"Yes, Yes, Yes"

Trip Start Sep 03, 2004
Trip End Dec 22, 2004

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Flag of Thailand  ,
Thursday, November 25, 2004

Oh dear, we were quite disappointed with the tour we booked to go to Kanchanaburi for 3 days, 2 nights. When we booked it with a registered TAT office, the answer to all questions we asked was "Yes, yes, yes". And, when wer got to Kanchanaburi it was even worse!

"Is that really a picture of the real hotel we're staying in?" "Yes, yes, yes."

"Can you please give us some sort of itinerary so we know what we're doing for the next three days?" "Yes, yes, yes."

"Where are we going after the War Cemetery?" "Yes, yes, yes."

"When do we go to the hotel?" "Yes, yes, yes."

Oh, we were getting annoyed! It ended up being pretty ridiculous as we'd been told there would be an excellent English speaking guide to explain all about the River Kwai and everything we'd do on our trip, but the reality was more like:

"Here's the war cemetry" - PUSH!

"Go see the bridge, be back in half an hour" - SHOVE!

"Go to cave." - POINT!
There was even a big sign on the road which said "GO TO CAVE"!!!

We laughed so much, there was nothing else we could do, except scour the road for signs that gave us a clue as to where we were going. Then, the rooms, oh dear, when we complained, guess what the reply was......

"YES, YES, YES." Hopeless cases.

Anyway, enough complaining, we did actually have a good time in Kanchanaburi. The province was beautiful, mountains in the background, the River Kwai was so peaceful, very lush area with beautiful scenery everywhere and loads of gorgeous waterfalls. There was a lot of history about the area, but it was all a bit morbid, and we started to feel a bit down, so we decided not to concentrate on too much history, nad to only look at a few graves, some of the verses on the gravestones, though, made you cry. We saw it all, and even had time for a few beers, a few too many!

The highlights for us were visiting Tiger Temple, a monastery where monks rehabilitate and care for injured and orphaned tigers - that was great. They had a chain around their necks, just like a collar, not actually chained to anything, free to roam around!!! You were able to sit right beside them and get your photo taken, but had to be cautious to approach them by the side, to touch them to let them know of your presence and to NEVER turn your back on them - must admit, we were really scared! They're such gorgeous big creatures, and we wondered if maybe their cousin in Malaysia had looked at us from the bushes thinking how hungry it was :-)! There was a wee cub, too and of course it loved Andy and me who were the only ones who showed it some real attention and actually got the poor wee thing to move. It was playing with us for ages. There were loads of animals there, wild boars, strange goats, deer, peacocks, horses, but the other most exciting part was when Andy sneaked round the side of the cages where the mad enough leopard went even madder, jumped right up to the cage, about 5 inches from Andy's face, and it's all on camcorder! We did go a bit crazy, but because it jumped up, it's claws couldn't go through the cage as they were holding him up, still scary!

The second highlight was on our last day - a one hour elephant trek. There were about 7 elephants and we got to feed them bananas first, to sweeten them up. They're massive big creatures with massive... everythings! Our elephant was called Nula, although male. Andy and me and then a Brummie fella, Michael all got on it on a pretty rickety seat on its back. She was the most obedient and docile of the elephants
and didn't need to be whacked across the head with a big stick even once, unlike some other poor Nellies :-/. Although, I think we'd fed it too many bananas because it sounded like it dropped a couple of bags of "spuds" from its bum, and the smell will stay in our memories forever! It also liked to fart, a lot! It was a great experience and we're gonna do it again in Chiang Mai, where we're going next, so there'll be another wee update in a few days...

A & J xxx
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