• Day 1: Pattaya to Kloeng

    Posted on June 6th, 2011 Jan No comments

    The guest house I stayed in in Pattaya turned out to be suffering heavily from the low tourist season…as a consequence, I had the 8 bed dorm room all to myself. Pattaya itself was as

    I didn’t start quite as early today as I had originally planned – instead of 6am, I didn’t get on the road again until almost 8am. It had been raining for a few hours already, and when I finally left, it was still pouring lightly. This turned out to be a very comforting situation, as the rain provided a welcome cooling during the first half of the trip.

    Here’s a first picture of Samnang in full gear, taken on the way to Klaeng:

    Samnang in Full Gear

    I had lunch on a market in Rayong. An elderly man came by to eat at the same table, and struck up a conversation which was only slightly hindered by the fact that our shared vocabulary consisted of only a handful of words. I always find it fascinating how much can be said without any words – he recommended me to wear a long-sleeve shirt to avoid getting burnt by the sun, and I explained that I was instead using sun screen…all by just using hands and feet.

    There was a very clear difference between how people reacted to me in Rayung as opposed to Bangkok and Pattaya – while most people where very friendly and helpful in all places, the people in Rayung where much more curious about what I was doing here.

    Shortly before Klaeng, a tree blocked the road – with the joint forces of the people arriving at the blockage, most of the tree was taken from the street in minutes:

    Timber!

  • Getting Ready to Cycle

    Posted on June 5th, 2011 Jan No comments

    After spending four nights in Bangkok mostly looking for a bike and also doing a bit of sightseeing, I went off to the bus station today to get to Pattaya. The way from the hostel to the bus terminal was about 20 km, and so I decided to go there by bike instead of trying to cram myself and the bike into the Skytrain and risk breaking my legs while carrying the bike up and down the stairs to the train platforms.

    I left the guest house later than planned because I had slept with earplugs and apparently overheard the alarm. As a result, I started the trip shortly after noon, and the streets where pretty crowded. The trip to the bus station reassured me that it had been a good idea to get out of Bangkok by bus instead of taking the bike…the stop and go traffic was really annoying, especially with the heat.

    Here’s a first picture of the bike which will take me through Southeast Asia…I named it Samnang, which means lucky in Khmer:

    Introducing Samnang

    And some pictures of Bangkok at night, taken from the top of the State Tower on Silom Road:

    Stream of FireScenic Dinner

    Tomorrow, I’ll get up early to get going for the first part of my trip…I’ll be going from Pattaya to Krat.

  • And so it begins…again

    Posted on June 1st, 2011 Jan No comments

    It’s been a while since the last update in this blog. That’s because I wasn’t in Cambodia for a while but instead back in Germany finishing my studies. Now I’m done with that however, and before starting to work, I decided to come back to Southeast Asia for a longer bike trip.

    The rough plan is to cycle from Pattaya via Pailin into Cambodia, down to Kep, into Vietnam, up to Hue and then back to Thailand via Laos…I’ve got 10 weeks for that in total.

    As I was a bit preoccupied in the last months with finishing my thesis, I did not spend a whole lot of time with planning the trip. Therefore, I decided the motto of this trip will be:

    Un Utterly Unprepared Undeavour Unto the Unknown.

    …by unknown I mean unknown to me and also at least partly to Google Maps (in the maps view).

    I am writing this first entry from Bangkok, where I just arrived a few hours ago and will begin looking for a bike to accompany me on my trip.

    More updates will be coming in over the next days.