Back just in time for the monsoon!!

Trip Start Feb 28, 2012
Trip End Nov 22, 2012

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red snapper

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Saturday, May 26, 2012

Well, i am back covering old ground, back in old Sihanoukville, Cambodia on route to go up to Laos for a month....

Back in Saigon i finally found i couldnt take a motorbike across the border only to find when i arrive here a French guy called Tony who just drove here from saigon!! Note: Never listen to anything on Lonely Planet again...! 

But it may have been a blessing in disguise coming here to buy the bike because about an hour before the bus pulled in it started to rain and it ain't stopped since: welcome to the monsoon season.... i had never experienced it before and had no idea it just rained so much, so often and with little or no notice. So whilst here looking for a bike i started to think it would be very frustrating driving in this kind of weather; stopping, starting, putting waterproofs on, then off etc so i decided to look at all the places i was wanting to go and look at when there peak and monsoon seasons were and consider flying out somewhere and starting a new route. My previous plan was to bike down to Malaysia and that is pretty much the same destination. So from here i am gonna put off buying the motorbike and go to laos next week but via Bangkok, Thailand where the is better medical care and supplies (more later!). When you have been to Thailand once and you come back by a land border crossing you get a free 15 day visa in to the country which will save me $30 odd dollars too. I will arrive on 11th June am in Laos in time for the evenings highlight: England v france in the Euro's..! I'll miss the Spain v Italy game and Ireland Croatia but there's plenty of games to see..!

 So i will be in Vientianne, Loas for a month seeing my bro Jon and his wife Nicole who are there, watching some Euro games and travelling around from that base to explore some of the country either by Motorbike rental or by bus. Again it will be the monsoon but inland is not as bad as places like this on the coast. From there i will bypass the journey through Thailand and take a flight from Vientianne to Kuala Lumpar, Malaysia which costs about 60 quid through Air Asia.

The weather in Malaysia, Indonesia and Bali is good now so it makes sense to travel around there now and from there i can still choose any route either of the many islands around and on route down to New Zealand or Oz or i can take another flight back up probably to Hanoi in Vietnam where, in September/October it will not only be better weather but also approaching the high season with more travellers. I can then buy a motorbike cheaply and then do my initial idea of biking through vietnam, through Cambodia  and then through Thailand, then Laos and up in to China where they may not allow a Vietnam bike so may sell there but i am hoping that the few months of biking will have wetted my appetite enough. From there it will probably be the route i already had planned but now maybe including Mongolia which is above China.

So the good news is i have a plan! The bad news is there's been much eh ehin along the way.. eh eh is Cambodian for itching or scratching!! I dont know if i already mentioned this but back in Vietnam i woke up one morning itching all over and immediately thought the bed had bugs or something.

I always pick a clean room on a budget and have only been stuck once or twice when had to just stay somewhere but....and this is a big but, i stayed in one which looked fine and think i have picked up bed bugs..! Nightmare. I woke up itching all over - i am not 100% sure thats what it is but it sounds like it. If it is then i have read up on it and they sound very hard to get rid of. You have to wash and disinfect everything and just hope you get em all because it just takes one unhatched egg for the whole process to start again. The wierd thing is, they travel in your possessions, so on your bag, clothes and maybe some still on your skin but they only feed at night, by sucking your blood!! But once they're done they leave your body and find a hiding place close by, like the mattress or a crack or crevice nearby and are nocturnal and only feed at night so while you sleep they come and feed on you!! This sounds like what i have because i do mainly get it in the middle of the night which plays havoc with sleep patterns.... but you can apparently see these things, they are big enough to see, upto 5mm some of them and i never see any on me in the middle of the night and have searched all over the mattress and surrounding area and cant see anything and there are no tell tail signs of them; so its just the itching and fact its mainly at night but i am hopeful its something else and just treatable by tablets, like some skin issue... who kows.
Anyway, i went to see a doctor and took a Cambodian friend but the Doctor was Vietnamese with a Cambodian translator who spoke broken English so it was a 4 way conversation; me to my friend, friend to translator and translator to doctor and back again - talk about Chinese whispers, this was South East Asian whispers and in the end i am probably now getting treated for dementia or something like that?! 
So this is why i am going to Laos via Bangkok because the medication i have is for 5 days and if it doesn't work then i will see someone in Bangkok. I have also run out of some medications and you can get everything in BKK and pretty cheap too. Typing BKK just reminded me of a great t-shirt out here i have gotta get, its the Run DMC style t-shirt edited to Run BKK - Jamie - you would love this t-shirt and when i get back maybe ill hand it over, bed bugs and all..!!

So what else to tell you; you'll notice there's less and less photo's uploaded and maybe less tales and i think its because i am getting used to these crazy places and the crazy things that i still see everyday seem to just be expected now. 
I am continually picking up tips and what to do and not do and also streamlining my bag - i have now ditched the wash bucket i carry round and also bought a small travel kettle - genius - why didnt i think of this before?! I pay for cold water only rooms as they are cheaper and you only need hot water for a shave really but with the kettle i can have a shave, do some sinus clearing tiger balm in hot water head clearances and also boil my own eggs! As for me, i am happy, still enjoying the travels and apart from the stomach bugs an bed bug situation i am still feeling good. I am looking forward to seeing Jon and Nicole for a few weeks in Laos, catching some footy games and then onward to another new country. I am excited about the motorbiking still and glad i have it still planned in and from there China, Mongolia, Tibet, Nepal and India is the likely route and for me it doesn't get any better than that

The only thing thats on my mind is the possibility of coming back and when. Its mine and my mums birthday end of October then its xmas and new year but my route i have planned would take me past all that so its on my mind to see closer the time and not decide now as lots can change by then.

I hope you are all well and still getting the good weather over in the UK, better than here by the sounds of it! This blog was a bit more informational than interesting but thats down to falling behind on typing events up and so i forget a lot when i come to type but ill try do better i promise!!

Love to you all....XX 
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Delly on

Yo Yo Yo bro :)

well i gotta say i laughed ALOT when i saw your pic and notation with it about asking for beans on toast with 2 eggs hahaha, kidney beans on toast with strips of cheese and 2 hard boiled eggs in shells, fab!!! you ask and you get... very literal interpretation of your order :) the massive prawns with lime look absolutely divine... think i salivated at that pic haha!

so - bed bugs huh! spoke to mum about this - my friend kim got em and she had a mare getting rid of em! good luck ;) good luck with your venture onwards to Laos meeting Jon and Nic - say Hi from us :)

As for coming back - Mum will kill me for saying this but I would stay out there if you're on a roll. You've waited long enough for this time to travel and you seem so happy on your well earned adventure :) We will have many birthdays and many fab family times, this is your time out there and I back you a zillion % in following your heart and dreams. Mum is having the only party she's ever had given it's her 'big birthday' ... so you'll have years of making up to do when you do come back haha! My only hope is that when you do come back you come back to stay - I know I know selfish but I want my bro back eventually :)

Love and miss you and don't worry about less blogging - blog when you wanna blog, we always love hearing from you whenever and however often, just great that you check in with us all every now and then with your fab stories :)

Love youuuuuuuu, sis xxx
PS Sending you a BIG HUG xxxx

Carrie on

What a glorious banquet ...... not! You must have insides of iron now.

Yes lots of making up to mum to be done for missing her big birthday bash haha ........... but better you're back for Crimble so you can spoil me rotten with normal mince pies and normal turkey sarni's.

Love your blogs, Love you
Mum xxxx

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