So flying into Thailand was something I didnt really want to do. But from India and Nepal, these days there is no way out unless you fly or you sail. The great dream for overlander's these days lays only as a dream . To all ye old hippies who did it in the past, I hope you enjoyed every bit of it while it lasted. On the positive note though, I flew from Kathmandu into Bangkok. It was actually a good feeling to get into the subtropical zone of the globe. Kao Sok Road is something to really be missed as well, but if you like drinking beer and getting some young Asian gals or if you prefer "ladyboys'', this is your place. I spent 2 days here, I stayed at a cool little guest house called the Apple, quite nice and some great travelers here too. I then headed south on the overnight train to Chaiya, (the Thai's only recognise this town if you call it Ahhh, Chaiyaaaaaa) with some Austrian friends I made, we drank beer and drew pictures and hung our body's out of the windows in the moonlight of the 3rd class carriage where there were only a couple of locals riding in our carriage. 3rd class tickets are cheapest and best, you can even take the seat off of the chair and lay it on the floor across the aisle way if you fancy a comfortable sleep.
So the story goes, I was headed to Chaiya to give a 10 day meditation retreat a go, they call it Vipassana. 10 days of learning and practicing meditation with no speaking, 2 meals a day, a natural hotspring and a bamboo mat and a wooden pillow to sleep on. Wow what an experience this was, on so many levels im so happy to have sustained to 10 days and experience what I did experience. At the end of the 10 days, as hard as it was at times, I even got up at the talking circle on the last night and spoke to everyone of my story and experiences. Ive never felt this kind of happiness within my self before, along with mindfulness, trueness and overall wholesomeness and well-being. It was a great experience and Ill be sure to support and talk to anyone who is remotely interested in doing such a thing. Its a great insight into Buddhism too.
After we were all allowed to speak on the 11th day, I had no idea what I wanted to do, where I wanted to go. On the main road waited people from the retreat to catch the bus further south to Krabi, the majority, 6 or 7 of them were keen for a cool place to chill, maybe party a wee bit and hav good times. I thought I wanted to go North and experience the trip of the Mekong River, but I learnt so much about life and its impermance on the meditation, that when the bus stopped on the highway I jumped on and headed south. This was quite a difficult thing for me, I felt so stranded, it was as if my compass kept spinning around in circles on the map, but I knew I was in great hands. So the next couple of days on Railegh beach and Tonsai were some of the best chilling days Ive had for .... well probably since Nepal or in Shrinigar on the Houseboat.
6 days of greatness, with Sanne (Sunearth) , Dev (Old man river) , Melody (Creative goose) , Ti Shan (Friend Chinese), Ersin (Crazy Turkey) and David the Dreaded monkey, all we pretty much did was go for swims, go for a trek, eat, chat, eat again and by 2 pm we'd meet on the beach have a great picnic, play guitar, the melodica, sing, draw, chat, do some bouldering and climbing, maybe go for a swim again and keep the chai tea brewing consistently. Ahh the good days!!!!!
Well they did continue, as everyone parted and went their separate ways, Sanne and I decided to join forces. Completely spontaneously we had some Ideas and well, the bus was expensive so we hired a scooter, saddled up with my Afghani donkey sack, got the tent and the cooker and hit the road. Wow it was an awesome adventure, and a camping vibe ive never hit before. Camping in and under dwellings, the best one was in a buddist temple which was inside a cave. The monk told us to sleep there, so we did, we also slept under the roofs of places like a reggae bar and the huts in the palm oil plantations. The good times.
We then headed to Malaysia, to Georgetown, Penang. Where coincidentally we timed it right to meet up agin with Dev and Melody, hiring scooters again and exploring the realms of the national parks and sites and ohh the most amazing sunsets. Then (Im cutting it really short now) to Kuala Lumpa and staying at La Village, its like an old squat, some amazing travelers and a working creative hub for people on the move. Sanne and I sadly then went our separate ways, Sanne to go to the North of India and myself to Borneo.
Sorry for not writing and catching up on the blog for my reader, im a slack ass for sure on this thing, but when you travel and live so much in the present you tend to stay away from places with the tinternet.
Much Love and when I return home one day, ill do something a little bit better, maybe even write a song or two and or post up some drawings..... just wait how about re reading and then translating my bad writing into English.
Much happiness to you all.