Ode to Bus 71

To get around Bangkok, there are options a’plenty,
Motorbikes, taxis, tuk-tuks and trains,
Vans, boats transport la gente,
(But some more than others can be real pains.)
But for danger, excitement and plenty of fun,
None can beat Bus 71!

Typical traffic in Bangkok, Thailand. (Photo by Bjorn Karlman)

Typical traffic in Bangkok, Thailand. (Photo by Bjorn Karlman)

In taxis, meter and pressure upward do tick
When in snarled traffic you helplessly sit,
Of taking advantage, drivers are quick
Driving ’round andΒ  ’round ’til you throw a fit.
For travel most cheaply and easily done,
Oh there is none like Bus 71!

Taxi drivers probably don't scam monks. (Photo by Bjorn Karlman)

Taxi drivers probably don’t scam monks. (Photo by Bjorn Karlman)

Motorbikes: scary,
Tuk-tuk routes: short,
And with their prices, one must be chary.
Use good sense — or as last resort.
Price variation on buses is done,
But none go too high on Bus 71!

A family rides a motorbike along the streets of Bangkok, Thailand. (Photo by Bjorn Karlman)

A family rides a motorbike along the streets of Bangkok, Thailand. (Photo by Bjorn Karlman)

Oh song-taews are speedy, and also quite cheap
With them, there’s no problem
—Except crowding. And frequent stops. And pollution. (Oh wait, there’s a heap).
Prices are fixed, so there’s no ruse; but open-air rides cause way too much phlegm.
Oh, the air is foul and black clouds cover the sun,
But soot is bearable in Bus 71!

Rush hours are very crowded on the BTS in Bangkok, Thailand.

Rush hours are very crowded on the BTS in Bangkok, Thailand. (Photo by Bjorn Karlman)

BTS, MRT — how I love thee!
Clean, quiet,Β  cool and gentle,
But during rush hours one can see
Faces mashed into ‘pits. It makes me quite mental.
Buses also can cram in a ton,
But none does it better than 71!

Bjorn floats along with two hats on his head in Ancient Siam. (Photo by Jammie Karlman)

Bjorn floats along with two hats on his head in Ancient Siam. (Photo by Jammie Karlman)

Vans are cramped, boats too specific.
Until legs can stretch free,
‘Til clean water’s prolific,
No I’ll never agree
That my heart can be won
By anything other than Bus 71!

The interior of one Bus 71 in Bangkok, Thailand. (Photo by Bjorn Karlman)

The interior of one Bus 71 in Bangkok, Thailand. (Photo by Bjorn Karlman)

True, 71 drivers speed with demonic glee
Stopping and starting most alarmingly
(But it’s the probable cause of their high frequency.)
Give that last kiss to baby or wife,
For people left standing hold on for dear life.
Away it barrels down the street,
Leading many to stumble on others’ feet.
After twisting and turning on overhead strap,
A ride without bruise deserves many a clap.
You’re like a pinata battered in the sun,
Oh, but really that’s all part of the fun
Of riding that great, that wonderful, that incomparable — Bus 71!

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9 thoughts on “Ode to Bus 71

  1. This was good fun to read. I didn’t know that I had such a good poet in the family and may recruit you to write another poem for some special family occasion in the future.

    • That would bring me a measure of pleasure and a memory to treasure! πŸ™‚

      … although after that little ditty, I wouldn’t blame you for reconsidering. πŸ˜€

  2. Glad you’re having so much fun,
    With the thrills of bus 71.
    Without a doubt, it’s a class of it’s own,
    Seems to the best way to get you home.

    Who really needs an amusement park?
    When you’re tumbling and flying around like you’re in a bullock cart.
    Sounds like half the adventure is the tumble.
    I hope one day onto this bus I’ll stumble.

    • Vishnu, you’re a poet…and I think you know it. πŸ˜€

      The 71 got even better tonight. We happened to board one that not only had a huge stereo system prominently displayed in the back, but also had blue lights and disco balls. Yes, seriously. I heart the 71 so much. πŸ˜€

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