Motorcycle diaries

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Flag of Thailand  ,
Monday, January 11, 2010

Over the past 2 days and 600kms later, I’ve been
deafened by the sound of wind blowing past my ears at 90 kilometers an hour via
atop of a rented motorbike from Chaing mai to May Soi where the Burmese and
Thai borders meet to the north. This was my “border run” and I decided to do it
myself instead of the traditional, 10 hour “minivan” trip. Because the roads
are so twisty and windy, the cramp packed vans can be a little closter phobic
and potentially make you sick, so I went solo and hit the road on my bike.

The drive was beautiful, it has a variety of mixed sceneries, everything from rice
growing in fields to corn, to lettuce, fruits and herbs. Then big tall trees
with vines growing on them, green bamboo trees and also with what looks like
popular trees, reminiscent of home. But then you realize this is Thailand when
you see palm trees with coconuts growing on them and pineapple trees and banana
trees, sometimes all mixed in together.

With less than 8 hours left on my 2 month Thai visa, I
exited Thailand by walking through some gates for about 25 meters, then turned
around and went back through the opposite, parallel gates. It seemed like the
natural thing to do with no signs as a guide. A guard had to stop and reverse
me as I passed the officer who takes your passport and gives you entrance back
into to Thailand. The Thai patrol nearly passed me along until he lastly
noticed on my passport that I never even entered Burma (Myamar). At this point
I’m thinking to myself, if I were that guard I would have me sat down and
questioned with my canvass, American eagle bag strapped across my shoulder
checked for drugs… which I did have inside, but they were just some antibiotics
and Tylenol pills. But no, they just tell me to go quickly with a hand gesture
and come back when I have my passport stamped from Burma. (I didn’t walk far
enough the first time). It didn’t take long, I fought off a couple of hundred
of Thai and Burmese people and made my way pasted them, gave my passport, paid
my $10 fee and returned within 15 minutes. With no talking and no smiles, I was
passed along entering Thailand once again, free for another 2 months or sooner,
which ever comes first.

Leaving the high hills of Pai 4 days ago, I am still
unsure where to go next, perhaps I’ll go back to Koh Lanta, my tan is starting
to fade now and I miss the beaches. If you think that this is not traveling,
you are right, but when ones budget is effectively as low as mine, I am content
to just relax, enjoy and meet interesting people from all over the world. After
all, it is beach therapy for me, and I’m fine with that. At least it’s not -30
outside and freezing cold.

With the wounds on my feet nearly healed, I’m feeling
much better now. For about 2 weeks there I just wasn’t feeling that great and
didn’t know why until found out it was the infection was making me ill (fevers/aches).
Add on a bout of the cold bug and was a little testing. I still can’t quite
wear runners yet, but then again, I may not need to if I go south to the seas.
One thing for sure is that I will be sure to take better care of my feet,
everywhere you turn, there are obstacles to hurtle!

Note the handle bars on the motorbike... look mom, no hands.

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J & E on

Hey Bud,
Sounds like you're still kickin' it (no pun intended :)
Sweet ride, and we'll never challenge you on spending more time at the beach. Just wanted to say hi and let you know we're following your journey. Erin is off to NS tomorrow and I follow in a week.
Safe travels,

troybabs on

i know you guys support my beach life haha... wish you were here, the kiting may not be al that bad too! Have fun in Nova Scotia and we'll chat soon!! cheers,


Vinny Boom on

Babies, that photo on the bike (no hands) is awesome!!!
You go the whole motion/blur image on the perifery and the bike in clear focus, showing that you are moving but the handle bars do not have any hands on them. That took some cohonies to get your camera out while riding and then to snap the photo with a curve in the road coming up. Great photo.

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