Happy Birthday little Sis! and Caves...

Trip Start Jan 31, 2011
Trip End Dec 15, 2011

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Where I stayed
Sunrise Guesthouse

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Thursday, August 4, 2011

09:04 Today is my little sisters 30th birthday. Not so little anymore, 30 and married, I'd never really imagined this growing up. So Happy Birthday little sis, I'm sorry I couldn't join you for your big three-oh especially as we had such fun at mine. Love you loads!

This morning me and Angela were able to get up more leisurely, which in Angelas case was 8am as she doesn't seem to be able to sleep in, and with bouncy wooden floors in the bungalow, any movement means that no one else can either! Still, we have nothing particular to do today, so at least there is no rush to do anything.

We decided that we would go and see some nearby caves called Tham Pha Thok that the locals used to hide from the heinous bombing that went on here. We walked for 2.5km down the road and found the sign to the caves, walked down the little track and came face to face with a stream. Quite a large one. As we stood there wondering if someone had misplaced the bridge, the lady there pointed out how we could hitch our trousers up and wade across. With a a belt full of expensive camera, iphone, headtorch and all my money, I was dubious as I certainly wouldn't want to fall over in the pretty fast flowing, large stream. 

We pondered some minutes before I stepped down onto the riverbank then attempted to walk across some fairly solid looking mud. The mud was not solid and my left leg disappeared into think goopy mud up to my left knee, which was a hell of a surprise! I managed to evade the suction on my foot and extract my leg, and my favorite Innov8 Roclite boot (one of these! I love these boots! http://www.outdoorsmagic.com/product-reviews/inov8-roclite-390-gtx---first-look/4888.html) from the thick mud, bringing up a lot of mud with it. There was nothing for it, this boot needed cleaning now, so I may as well just wade across the river socks and boots still on. I cleaned my leg a bit and then took the small boy's hand who guided me across the river and also was hopefully going to stop me falling over in the current! I waded over and got out the other side, took off my boots and poured a cup full of water out of each one. I managed to convince Angela to come over as well, but as she hadn't also had a muddy accident she took her shoes off and came across barefoot

We walked across a paddy field and found some concrete steps up to the cave, they were very steep and not for large footed people that's for sure. Up in the cave, led by the 3 small children, the cave was huge, really really huge. I managed a couple of snaps with my high sensitivity mode on which I hope shows how big they are. There was also an area, including table and chair, for the governor, and graffiti on the wall of a dragon, tiger and some horses. I really was surprised at how big it was.

After the cave, it was back across the river to collect another 2 bootfuls of water then squelch back to the town. As we neared the town it poured with rain and I got soaked to the skin, it has been a very humid day so I was already quite damp. Still, my clothes needed a wash so on getting back to the bungalow I was into the shower with all my clothes and shoes on to wash them down. 

We went over to a restaurant which has wifi and finally, after itching all morning to call my little sis, I managed to call her and have a quick word, before getting up to date here. 
The sun came out so we had a little walk and returned for dinner of green curry, which was quite spicy, but lovely and only just finished eating a few minutes ago!
With my updates, up to date, I can disappear again to an even more rural village for a night, where they may not even have electricity!

Best: the caves
Worst: initially a bit miffed at losing my leg into the mud and therefore having to make my feet wet
Beautiful: the view up the river between the hills
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Mark Knights (of Sage) on

Forgot all about your blog, so rather than working today I have been reading up on your exploits! Mate of mine has just been made redundant so he's planning on following in your footsteps across Siberia - reminded me to look up your travelog. Some great stories so far, going to get up to date with your travels then subscribe to the updates.

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