A long day


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August 29th 2006
Published: August 29th 2006
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Well, I spent today traveling what should have been a 3 hour train ride in 7 hours. I'm really not sure what happened, but for some reason at one of the train stations our engine decided to leave the rest of the train behind. I never found out why. So I made it to Chumphon around 8pm, found a place to sleep, and dropped my stuff off before eating two meals in an hour's time. That made the headache go away.

I spent yesterday exploring the small city of Prachuap Khiri Khan, the capital city of the province of the same name. Few people bother to check the place out as tourists, but it was a cool stop for a few hours of exploration. I arrived the night previous from Bangkok, but didn't really explore too much that evening except to see what seemed like a community dance-aerobics class. Everyone was wearing their yellow "I love the King" shirts.

This morning I walked up to the wat they have on this oversized hill too small to call a mountain. There were monkeys all over the place, which was kind of cool. I've never seen monkeys in the wild before, although these were sort of city-dwelling monkeys, I guess.

I didn't really do too much else in Bangkok of interest while I was there. Although I did go to the medical museum where they had exhibits of all sorts of weird preserved body parts with random diseases, plus a forensic exhibit where they showed body parts that had been shot, stabbed, or damaged in car accidents, plus the fully preserved remains of a couple of executed rapist/murderers. Crazy stuff, actually. Later that same day I also went to snake farm, where they milk the snakes for their venom in order to make antivenin. They had quite a few cool snakes there.

I went out one night with Rachel and her neighbor Ashleigh to this club near Khao San Road (the backpacker capital of the world, it seems) but I think we were the only white people there - the rest were all Thai, which made for a fun and different evening. I also went out with those two and their Thai friends the next night to this abondoned Shell gas-station-turned-bar which was pretty cool.

Tomorrow I'll check out Chumphon, then head down to Chaiya for a day, before starting a 10-day meditation retreat where I will be completely cut off from the outside world and almost completely cut off from everyone around me, since we won't be allowed to speak. Theoretically kind of cool, but I imagine it will be a difficult experience. Check out this link for more info about the retreat.

Healthwise, physically, and mentally, I'm doing well. Hope that stays true.

Ben

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