to the exit doors I heard an extremely big blast. I heard a lot of screaming and it felt like there was a big impact on the building as the windows shook.

bangkokblast-Erawan-Shrine We were standing about there when the bomb exploded.

My husband asked me what that might be. I said very nonchalant ‘Probably another bomb that went off near the bts station of somewhere close by.’ as I was thinking about the previous non lethal bombs in Bangkok (all previous incidents when we lived in Thailand had no casualties). I had no idea it was this big of a disaster.

My husband and I wanted to drive back home as we could imagine it getting more crowded after the explosion. It was only when we arrived on the street of Ratchadamri I realized this was not anything like the previous cases. This was huge. There was tension all over the place. Traffic was more chaotic than it normally is. I looked behind us and saw everybody looking at the crosspoint about 100 to 200 meters behind us. Above us on the bridges people looked shocked in the direction of Erawan Shrine. Ambulances and police tried to run into traffic to get to the disaster site.

police-into-traffic

Citizens on motorcycles run through the traffic other than usual. They drove on the right side of the road making gestures to the incoming traffic to turn around.

It was so chaotic. I shared on twitter that it was extremely difficult to get out of the scene in Bangkok and fastly learned that this bomb was not comparable with the previous ones I was thinking about, which I actually should have know because something that makes that loud of noise and impact must make casualties.If we would not have moved the car odds are high that we would have walked past the crosspoint or walked over the skybridge at the time of the explosion. My husband and I were lucky, like many people who were very close to the disaster. Our thoughts are with those who are injured and with the families of the deceased ones. Our condolence to the families and friends.

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