After leaving the dramatic spectacular scenery in the north of Thailand and along the Thai Myanmar boarder I started heading south and spent the night in Kanchanaburi on the river Kwai. I was in this, then sleepy little, town about 8 years ago and my goodness what a change. I remember staying in the nicest rustic guesthouse with a wooden balcony almost exactly the same as the one I stayed when I was in Chiang Khan. Well there are no such little places along the river now. Many being replaced by fancy hotels and resorts. Fortunately there are still some lovely small bungalows and guest houses, but they are stacked one alongside the other all along the river. The tiny town, hmm village is now a fair sized town and has everything the usual tourist desires in Thailand including McDonalds, Tesco’s, boots etc. Well I guess this is what they call progress. But I miss the village feeling and the dust from the dirt roads, and the peace and tranquillity.
The roads down south are in some respects great, long large concrete dual carriageways, but the traffic is heavier and again I miss the countryside and feeling like I am in the middle of nowhere, here it seems that I pass a town every 100km and a 7/11 or Tesco’s lotus every 50km. In fact these roads really reminds me of Florida, they are the same with a plethora of fast food places 7/11s, MacDonald’s, KFC, Amway, macro, Tesco’s and a host of local shops. So it’s kind of Florida Thai style, but not my style. But don’t get me worn git would be totally hypocritical of me to give you the wrong idea since I love Tesco’s Lotus since I discovered their banana bread and now have a stash in my luggage at all times, for those moments when I need a snack or am staying at a guesthouse that does not serve breakfast or only serves Thai breakfast (sorry I just cannot do rice or soup so early in the morning). I do however still enjoy the ride and the funny things I see along the way in the traffic, like the truck driver reading a book…I kid you not he was not reading a map but an actual book, and I thought speaking on ones mobile was bad.
I do notice that the temperate this far south is decidedly warmer, what an understatement I mean HOT HOT HOT, the only way I can really keep cool is to soak my t-shirt in the morning and zip my jacket up. I then periodically douse myself in cold water. When I am moving this is great soaking wet clothes and cool breeze, heaven. It’s ‘when I dry out and get stuck at traffic lights in the towns that I start to fry. Since Dozer is air cooled I am definitely noticing his heating up and am keep a close eye on things since my temperature gage is broken …déjà vois 🙂