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Faces in Places Traveling as the Uni of Life

It's just a ride

THAILAND | Friday, 1 February 2008 | Views [838] | Comments [1]

Every morning 6:30: People offer food to the monks in Luang Prabang.

Every morning 6:30: People offer food to the monks in Luang Prabang.

Hi y'all! I'm currently in Bangkok and to be honest, the place gives me the creeps. Let me start though, with where I was at the end of my last blog entry; Luang Prabang.

Luang Prabang kept me in its charm for a few more days then planned. Making up for a total of 8 days. I really like it there; city convenience combined with a laid-back and inspiring atmosphere. Together with Rachal, Rob and Jane, all artifarti's in film, music and/or performance, I just basically chilled out in temples and parks, making music and talking about ideas. When it was time to move on, we all went into a different wind direction, mine being the west. I was heading for the land of Thai.

I decided that I wanted to visit Chiang Mai in the north, before I would go down to Bangkok. This place sounded to me as a good transition between the relaxed vibe of Luang Prabang and the proclaimed wild 24 hour buzz of Bangkok. My transportation of choice; the slow boat over the Mekong.

It took me two days on the boat, while the engine was fighting to go upstream in the strong swirling body of water. There were some nice people on the boat, which made it easy to kill the 16+ hours. I even managed to finish a song for the first time! :) It's about children in S.E. Asia, always eager to play my guitar. After two nights in small towns along the river, I finally arrived in the morning at the border crossing with Thailand. Here I got into a mini-bus that brought me in five hours straight to Chiang Mai.

During the bus ride I started chatting with some fellow's from the US and I ended up spending my time with them in Chiang Mai. We arrived on a Sunday, which mend that in the evening the weekly night market would take place. Although Chiang Mai is definitely a few gears down compared to Bangkok, I still was in shock when I saw the amount of white noses in the old city center. And although on holiday, somehow they all seemed to be in a hurry.. which reminded me of the place I left 5 months ago.

Surprisingly, the night market turned out to be really nice. There was a lot of creativity around, which hypes of street musicians and artists. I was carrying my guitar on my back and was therefore able to join some groups, which ended up in really nice jam sessions. On the market I also bought my last souvenirs before I would send it back home from Bangedy Kok.

After two days in Chiang Mai I left in the evening with the train to Bangkok. During this train ride I was eventually forced to wake up from my dream that S.E. Asia had been for me the last months and I had to return in the world that is called developed. A big group of developed people held a party in the cafe wagon, singing loudly on such great musicians as Frans Bauer and Kabaouter Plop, while the tired looking personal clapped their hands and kept their trademarked Thai smile in the right shape. Conversation with phrases like 'Yes, Thailand is great, but the people are sooo poor, sometimes they don't even have a television!' or 'The restaurants are not as good as people said to me they would, it is almost impossible to find a steak or spare ribs!' made me want to scream, but instead I laughed about it with two girls from Holland, who I met earlier in my cabin..

Bangkok is even worse for me. It costs me a lot of energy to maintain the 'no problem' and 'everything is beautiful' vibe that grew on me while traveling Asia. On the main streets, that smell and look like 'de koopgoot' in Rotterdam, you can buy instant dreadlocks or have some random tattoo set on your arm. ..Let the penis measuring begin!

Anyway. Pull my finger!! :)

I just booked a flight to the Philippines for tomorrow. After landing in Manila early morning of the 3rd, I will stay there one day before I board another plane on the 4th to Puerto Princesa on Palawan Island; the place of underground rivers and secluded islands, which inspired Alex Garland to write the novel 'the Beach'.

It's all just a ride, thanks Bill >>>>

Tags: Culture

Comments

1

Hey Daan!

Hoe is het in de filipijnen nu? Ik dacht dat je pas eind februari daarheen zou gaan. Jammer dat we elkaar dan net gemist hebben in Bangkok, maar kan goed begrijpen dat je zo snel mogelijk wegwilde ;)

Liefs Rosanne

  Rosanne Feb 13, 2008 4:21 AM

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