Thursday, January 19, 2006

In the North Country

After I sent out my last post, we walked out to our van and it wouldn’t start. So we hitched a ride back to the hotel and our driver went to an all night garage where he found that he had a bad fuel pump. Whew, almost stranded in the City of Heaven (that’s what the name translates into).

Got up the next morning and headed north towards the Burma/Laos boarder. I made a friend Heather dubbed Tangerine, a orange kitty begging for food at a gas station (yes there are pictures but I’m limited on bandwidth). Stayed the night in a small town called the Golden Triangle (Chang Sae). We rented two cabins for 600 baht (15 bucks) at a place called the Golden Home, clean rooms and hot water. Breakfast was included in the price where Heather inherited a follower, Smokey the dog. She gave him a hot dog and they were friends for life.

There’s a giant Buddha next to the river (pictures of that too) we rented a boat for the morning to take us on a cruise up the river and shopping in Laos. Good prices, I scored a bottle of whisky with a cobra in it for a 100 baht and some silk rugs which will look very nice in my home. We’re limited on what we can bring back, Ivory opium pipes would be bad buy there was some nice chess sets carved out of bone but I was limited on room. Heather got souvenirs which I can’t tell about here because she want them to be a surprise, if you know her, expect some postcards!

Then it was back down the river and we hit the road once more.

The area we’re in is fairly mountainous, lots of curvy roads make it difficult to hold the laptop on the lap, my wife is complaining that she can’t write postcards (she’s one of those postcard sending people). It’s also much cooler then southern Thailand, we wore long sleeves this morning, amazing area.

I don’t think I’ve ever spent this much time driving, our driver Moo would do very well on a race track, he’s a very sneaky sly driver, cutting in front of lines of traffic, passing around curves, all sorts of bad things that would give you tickets or killed in the states. Gets us around quick though. Heather says it’s like we’re on an episode of Globe Trekker. Well hopefully I can find a place to upload this when we get to our next stop.

I have to agree with my roommate James, cell phone service in the US blows, Thailand is almost, not quite a third world country and I have yet to find a dead spot, even in the middle of the mountains, miles away from humans, service is as clear as day. And it’s cheap, 10 cents a minute to call back to the states. It seems like the American people are getting hosed on there service. Japan has wireless broadband and their video phones cost half the price as our crappy camera phones.

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