Dateline: Bangkok, Thailand
It even smelled like gold to me (if gold can exude an aroma.)
At least, I SAW gold and substantiate the fact with my attached photos below. Now I’m not saying it was the pure 24-carat variety. It only appeared that way to me at the time and it certainly looked authentic in my viewfinder. Even the sun’s reflections lent validation. My job as a travel photographer is to make gold look like gold if it gets anywhere close to resembling the real thing. With a little maneuvering in Photoshop after the fact, I can make just about anything look golden if the subject matter has but just a tinge of red or yellow in its color cast. I can even add a slight hint of a–blurred atmospheric golden glow–as I did on the photos below though almost unrecognizably.
But that’s another story.
I’m in Thailand, one of the world’s most touristed destinations. Land of the The King and I. (Well, I’m here but he has no idea.) So I decided I must visit his Grand Palace even though he is rarely in residence. Me and about ten million other vacationers are here today to experience Bangkok’s number one attraction. OF COURSE, the king isn’t here. Kings don’t do traffic jams.
There are only two ways to circumnavigate a golden chedi.
I decided to traipse around in a clockwise direction, the more kosher route. My challenge is always to avoid capturing an unannounced elbow or tourist hat or backpack or point-and-shoot camera in the corner of the frame as I document these exquisite golden wonders for posterity. Hey, maybe I should specialize in shooting victory signs since that seems to be what most tourists hold up with two fingers in virtually all their self-indulged photos while I’m waiting in patience exasperatingly. Well . . . I’m a bit self-indulgent myself. You wouldn’t believe how many sunburned hours I spend every day just to snap a quick moment between tourists. I should buy a huge, over-shadowing hat for ultraviolet protection . . . or maybe I should have brought a ravenous pet Komodo dragon from Indonesia, tied on a leash, just to garner a bit of space.
Now, I’m not knocking tourism.
I caught myself . . . without tourists my job wouldn’t exist.
And that’s when I really started to see the king’s golden treasures.
See these books to learn more about the magic of Bangkok.