Cycling in rural Thailand

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November 16th 2015
Published: November 16th 2015
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This is now about day 4 of cycling. It feels like I have been on the road much longer: I am getting into a nice routine and I could keep on going like this for quite a while.
After a pretty good night, even if I shared my room with numerous critters (cockroach, tiny ants, some kind of wasp and some weird white bugs-thank God I had my mosquito net with me), I left at dawn. It was very foggy and super quiet. The road I was traveling on was almost deserted, and the scenery fantastic. Too bad the pictures didn't turn out because of the fog and clouds, but this kept the morning cool. It gets incredibly hot around 11.
People in the most remote villages seem so surprised to see a foreigner, but most are greeting me with beautiful broad sincere smiles, and that gives me even more energy to pedal. Today there was no long hills but several short ones that forced me into granny gears.
I was dreaming about eating bananas and looked everywhere to find some. Either I saw them too late and didn't feel like turning around, or they were in the middle of a nice downhill... But finally I saw some. I tried to ask for 5 bananas, not the whole bunch. But they thought I wanted to pay 5 bhat. So I finally asked for half the bananas they had (which was about 12, but they are very small), thinking it would be easier to understand. Ah, they understood. But once I had paid (about 60 cents), they gave me all their bananas as a gift. Then they offered me water and a place to rest in the shade. Very touching.
What was a little less nice today were the dogs. Most did not care about me, but some chased me. I had heard that the best defense is to slow down or stop. Actually when I stop pedaling, they probably think I am a scooter... And they really don't care. I had only a couple that scared me a bit more, but I was either going too fast (down a nice hill) and the dog stopped or the owner managed to stop the dog. So in the end, it wasn't bad.
Then I arrived in Si Satchanalai. I dropped my stuff at a super nice guest house complete with hot shower and balcony overlooking the river. I then went for lunch and relaxed until 4. It was just too hot to go out. At 4 I biked to the historical park, about 2-3 km away. Really fascinating place. It used to be a city during the 13th to 15th century. The vibe in the beautiful park is quite something and I had the place almost to myself. Tomorrow I should be able to visit a similar site, but larger, in Sukhotai. Last day of cycling before I take the bus to the Bangkok urban jungle!

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Tot: 3.057s; Tpl: 0.054s; cc: 33; qc: 110; dbt: 0.0758s; 2; m:saturn w:www (; sld: 2; ; mem: 1.6mb