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7 shots best 1 #3

Too soon for more saffron?

Having just determined with my last entry of The Best Of The Best 7 Shots that the best definition of what qualifies a photo as ‘best’ when it comes to travel photography is one which immediately transports you back to a time and place and stirs your memories of that trip, today’s photo may not appear to hit that mark. But that’s ‘cuz you weren’t there. I know that it appears to be just another one of my Monk Shot! offerings – albeit one of the better ones – but despite my having taken a few thousand photos of the men and boys in orange, I can immediately place this one. And it works on several levels.

I captured this image on the express boat headed up river to Wat Pho, a trip I’ve made more times than I can count. But on this trip rather than playing tour guide for newbies to Bangkok I was just with Noom. The Chao Phraya is fertile grounds for snapping pix of monks and Noom has become quite adept at pointing out potential victims to me. Not that he caught this one. Nor did he think much of the shot later when he was going through the day’s treasure trove of images on my computer. I had to move quickly between hearing him mutter, “delete,” and his finger hitting that button on the keyboard. Everyone’s a critic. And Noom considers himself to be a master at determining which photos are good and which need to be immediately trashed. The bastard.

Noom too goes into tour guide mode when we are accompanied by visitors; save for several time outs to carry on a lengthy conversation with the Buddhas we encounter that day, he usually doesn’t participate in the experience, preferring to stand guard and watch our charges enjoy themselves instead. So even though it wasn’t the plan, when we reached the back of the wat I convinced him to have a massage. It was his first real Thai massage sans a happy ending being involved. And I suddenly discovered what Dr. Frankenstein felt. Noom insists on getting a manage at Wat Pho anytime we go there now. Or anytime we are anywhere near the area. Or anytime we are nowhere near Wat Pho but still have an hour or two to kill.

Huh. Come to think of it, this should not be one of my favorite Bangkok photos.

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