Duration: 5 months
Well after a few months of some excellent riding, finding amazing riding buddies in Chris, Andres and briefly Thomas & Manuela, meeting some amazing people along the way, I decided to hang up the saddle for a short while. Kind of a forced breather of sorts. I am headed home, which is a bit far from the concept of home, to be honest. My home actually takes up 24 sqft, packs into a cubic foot, travels with me and contains the whole wide world.
Well I am going to a home in the normal sense anyway.
After reaching Vientiane, we headed to Jo’s, an amazing host and friend. Time flies in good company and Vientiane is a nice town to be taking a pit stop. The days were spent playing with the 3 little doggies, stuffing my face with food, interesting conversations and learning a thing or two about making some delicious stuff.
Jo taught me to bake a cake, from the basics and shared a variety of tips on making improv. I ain’t going to bake cakes soon, but chocolate truffles, I am going to make a bunch and eat them too 🙂 And to top all that, I even got Laos stamped on my burgeoning body art collection.
After the nice break in Vientiane, after the hectic ride in south Laos, I headed out on my bike, a last border crossing into Nong Khai, Thailand. It was a painless process as it has been all along and I rode into the railway station to catch a over mightier to Bangkok. The third class tickets were cheap and the train was far from crowded. So I managed to get a bit of shut eye.
Got into BKK in the wee hours and I decided to hang out at the mile map hostel mooching on the wifi and waiting for my cycling buddy, Steve. When Steve dis show up at noon, we swapped stories and I waited till sometime in the evening to head to a bike shop for a box. Pro bike was the place we headed to and though they quoted 100 bhat over the phone, when I got there, they just let me help myself to one of the boxes and provided tape and tools to finish the packing. This is the first time pumpkin is getting boxed and Steve gave some good advice on the packing.
I had picked the biggest box in the pile and it stood at 6ft long. I figured it’d be a bit of a hassle finding a cab willing to take it and I wasn’t surprised when I stood on the streets for nearly 3 hours with no cab able to fit the sucker in. My best bet was a maxi cab and the fellers were quoting me ridiculous rates. I decided to stick around even if took all night long. A few of the locals tried to help me here. One lady walked to the other side of the road and tried to way lay the maxi cabs and at one point, a cabbie drove around to look for one. It was all without fruit though.
At 9:30 or so, one of the guys grabbing a drink came by and asked me where I was going. He said he lived near the airport and decided to give me a lift on his truck. Awesome!
It’s going to be a night at the airport and I’d prefer hanging out here next to the flight rather than have a half hearted sleep in a hostel and risk road closures. Bangkok has been heating up a bit with protests in the past few days.
Well bike in box, bags packed, ticket in hand, I am headed back to the cozy confines of the brick and concrete apartment. The road beckons, but this break is more than just taking rest. Wait up, unexplored roads, I will be right back!