TRAVEL PHOTO GALLERY             
1 805 492 1904
30% OFF SALE, SEE HOME PAGE FOR INFORMATION.
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VIEWS OF AND FROM MIDLAND GEMS AND VR GEMCUTTERS HOME OFFICE, LOCATED IN A HIGH RISE COMPLEX, CENTRAL  BANGKOK, INCLUDING SKYLINE VIEWS OF BANGKOK FROM THE OFFICE





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WHILE IN BANGKOK WE CAMPED OUT IN VR GEMCUTTERS AND MIDLANDGEMS HOME OFFICE, WHICH IS IN THE HIGH RISE
COMPLEX ABOVE. COME IN AND SIT FOR AWHILE, DOESN'T MAKE ANY DIFFERENCE IF YOU ARE A BUYER, SELLER, OR JUST
NEED SOME COFFEE, TEA, OR? OUR DOOR IS OPEN ANYTIME WE ARE IN TOWN!I
AND THEY MAKE THEMSELVES AT HOME
CAREFOUR SUPER CENTER,
BANGKOKS EQUIVALENT OF COSTCO.
TRAVELING BURMA JADE DISPLAY AT
A RENTAL KIOSK INSIDE CAREFOUR
AH!..AMERICAN TOURISTS FIND
FAMILIAR EATS INSIDE CAREFOUR.
AND UNFAMILIAR LABELING ON
FAMILIAR PRODUCTS.
THE BOYS ALSO NOTICED THIS
ROCK CLIMBING SUPPLY STORE
"MICHELIN TIRE STORE WAY
OVER HERE"
OH BOY! A MOTORCYCLE SHOP. WE
COULD STOP IF WE WERE NOT ON A BUS.
NOISE POLLUTING POLITICIANS RIDING
AROUND TOWN, PROPAGANDIZING.
OISE
A TYPICAL BANGKOK STREET MARKET,
THIS ONE SELLS MOSTLY FOOD
60 PLUS STORY CONDO BUILDING,
ABANDONED SINCE THE 1997
FINANCIAL CRASH.
DRAGON POWER!
A BEAUTIFUL, FAMOUS, TEMPLE AS
SEEN FROM OUR BOAT ON THE
CHAO PHRYA RIVER.
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SPIRIT HOUSE IN OUR OFFICE
GARDEN
MEMORIAL TO THE SOLDIERS WHO DIED
BUILDING THE WW2 "DEATH RAILWAY"
TRYING TO UNDERSTAND THE ORDEAL
THE SOLDIERS EXPERIENCED.
MANY SOLDIERS REMAINS WERE
RECOVERED ALONG THE TRACKS  BY
RECOLLECTION OF INTERNED FRIENDS
" THEIR NAMES
LIVETH FOREVER "
THAILAND TRIBUTE TO THOSE
WHO SUFFERED UNIMAGINABLE
BRUTALITY.
A WALK THROUGH THE WELL MANICURED GRAVESIGHTS GAVE US TIME TO CONTEMPLATE THE POSSIBILITY
OF A  FUTURE SITUATION, WHERE MANS INHUMANITY TOWARD MAN COULD AGAIN MANIFEST ITSELF. WHAT
KIND OF PEOPLE WERE WE THEN, AND WHAT ARE WE NOW? HAVE WE HUMANS CHANGED THAT MUCH?
A VERY YOUNG ROYAL NAVY SAILOR
LIES INTERNED HERE. I CAN'T
THINK OF ANY GOOD REASON WHY.
THE RIVER THAT NEEDED TO BE BRIDGED AT ANY COST. TODAY A SPEEDBOAT CROSSES  UNDER THE BRIDGE HEADING UP RIVER, OBLIVIOUS TO WHAT HAPPENED HERE.
THE BRIDGE NEEDED TO BE BUILT IN ORDER TO MOVE WAR MATERIAL TO BURMA, TO AVOID LOSSES FROM ALLIED BOMBERS. JAPAN WAS LOSING MANY SHIPS IN THE SEA
LANES TO ALLIED SUBMARINE ACTION.  THE SIZE OF THE BRIDGE  IS SMALL CONSIDERING THE STORIES OF SUFFERING TO BUILD IT. THE REAL NAME OF THE RIVER IS " KWAE
NOI " IN THAI LANGUAGE. TRANSLATION OF KWAI IN THAI LANGUAGE REFERS TO THE MUCH REVERED AND NOBLE  WATER BUFFALO.
VIEWS OF THE BRIDGE IN THE BACKGROUND, PROJECT TRANQUILITY OF THE TIME.
THE THATCHED ROOFED BUILDINGS ARE FLOATING RESTURANTS. THINK ABOUT
HOW MANY CAPTIVES COULD HAVE BEEN SAVED WITH JUST THE WASTED FOOD.
ENTRANCE TO THE MUSEUM CREATED AFTER THE WAR BY BUDDHIST MONKS,
WHO WANTED TO PRESERVE THE HISTORY AND ARTIFACTS. MANY GOOD
SAMARITAN THAI PEOPLE DID EVERYTHING IN THEIR POWER TO HELP PRISONERS
ADDITIONAL VIEWS OF MUSEUM RELICS, INCLUDING A LOCOMOTIVE USED ON THE DEATH RAILWAY.  MONKS GATHERED  RELICS AS DID THE LOCAL THAI PEOPLE. THE
SKELETAL REMAINS IN THE  LAST PICTURE WERE DUG FROM A LATRINE PIT AND PUT ON DISPLAY. THE STORY GOES THAT THOSE SOLDIERS WHO WERE INJURED OR TOO
SICK FOR WORK, WERE DUMPED ALIVE INTO THE LATRINES BY THEIR  CAPTORS. THAI PEOPLE AND MONKS WHO WERE CAUGHT  HELPING THE PRISONERS, WERE
ENSLAVED TO WORK ON THE RAILROAD. AS MANY AS 300,000 THAIS, BURMESE OR OTHER SOUTH EAST ASIANS WERE ENSLAVED AND DIED WORKING ON THE RAILROAD.
TRANQUIL BEACHES, FRESH SEAFOOD AT GOOD PRICES, ORDERS  TAKEN BY
BROKERS WALKING THE BEACH.  PATTAYA, BEING A FAMOUS INTERNATIONAL
DESTINATION ALSO HAS AN INFAMOUS REPUTATION.
LUXURY HOTELS DOT THE PATTAYA
SHORLINE,  PRICED  FROM  $64.00
TO $300.00PER NIGHT
BEAUTIFUL SCENERY ABOUNDS.
PATTAYA HAS CHANGED SINCE
MY FIRST VISIT 45 YEARS AGO
VIEW OF THE OCEAN  FROM THE
MANY BARS, RESTURANTS AND
GUEST HOUSES.
WHAT, MORE DRAGON POWER! MUST
HAVE BREATHED FIRE ON ME ALREADY!
GUEST HOUSES ARE EVERYWHERE, NOTICE THE
POWER AND PHONE POLE WIRING RATS  NEST.
WATER IS STORED IN ROOF TOP TANKS,
AND GRAVITY FED TO FACILITIES BELOW.
A CHINESE TEMPLE DISPLAYS MORE DRAGONS WHICH,
PROTECT PATTAYA FROM EVILS WHICH LURK EVERYWHERE.
PICTURE YOURSELF SITTING ON THE BEACH WITH A GENTLE BREEZE RUSTLING IN THE COCONUT TREES,
HAVING YOUR FAVORITE DRINK, AND SAVORING THE DELICATE TASTE OF DEEP FRIED JIMMINY CRICKETS,
SMALL FROGS, AND GRASSHOPPERS. ALL OF WHICH ARE AVAILABLE FROM THE STREET STALLS.
MASON DIDN'T MUCH LIKE THAI FOOD.
USUALLY HE ORDERED KOW PHAT MAI OW
PAK "FRIED RICE, NO VEGGIES" HOWEVER, HE
WAS RIGHT INSIDE HIS COMFORT ZONE WITH
THE ICE CREAM SUNDAE IN HIS HANDS.
ENTRANCE TO THE PATTAYA ZOO, AN
EXTREMELY CLEAN PLACE WHERE
FOREIGNERS WERE CHARGED DOUBLE
THAT OF THAI PEOPLE.
MASON FOUND HIS TRUE LOVE HERE IN THE
ZOO. HE FELT SHE WOULD FIT RIGHT IN AT
HOME IN BAKERSFIELD,
MANY ALLIGATORS IN A PIT AT THE ZOO
MASON FOUND A LONG BAMBOO POLE
WITH WHICH TO PROD THE GATORS.
SEVENTEEN YEAR OLDS LOOK FOR FUN
WHEREVER IT  LURKS.
RESPONSIBLE ZOO KEEPERS ESTABLISHED THIS SCHOOL
FOR THEIR ALLIGATORS. AMERICAN ZOO'S COULD LEARN A
LESSON FROM THIS FACILITY.
ALLIGATORS FROM THE SCHOOL, HAVE
BEEN TAUGHT NOT TO BITE THE HEAD
OF THE TRAINER.
WHAT! A MAN EATING
ELEPHANT????
RIDING ON AN ANTIQUATED WOOD
DESTINATION ON THE LINE.
THIS PHOTO GROUP WILL COVER TRAVEL THAILAND IN THE COMPANY OF OUR DAUGHTER GABRIELLE, A GRANDSON JON AGE
15, AND FRIEND MASON  AGE 17, FROM BAKERSFIELD, CALIFORNIA. WE WERE PLEASANTLY SURPRISED AT THE VARIED
INTERESTS THE BOYS  SHOWED DURING THEIR NEW EXPERIENCES. AFTER ARRIVING IN BANGKOK, WE DECIDED TO USE
MIDLAND GEMS AND VR GEM CUTTERS HOME OFFICE  CONDO  AS A BASE FROM WHICH TO TRAVEL AND SAVE THE EXPENSE OF
A HOTEL.THE FIRST DAY, WE VISITED A BIG BOX STORE OPERATED BY THE FRENCH COMPANY CARREFOUR WHICH IS SIMILAR
TO COSTCO. THE BOYS IMMEDIATELY HOMED IN ON THE STARBUCKS STORE AND THE FOOD COURT FOR LUNCH. THEN BACK TO
THE CONDO TO RECUPERATE FROM JET LAG. TOTAL ELAPSED TIME FROM OUR HOME IN THOUSAND OAKS, CA TO OUR
BANGKOK CONDO IS 24 HOURS, YOU CAN IMAGINE JUST HOW DISTURBED THE BODY CLOCK COULD BE.  OUR LONG TIME
AIRLINE OF CHOICE IS EVA AIR BASED INN TAIPEI, TAIWAN. EVA AIR, IS A MUCH MORE  GENTLE AND CARING AIRLINE THAN  ANY
BASED IN THE US. OUR AIR TRAVEL STARTED AT LOS ANGELES, NONSTOP 14.5 HOURS TO TAIPEI, THEN ON TO BANGKOK AFTER
A PLEASANT ONE HOUR TRANSFER WAIT IN TAIPEI. AFTER HANGING AROUND BANGKOK A COUPLE DAYS WE TRAVELED BY
TRAIN TO KANCHANABURI, SITE OF THE FAMOUS BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI. IN KANCHANABURI, WE VISITED THE WW2
MEMORIAL CEMETARY WHERE PRISONER ALLIED SOLDIERS, WHO DIED BUILDING THE BRIDGE AND INFAMOUS DEATH RAILWAY
ARE INTERNED.  AFTER RETURNING TO BANGKOK WE TRAVELED TO THE SEASIDE RESORT TOWN OF PATTAYA, LOCATED ON
THE GULF OF THAILAND.  TOTAL TIME FOR THIS TRIP WAS 30 DAYS  AND INCLUDED MANY OTHER SOUTHEAST ASIA
DESTINATIONS. HOWEVER, DUE TO LIMITED WEBSITE SPACE, I WILL OUT OF NECESSITY, COVER ONLY A SMALL PORTION OF OUR
TRIP. ADDITIONAL TRAVELS WILL BE COVERED IN FOLLOW ON WEB TRAVEL PAGES. I MUST GIVE CREDIT FOR THESE PICTURES
TO MASON WHO MOST GENEROUSLY ALLOWED ME TO DOWNLOAD THE PHOTOS FROM HIS MEMORY CARD. WE THANK YOU FOR
YOUR INTEREST IN MIDLAND GEMS AND HOPE YOU ENJOY OUR ADVENTURES.
BOWL OF NOODLES ANYONE?
BEST NOODLES ARE TO BE EATEN
AT ROADSIDE NOODLE SHOPS.
SIDEWALK ARMAMENT SHOP
SWITCHBLADES, GAROTTS ETC.
"BRASS KNUCKLES ANYONE"?
JUNGLE BOAR PORK, NO REFRIDGERATION
ALL DAY AWAITING A BUYER. YUM, LET'S BBQ
NEMO FOUND!
RICKETY WOOD
FLOOR METRO BUS, 6
CENTS TO ANYWHERE
JON ALSO FOUND
LOVE BUT SHE WAS
TOO YOUNG.
DRIVE THROUGH SAUSAGE BUSINESS.
SOURED PORK AND RICE NOODLES, DUST
FROM STREET TRAFFIC,YUM.