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SOUTH EAST ASIA

 
  • Mekong Motorcycle Diaries Day 7

    Mekong Motorcycle Diaries Day 7

    Thailand. 17th November, 2012 Sunday in Sangkhom Overcast again at the rise, so I watched the long-tail boats coming and going, motoring across calm, misty waters, to and from Laos. There was more river traffic this morning, but whether it being Sunday had anything to do with that I didn’t know. I would ask Dtoy. Crossing for breakfast I encountered […]

     
     
  • Mekong Motorcycle Diaries Day 6

    Mekong Motorcycle Diaries Day 6

    16th November, 2012 Coffee (as usual), caves and curious lights: Cloudy morning dullness discouraged efforts to rise early, though I was still up by 7.30 for a hefty banana pancake and a pot of tea. Dtoy didn’t have any knowledge about the light I observed traversing the hills above Laos last night. It still wasn’t identified, so it remained a […]

     
     
  • Mekong Motorcycle Diaries Day 5

    Mekong Motorcycle Diaries Day 5

    15th November, 2012 Chiang Khan to Sangkhom (and first sightings of a UFO): Woke to Thai and Laotian roosters duelling across the Mekong; a croaking crow-fest that fell away in sputters like a slapstick comedy routine. Pim was nowhere to be seen yesterday – she had been in Leoi. She was downstairs now and chatty. She pointed at my bamboo […]

     
     
  • Songkran and the war against evil

    Songkran and the war against evil

    At 1400 hours Bangkok time, in the Buddhist year of 2559 (AD2016), I unwittingly found myself caught in crossfire during the crusade against calamity. Water was the ammunition of choice. There were skirmishes everywhere. None were spared. Samsen Road was lined with citizens in hand-to-hand combat, many camouflaged by white face paint. H2O ammo was launched wilfully in long spouts […]

     
     
  • Mekong Motorcycle Diaries Day 4

    Mekong Motorcycle Diaries Day 4

    Thailand. 14th November, 2012, Chiang Khan. After a night disturbed by revellers, a crying baby and crowing roosters became the wake-up call. In the early morning, a few Thai tourists were out and about in the main street cycling and taking photos, but there were no cafes open yet. “Free,” a woman on a bicycle said, pointing to a bunch […]

     
     
  • Mekong Motorcycle Diaries Day 3

    Mekong Motorcycle Diaries Day 3

    Sangkhom to Chiang Khan Thailand. 13th November, 2012 Spectacular riding, off-duty cops and chance encounters. Woke to more primrose skies. …And descended to a deserted reception. Perhaps everyone was sleeping off a hangover. No one emerged, so I left the keys on the counter, loaded the bike and throttled-off into the morning. I didn’t travel far, though – stopped at […]

     
     
  • Tak goes with the flow

    Tak goes with the flow

    Loy Krathong, the annual goodbye to bad karma, part religious ceremony/part festival, is held throughout Thailand in November. People in Chiang Mai ‘let go’ Khoom Loy, candle-fuelled wish lanterns, into the night sky; elsewhere, candle and flower arrangements are launched adrift on miniature rafts made from banana leaf; but in Tak the vessel of choice is a coconut shell, released […]

     
     
  • Plains, Strains & Automobiles – Crossing Mt Bromo

    Plains, Strains & Automobiles – Crossing Mt Bromo

    Accompanying my parry into Indonesia was the recently released edition of a guidebook that shall remain nameless, but I suspect all that had been updated was the publishing year – 1985. Though, I hadn’t concluded complete unreliability when reading about Mt Bromo, in Java. Other than seeing the volcano, apparently you could walk eight kilometres across the ancient Tengger caldera to the […]

     
     
  • Instant Nirvana at Tam Wua

    Instant Nirvana at Tam Wua

    Tam Wua monastery sits at the end of a narrow valley beneath mountainous limestone karsts in far north-west Thailand, near the Myanmar border between Pai and Mae Hon Song on the long and winding road from Chiang Mai. I stepped into Tam Wua for a mindfulness side-trip while touring the Mae Hon Song loop on a Honda step-through scoot. Apparently, […]

     
     
  • Spinksy’s Top Five Chiang Mai Tips

    Spinksy’s Top Five Chiang Mai Tips

    Chiang Mai, Thailand’s capital city of the North, offers a vast array of options for travellers. Somewhat ironical title aside, here are a few things I discovered during a recent visit, which was mostly spent at the east side of the old city. Haven’t covered tourist attractions (there’s enough info about them) – in my opinion Chiang Mai’s main appeal […]

     
     
 
 

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