Monday, October 20, 2008

BIG & BIH 2008

BIG & BIH fair is one of the absolute highlights on my Thai calendar (Bangkok International Gift Fair and Bangkok International Houseware Fair). I’ve no memory of how I discovered it, but I’ve only missed one since I’ve been here. It’s a huge expedition, held in April and October, showcasing Thai crafts and gifts for overseas buyers but for two days at the end it’s open to the public.

It is SERIOUS SHOPPING, not for the faint of heart. The first year I went, I must have been so marked out as an amateur … I took my handbag. Now, I take a shopping bag… on wheels. Oh you can laugh at the ‘old lady’ with her shopping trolley, but I’ll be laughing at the end of the day.

The exhibition area covers 46,000 sq m. There 750 companies in 1,900 booths and I HAVE TO SEE EVERYTHING. There appeared to be no recession on in Bangkok last Saturday and Sunday. There were four ATMs; two had run out of money and the other two had queues of 12 or more people. Based on last year’s figures, the organisers expected 103,000 visitors.

I don’t think I’ve ever seen the lot until this year. I think I’ve covered maybe half but I was determined this year to finish. I paced myself really well: regular pit stops, lots of water, and I finished about an hour from the end. Quite a few Christmas presents bought.

I told you it was serious shopping, so for those who’ve shopped seriously, there’s Thai massage: yes really.

I apologise for the quality of this picture, but how I wished I could’ve been wheeled out in a basket.


Carol and Chris said...

I popped in to see Marisa yesterday to thank her for looking after the splats and she told me it was guess who managed to go and do some shopping yesterday(I was very proud of myself!!)

Looking forward to catching up with you over lunch

C x

SueG said...

I must admit, this is my idea of hell. i go into sensory overload in places like that. Amazing to see it, though!!

Pat Posner said...

Like SueG, it's my idea of hell. I enjoy seeing those who enjoy it doing it, though, and I wouldn't have minded a massage.

hesitant scribe said...

Basket - the only way to travel!

Debs said...

I have to say that I would probably last about ten minutes with all those people and so much to see, although it would be my sister's idea of sheer heaven.

Glad you had a brilliant day.

Brunty said...

One of the few things I miss living in Isaan, the shopping but we do get our share of festivals.

I had a trolley when I was 30. I took it to the supermarket and loaded it up with groceries and then it went on my scooter with me.

They are really handy.

Lane said...

I admire your stamina jj. I think I would have fallen at the first massage table:-)

Jon M said...

Help! Shopping! NOOOOO! :-)

wordtryst said...

That's not serious shopping, it's extreme shopping. The mere thought makes me tired. You're a shopping athlete!

JJ said...

Carol, ooh, I don't think I'd've had the stamina for that the day after landing from the UK.

Sue, I luurve it. (but I'm not a big shopper normally - I save myself for this.)

Pat, I promised myself I'd have a massage, but by the time I'd run out of energy I just wanted to get home.

Lisa, you are so right.

Debs, I had a shaky moment at the start, where I thought 'oh my god, can I do this today?'

Brunty, welcome; trolleys (ies) are so fab, aren't they? Not funky maybe... although, the picture of the orange one is mine! and that's pretty funky. I got it free which is also wonderful.

Lane, i can only do it twice a year and it's so worth it. I just love it.

Jon, sorry, I should've put a warning here, shouldn't I?

Wordtryst, 'extreme shopping' I love it. I've never been extreme anything... LOL.