Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Minight train to Chiang Mai and dogs in nappies

Quite a lot has happened since the last post. We spent Sunday in Kanchanaburi exploring mainly the river and the bridge. We started to wander over the railway track on the bridge only to discover after a few feet that this was a hair raising thing to do if you're queasy with heights. There were lots of people pushing past and not enough ground to step aside on. The ease with which one could slip through the sleepers or off the edge was chilling from the toes up! We decided instead to take the little train (15 min ride) over and that was scary enough but well worth it. We were in cart with a bunch of Thai tourists. About half way across one of them bowed to me in their way and asked whether he could photograph his friend with me!! Well much bemused I agreed (you gotta be good to your fans right)Next thing they all took it on themselves to take turns posing next to me and Simon and some were videoing the whole photo shoot on their phones. Maybe they thought we were original PoWs returning to the site but I secretly suspect they thought we were Brad and Angelina (Easy mistake!)

The crazy mad things you see almost daily continue.. a dog wearing a nappy anyone!

We visited the Allied Forces cemetry and were both very moved. Just so many men and so young. The inscriptions were heartbreaking and many refered to the distance from where the men lay to home.

Later we ate at a floating restuarant with incredible views of sunsetting over the Kwai.

Monday we set off fromn the guest house in a motor bike taxi (a bike with a side car which is sort of like a mini flat bed on a truck with a bench around and an umbrella roof.) We took a local non air con non comfy bus 2 hours to Suphanburi and then another to Ayutthaya in order to meet the over night train to Chiang Mai. It was a long day but we both really enjoy thetravelling bits.

Taking the night train was a real excitement (to begin with) Everyone milling around the station buying essentials before boarding from track level. We dined in the catering car- very cool (proper Thai food and beer witht the sounds of a Thai Abba singing Mama Mia blasting from a sound box under someone's seat) When we returned our beds had been made up and all along the carriange people were behind blue curtains snoring. Simon had the bottom bunk...which was 5 star luxury with reading light, wide of a single bed, window and comfy mattress. Meanwhile I had a bed on the luggage rack... mmmmm!! What a dreadful night. Eventually I took advantage of Simon being asleep and snuck in head tyo tow with him for the last hour. We were woken at 6.00am and had 20mins before breakfast of ham and eggs to just gaze in wonder as the view from the window of sun rising slowly of miles of hilly jungle.

CM is lovely and much more relaxed than BK. It is Wat-tastic (Wats are buddhist temples) We spent yesterday exploring but trying our best to not over do it as we were both tiired from the overnight. There's loads to do and see from CM (everywhere are places offering hill tribe trekking, jungle trekking, elephant mahout training etc) Last night we had an amazing meal and a few drinks in a bar run by a really cool ex-pat guy. I slept like a dream all night which was most welcome but Simon unfortunately is in a pretty bad way with D & V. He has had dodgy tummy for about 5 days but last night he was really bad and didn't get much sleep. I've come out for brekkie and having persuaded him not to eat anything fo0d at least today and only have Diarrolite and water intend to take him a newspaper back and plenty of water.

Today is the Queen's birthday in Thailand it is a national holiday and drinking alcohol is forbidden (by them anyway) Every place we've been to thus far has huge portraits of Her Majesty and the King and clearly there will be celebrations later. Maybe we'll go out and see what's happening later if Simon is better.

We hope to go to CM Zoo tomorrow - a baby panda was born there a few months back so I need to go and get a picture for Debs right!

Anyway this is a little bit flat but that is because it is extremely hot and the key board (as seems to be the national custom) has broken keys which don't depress properly making typing arduous. We are both in great spirits and loving the country. Can't believe we've only arrived a week ago. Anyway I have laundry to collect from Mr Cleen's and water and diarrolite to return to the sick room.

Love to all

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