<<prev| index | next>>
The Peninsula Bangkok

Here's my emailed report from the evening of December 26, 2004:

This morning Gloria woke me at 8:10 complaining that the door of our 15th floor room in the Peninsula Hotel Bangkok was rattling, the shuttered window was banging, and the decorative antique bell was swaying in its mount. I opened the door, shut it again, and everything stopped. Then there was a loud bang from the hallway.

More of my report below the picture

<<prev | index | next>>

We dressed, did our morning Pilates exercises, and went down to the breakfast buffet. Or we tried. It's a beautiful and exceptionally well run hotel, but the elevators don't come as quickly as we'd like. Presently elevator #2 stopped, and a technician on his knees said he was repairing it. A long wait and a mostly-full elevator #4 stopped; we got on; when it stopped again on the 14th floor I looked at the sign: capacity 20 persons, and started counting surreptitiously. After several stops more, with the count at 16, it descended non-stop. At the 2nd or 3d floor, a loud bang, but it continued to the first floor and thankfully the door opened. We were heading for the ground floor below, but made the instant decision to walk down the final floor.

Breakfast was normal and so was the return trip to our room. Under the door was a freshly printed notice that there'd been an earthquake some distance away, the building was earthquake resistant, and they were checking the elevators. Oh, we didn't dream the shaking! But what are those little white things on the carpet? Just, it seems, some plaster shaken loose at the joint between wall and ceiling.

We were fortunate to have left Phuket [two days before]; the news from there is not good at all, with extensive damage, divers lost, and people carrying their bags about, trying to find an undamaged hotel in a very full season. All this we know from the evening reports on BBC and CNN - we didn't turn on the box this morning.

So we're alive and undamaged, having survived our second earthquake in SE Asia.

These pages will work better if you hit the F11 key for "Full Screen."
Click on the picture to see the next one, or click Index to return to the index.
F11 again when you're done.