Posted in Cambodia

Via Sisophon into the east direction


The next major goal is the city of Siem Reap, where I have planned a break for a few days. The country initially offers little variety and little shade along the busy national road 5. During the day it is hotter in Cambodia than in Thailand, although the thermometer does not show more than there. At least that’s how I feel. The air humidity is obviously lower, but it cools down even more at night. The NR 5 leads straight ahead to the east. At a traffic circle about 7 km outside of Poipet, we can buy juice again in the shop of a modern gas station. This can be used to spice up the otherwise very tasteless water on the go.

Later there will only be simple stalls along the street, which also offer everything, but water is usually only in small bottles and fruit juice is not to be seen there. There is no comfortable hard shoulder on the side of the road, as on so many roads in Thailand, or at least the marking has long since disappeared. So always keep to the right and watch out for obstacles, because someone likes to stop at the edge. Otherwise, the horn is obviously an important means of communication in this country.

Apart from the heat, which I have to deal with, light wind presses against the driving comfort from the front. So we alternate with giving slipstream from time to time, which definitely does help something. For a few kilometers, I even hang behind one of the small cargo trailers with a single-axle tractor that has loaded sugar cane and is traveling at almost 18 km / h, Maik behind me. On top of the stack of sugar cane, a woman in work clothes with a sun hat is stretching out, dozing there.
For a short while, this is a bit slower progress, but a rather relaxed driving. The faster vehicles coming from behind also automatically pass us at a sufficient distance. Unfortunately the driver stops at an intersection in the next village and we have to deal with the slight headwind again.


I don’t see restaurants on the street that often anymore, and when I see a canopy with tables and chairs underneath the street in Nimitt, about halfway to Sisophon, we stop there and after a short question the boss also makes us a nice portion of fried rice with some vegetables and shrimp.

Shortly before the center of Sisophon, a brand new archway built in sandstone points to a Buddhist temple located behind it. I have never seen such an archway made of sandstone in Thailand or here in Cambodia, mostly it is simply bricked, modeled and decorated with cement, and then colored with a lot of bright color. This one seems to be an exception. The other temple buildings do not have sandstone decorations themselves. From the area of the temple, individual people come on their mopeds through the archway. A friendly gentleman explains to us that it would be no problem to visit the plant. However, it is not particularly spectacular, except that all the buildings still look new.

The next day we stop in the Rohal area at another temple, which is about 500m off the highway and on the edge of a village. This too was only renovated a few years ago and a blackboard explains in which years how much donations and from which countries were used. The area of the temple looks tidy, in a larger pond you can see some lotus plants in bloom and in some corners there are even trash cans. Should this be used to counter the waste problem that is otherwise visible everywhere?

Already in Poipet there was a lot of rubbish along the streets, and the further away from the main street the worse. Along the trunk road, which is built on a high embankment, the rubbish lies along the embankment or below it in the ditch. There it is apparently burned together with the dry grass from time to time. Traces of it can be seen clearly. Burning dry grass or crop residues in fields is a daily practice in this country. And there is always fly ash in the air, which presumably comes from fires that are placed in fields far away from the road in a controlled manner for the removal of crop residues. In the distance at least one or the other column of smoke can be seen and small flakes of ash collect again and again in the sweat on my arms.


This continues in the settlements along the street, where sometimes open containers made from old car tires also serve as collection points. Often, however, the garbage lies around it. There does not seem to be an awareness of the dirt or avoiding it. It’s pretty sad to see.

Kralanh is a much smaller city, more of a small town with a large intersection and a market that stretches across several narrow streets near this intersection. There is also a large school there.
In the evening it is not so easy to find something edible. Some small street restaurants close in the late afternoon, when the market also comes to rest.

After some looking around and asking for food, we get stuck at the table of an inconspicuous food stall, which already offers pre-cooked stew with rice, plus canned beer from the slowly thawing refrigerator. The next ice delivery will not be replenished until tomorrow morning.

In the early morning I wake up to the song of a muezzin calling for prayer long before sunrise. With the sunrise he calls again later. I hadn’t noticed that in the evening, but it was probably because of the street noise in front of the restaurant where we had been sitting for a while.
Even before sunset, the air was slightly hazy from the smoke that is suddenly everywhere. Somewhere someone is lighting the swept up garbage in front of their house, or heating up the open small coal stove to cook dinner – and of course everywhere in the small streets.

From Kralanh it is less than 60 km to the center of Siem Reap. The landscape had changed slightly yesterday, with more dark green in the distance, thicker rows of trees between larger agricultural areas. Also fresh green from rice fields, seen in this way a quite lively landscape, despite the scorching heat.

Posted in Cambodia

Second time Cambodia


Cambodia welcomes me with a lot of dust and sultry heat. The city of Poipet, just behind the border with Thailand, is full of noise and traffic, dusty, and very confusing thanks to the many billboards and street vendors lined up right on the roadside. Whispering mopeds everywhere, sometimes making their way in the opposite direction, honking cars and trucks, which roll relatively slowly but make their way steadfastly.

The entry formalities took much longer than I expected, but we also arrived at the border at lunchtime, which was perhaps a bad time. Although all four counters in the small immigration barrack on the Cambodian side were open. Not all border guards on duty were equally motivated, so it took about three quarters of an hour before the entry stamp with a 30-day permit was finally stamped into my passport.

By the way, it makes no difference, whether you already have a visa on your passport or whether you still have to go to the visa office, that you will pass on your way through no man’s land anyway. Sticking in this Visa on arrival is quick, currently costs US $ 30, and one way or the other you always have to fill out an immigration form and have it stamped. Even if you arrive with an electronic visa. This e-Visa has no advantage; you have to bring it with you on a printout and it keeps everyone waiting because the officer has to scan the barcode of this printout and to do this he has to leave his desk and scan and put it down at a separate work station.
A few Spaniards stood in front of me in my queue, for whom the quite comfortable official had accumulated a few extra minutes just by processing the many e-visas.
But getting impatient doesn’t help at this point, and it was shady in the barrack and bearable thanks to the many fans.

In Poipet I have to orientate myself first, although the road only leads straight. The richness of the impressions and the warmth of the early afternoon are tiring. We have to drive around 2.5 kilometers into the city to my favorite hotel. I stayed there two years ago and it hasn’t changed. Only the attached small restaurant is no longer in operation, which is a shame, because on the small veranda you could sit undisturbed by the traffic in the evening. The rooms with balconies are on the side facing away from the main street and in the afternoon heat the quickly washed laundry dries until the evening.
There are enough restaurants in the vicinity of the Ly Heng Chhay Hotel, as we will see later on a short exploration tour. But first I want to get myself some money and the second most important step today is to get a SIM card with enough data for the next few weeks. There are some banks with imaginative names and with ATM and the ATM I choose unfortunately only tallers US dollars which I exchange at the nearest money changer for Cambodian Riel, which of course can only be a losing deal.
We’ll get a SIM card with a 30-day validity and a data volume that I would never use in a month at home, for $ 9 each. The young lady in the SMART Mobile store is very competent and helpful in setting up the card.
Later in the evening we sit in a Khmer restaurant, which apparently is only visited by locals. There is delicious grilled squid and a raw food plate cooled with ice cubes, in addition we order fried rice with vegetables and Thai beer. The locals do the same.

The power goes out briefly and it is long dark outside. After a short time, a few ‘fireflies’ light up in the large, high restaurant, people light up on the tables with their smartphones. I have my headlamp with me for such situations, but it is now in the hotel, so far there was no need for it in Thailand. However, the interruption lasts only a few minutes, during which traffic outside works with the vehicle headlights through dust and haze.

The last quarter in Thailand, on the outskirts of the village of Khlong Hat, was again a very nice example of simple but well-kept bungalows, which are integrated into a kind of nursery outside the thoroughfare. The manager did not do a long discussion when we got there in the early afternoon and greeted us with the price of the room – “you get a room for 600 baht” without even having asked. A clean room in a quiet environment. Practical that the lady also is able to cook and at least conjures up a rice pan with vegetables for us in the evening.

The last two day trips in Thailand were also fun. The mountainous landscape in the southern half of the province of Sa Kaeo offers a different variety for the eye than the coastal regions can. Wooded mountain slopes, karst landscapes and agricultural areas, mainly sugar cane and occasionally smaller rubber plantations. However, there was suddenly a new problem with Maik’s bike, which had fallen over in a bike rack the day before in Ban Nam Ron, at the local café at the petrol station. We hadn’t seen how that could happen, only that it was suddenly there. But now a spoke has apparently loosened overnight and the whole rim is warped. That looks worse than it is, but Maik can now only use the brake on the front wheel to a limited extent. There are no problems when driving.

About 20 km north of Ban Nam Ron, colorful tents and something like a folk festival could be seen and heard on a monastery site off road 317. As if a stadium announcer was making announcements, a loud voice boomed from a loudspeaker on the premises. Maybe a sporting event? When we curiously put down the bikes below the tents, we were immediately addressed and invited to eat and try the food out. Fruit and drinks are served at some tables, fresh pineapples and colored water ice on thin wooden sticks; grilling somewhere. A friendly gentleman tries to talk to us.
The reason for the Sunday party is apparently the joint construction of the monastery building. The roof is just being covered and several piles of roof tiles in two different colors lie under one of the colorful tents in front of the building, which is still under construction. Everyone can participate with donations and dedicate individual roof tiles, or just sign. After the friendly invitation and the delicious pineapple, we also donate and so it happens that one of the orange colored stones now bears my name.
We do not stay long, because what we saved the route the day before, we have to make up today, to Khlong Hat it will be about 75 kilometers. The wavy road profile suits us a little, because it mainly leads us downhill and often the bike runs by itself.
In Soi Dao we prefer the lunch break after about 35 km because the breakfast in Ban Nam Ron was so spartan. I’ve been hungry for a long time and know from my own experience what it means to eat too little on such a trip. But I can also quickly convince Maik, and we also want to look for a bicycle workshop here that can process the imbalance in its front rim. However, that fails because on Sunday at least in the province, many shops remain closed. Even later we pass a bicycle workshop in a beautiful landscape, which the owner has locked and left and where the neighbor cannot help us to find him (although he seems to live there).

So there was nothing left but to wait until today and just before the border, because the city of Aranya Prathet is big enough to find several bicycle dealers and we are ultimately lucky there and find a well-trained and equipped two-wheeler mechanic who takes the time immediately to help Maik. Then the front rim is almost like new again and we don’t have to worry about it any more.

On the route from Khlong Hat to Aranya Prathet, which sometimes runs quite close to the border with Cambodia, there are checkpoints by the police at almost every major intersection, which were all occupied, but without us being stopped.

Here in Cambodia we immediately notice the somewhat reserved behavior of people towards us strangers and the much less consideration for road traffic. The basic situation is obviously different, because poverty is already evident in the side streets, houses are neglected and rubbish is everywhere, it is cooked on the street on an open fire and the quality of the surface of these side streets (if any) is sometimes catastrophic.
We’ll see tomorrow how the national road 5 develops towards the east, this road actually leads almost straight down to Phnom Phen. Because of the rim problem, I had decided not to take any further detours to Siem Reap, where the journey for Maik ends, then.

Posted in Thailand

From the Rayong province to Sa Kaeo

The coast of the Gulf of Thailand is now far away, the landscape has changed a lot, only the hot climate has remained. However, the first night on the edge of a low mountain range similar to yesterday was a bit cooler than the nights by the sea, even if we were only about 240 meters high, about 50 km north of Chantaburi. The climb at the end of today’s stage on the hot afternoon was pretty hard, because even if the temperature now drops to 25°C at night, it is still 33°C – 35°C in the shade in the afternoon – with almost permanent sunshine. The rather loose cloud cover doesn’t change that much. That’s why I add short breaks from time to time so as not to neglect drinking water, and on this ramp of 6 – 9% gradient we could even do this in the shadow of a wandering Buddha.

The route lengths are now between 60 and 100 km and because of a tire damage to Maik’s bike, I rescheduled the stages a bit so that we had enough time in Chantaburi to get help from a bike dealer there. A nice young man, who, however, had more in mind of his just arriving delivery of new goods than some things from Maik’s bike that we had to look for in his shop after the repair. North of this provincial town, along the smaller country roads, there are many small settlements that more or less merge into one another; rubber tree plantations and also small plantations of oil palms are occasionally seen. The little bit of agriculture along the coast hardly caught my eye; Cassava is grown there, sometimes pineapple. Rather, we had to cross a large chemical and oil processing plant west of Rayong, which apparently manages the oil supply for part of the country.

From Phala Beach, the road led almost straight at a short distance parallel to the coast and to the chemical or refinery facilities, which could already be seen in the distance from the local beach. The shortest way to get past it is going through it, and even if it is a complex on the area of a small town, after less than half an hour this area was behind us again. In the subsequent suburbs of Rayong, this picture was quickly forgotten. Instead, village flair with the usual shops, street vendors – an open barber shop. The young lady patiently presents herself with the boy’s cut in her chair. It is more of a coincidence that I stop for a drink in the shade directly opposite her shop.

You drive into Rayong, similarly as between Chonburi and Pattaya, through slowly getting denser commercial and residential buildings. Tourists hardly get lost in this region, at most outside of Rayong, further east of this somewhat larger provincial town, and of course rather near the coast. Rayong itself is a few kilometers north of the sea. There is a large market with sometimes chaotic delivery traffic, as in other cities. And the post office there was easy to find.

The beaches further east are already much more lonely than they were in the Pattaya area and even in Phala. In spite of the traffic that is always there, of course, it is great to cycle there, and it is nowhere near as stressful as in the major tourist resorts. Along the Lan Hin Khao beach there are colorful, small fishing boats on the beach and many small improvised restaurants under palm trees offer crabs, prawns, sea snails and other mollusks. Before you can look at them in large aquariums. This is nothing for me, but the demand seems to be high.
From Ban Phe, near which we paused a day, there are also regular ferries to Ko Samet Island. There you can meet for overwinterers from Europe or retirees who spend the whole of their retirement in Thailand, e.g. a friendly Swiss, formerly a chef, who has been living in the country with his Thai partner for 7 years, on this secluded stretch of coast now for 2 years.

In the Bay of Klaeng, at Ban Pak Nam Prasae, not only does a broad river flow into the sea, on the banks of which there is a picturesque fishing village with at least as many trawlers as residents, the area is also a vast wetland where mangroves grow and apparently over a large area are also replanted. In a restaurant on the river bank, where there is delicious fish soup, the spirits of the seafarers are given a friendly attitude with food donations, just like the spirits who are everywhere in this country – an interesting facet
Then someone suddenly burns fireworks on a monastery site near the restaurant, because the Chinese New Year is just around the corner. What a hell noise – from time to time we had heard something like that, but it was always difficult to assign and somewhere far away.

But we will soon leave the coastal area, Chantaburi is about 10 km inland in hilly terrain and from there we went temporarily into the mountains today. In Ban Nam Ron, after the effort, we now sit briefly in a café, which is attached to the large petrol station at the intersection there, and drink iced coffee. The place is not big, but there is at least a decent motel and there we surprisingly meet another Berliner – by bike – we call him Günter. He left his previous life as a BVG bus driver behind and now spends the winter in Thailand. However, he is traveling in the opposite direction and wants to drive further south via Bangkok.

Posted in Thailand

From coast to coast


The entire coastal area between Chonburi and Bangsaen is characterized by hotels and so-called resorts, smaller hut or bungalow villages of varied price categories. This continues roughly to Pattaya, whose skyline can already be seen from Bangsaen. This is a holiday region of the Thais themselves, but is also popular with many other Asians and Europeans.
Between the cities, with their riverside promenades, there are always long sandy beaches on which a narrow strip of shade-giving coconut palms is laid out, rows of shops with food stalls and fish boats. There are always simple takeaways and loungers lined up in the direction of the water, which you can rent together with a parasol. This is not particularly inviting, but the way to the big hotels, often right across the street, is not that far.

I only make the mistake once of wanting to ride a bicycle in such a tourist stronghold directly on the beach promenade or on the coastal road. Too many coaches invite travelers to or depart from or wait for day trippers. Group taxis, delivery vans, or people who just want to drive their cars to the sea and are looking for a parking space repeatedly block the left lane, which than is difficult to drive for two-wheelers. You can get faster e.g. in Pattaya with some distance to the sea.

From Bangsaen we drive south along the coast for a few kilometers on a sunny morning, past a small fishing port and after passing the Burapha University campus, which even has its own post office, up to trunk road 3. The sun means well, just like on the first days and the 30-degree mark was quickly exceeded in the early morning. Right at the second traffic light, where we have to stop, two other European-looking cyclists come from the coast onto the trunk road and turn in our direction. A retired Dutch couple, he is about 70 years old, as he says, who spends the winter in Thailand and neighboring countries. We talk briefly about the mutual travel plans, but then drive at our own pace for a few kilometers on the six-lane highway and soon shorten through the fishing village of Bang Phra, which is located directly on the coast.


Later we meet the two again, because they are faster on the highway than we are in the winding alleys of Bang Phra, where we follow a river, on the banks of which are a few boats.
In Sri Racha, we temporarily leave the coastal region completely and drive the next 35 km through commercial areas that alternate with agriculture (cassava, sugar cane) and mostly strung together settlements. Driving is fun here and road traffic is much more manageable. Only at two crossing points with a freeway is truck traffic again more violent.

Only in the late afternoon do we come back to the coast and into the middle of Pattaya. It’s not just rush hour along the quayside and the traffic is largely at a standstill. Because of the large number of pedestrians and the construction site that runs along them, we are not really able to make any progress on the promenade. So back to the second and third row and in the near of a hill above the ferry port, about 2 km from the coast, we find very quiet rooms for the night.
The next day, the traffic volume changes. From Pattaya, we first drive south with a certain distance parallel to the hectic quayside, a fairly new arterial road almost only for us cyclists, at least until it directs us again to Highway 3. It is always loud here and the traffic keeps flowing, but because of the wide hard shoulder you can ride here almost undisturbed and, depending on the wind and terrain profile, you can move forward relatively quickly. So we wind the first 15 kilometers along this expressway and then turn into a hilly region, in which, in addition to a large golf area, there is also an important destination for the Buddhists of Thailand, the Big Buddha Hill. Here the contour of a seated Buddha is painted in gold on the steep wall of a huge, once broken granite rock.

The route leads along reservoirs and past two quarries, sometimes winds up uncomfortably, and now brings us far away from the tourist strongholds on the eastern Gulf Coast. On the 332, which leads further east, we come almost directly to a construction site where we have to accept a detour of about 2 km, which then also gives us an almost exclusive asphalt strip for a few more kilometers.
We take a slightly longer lunch break just before a crossroads in the shadow of a street restaurant set back from this street. There is a delicious soup with crispy noodles and the hot broth is really good, even though I am already heated up by the constant sunshine while cycling.

We meet highway 3 again in the afternoon and this time follow it for a few kilometers to the east before we drive the last 5 – 6 kilometers back to the Gulf Coast. In Phala Beach the selection of guest houses is not particularly large and since Maik still wants to jump into the sea, we stay in two bungalows directly on the beach. Here you can count the people on the beach with just one hand. However, in the hazy distance towards Rayong you can also guess the silhouette of a huge tank farm and the pier for tankers that juts out into the sea, which then somewhat dampens this idyll.

Posted in Thailand

To the east coast of the Gulf of Thailand

It was not before early in the morning that the pump’s engine stopped, which pushed water from the main channel into one of the side arms to supply the surrounding fish ponds. The monotonous chug accompanied the sleep, which was difficult and intermittent in the unusual warmth. Nevertheless, we start from the Chai Khlong Resort somewhat rested at around 28°C and a slightly hazy view in the morning. In order to avoid the wide trunk road and above all the construction site there, we soon drive on a narrow side route through fresh green rice fields and after less than 2 kilometers we meet two older women on packed touring bikes exactly on the top of a small canal bridge. Two cycling enthusiasts from Amsterdam who have been traveling through Thailand for about 8 weeks, and not for the first time, as they say.

Shortly after this chance encounter, we stop at a small street restaurant for breakfast. At least that is our wish. The friendly cook is already cleaning up, but she also means that we can get something to eat and then makes two portions of a delicious rice pan with vegetables and shrimps. A good start into the very hot day in the early morning, and since we only want to drive to Chachoengsao today, we then roll leisurely through the flat landscape, in which rice fields and dry wasteland alternate. Here, too, mobile pumps in some fields provide water distribution from a larger channel that runs parallel to the road into the branch channels that run along the fields. Many herons lurk on these channels for apparently abundant prey in the water. Storks sail across the landscape and sometimes land clumsily on the coconut palms.

The landscape is also a little dominated by the many Buddhist monasteries, which are never arranged in the same way and sometimes lie directly on the street, but sometimes also clearly apart. So I had classified the singing song, which was suddenly perceptible from an indefinite direction, as coming from one of the monasteries. But it had nothing in common with the monotone chanting of the monks and when coming closer, Arabic fragments could be heard in the singing of a male voice. A muezzin from one of the four mosques, also located in this area west of Chachoengsao, who does not call for prayer in the morning, but apparently prays down the entire Koran singing, or better: sings into the area via a distributed network of loudspeakers.
We roll right past a Koran school, the mosques are a bit off the side street and not even 10 km apart, as I will see later on the map. An interesting change in the otherwise very Buddhist dominated Thailand, and if I look closely, some of the young women in this area also wear long headscarves that cover their necks, as women in Malaysia or Indonesia do.

Later in the evening we also hear the actually very monotonous chant of the Buddhist monks who celebrate their kind of prayer in the ‘Wat Sothon Wraram Wohawiran’, a monastery with a large temple complex, which is within walking distance of our accommodation in this city. This temple is obviously very popular with the locals and is full of visitors in the afternoon, as we drive past on the way to the guesthouse where we are staying.

In Chachoengsao we need three attempts to find a room because the first two favorites are already fully booked. I would not have expected that, but this way we come to a corner of the city where this temple district and a small night market adjoining it attract people. On the opposite market we have noodle soup made with seafood in one of the restaurants for a late lunch.

On Sunday we set off early in Chachoengsao, only have a quick breakfast of two toasts to have anything in the stomach, but then we are stuck in traffic for a while because the cars in front of the temple area, which was already well visited yesterday, go in both directions today queue for a long distance to get to the parking lots on the premises. Although they offer a lot of space, we had seen that yesterday on a tour of the extensive grounds, but the access is cumbersome and with such a rush a bottleneck. After about 10 minutes we are past it and roll quickly out of the city at 28°C in the morning. We drive a few kilometers south on the edge of the six-lane 314 and quickly branch off onto smaller connecting roads, which are also flat but not so straight any longer through former swamp areas on the Bang Pakong River.
After about 18 km, as ordered, open but covered and directly above a larger fish pond, there is a friendly restaurant, where we get a noodle soup with fish (who cares?). Finally some iced coffee and the rest of the day is going so well again.

The easier, straightforward route to the coastal areas north of Pattaya would have meant a much shorter route, but these 4- or 6-lane trunk roads also mean a lot of stress due to the permanent traffic with a high percentage of trucks. We drive here a much longer but much more varied route, which always leads to and from one or the other wide road and along it, but also has less traffic and also offers a lot more insights into the country. After 71 kilometers, we still arrive quite early in the afternoon at our destination for today Bang Saen.


Posted in Allgemein, Thailand

Starting again in Bangkok

The bike bags are always packed quickly, just before I start. The bike takes a little longer, but I tied it up the day before I left, now only the large taxi has to be on time and then it can actually start. Where? First I fly to Bangkok and then I want to cycle again towards Cambodia and further north-east. I applied for and received visas for the neighboring countries, even for China, which was a very time-consuming process because you have to appear in person at the Visa Center in order to not only submit the application but also your fingerprints. As an individual traveler you also have to declare every overnight stay in advance, and if you want to travel overland, as I plan to do, you also have to explain your plans in some detail – without mentioning the bike, for sure.

So roughly where I ended my trip two years ago, I want to get back on the roard and the flight from Amsterdam is even on time in Bangkok. Early morning, it is hazy and of course very warm, actually a wonderful day, but I have to get used to the high sun and the oppressive heat. It is about 32°C in the shade when Maik, a friend from Berlin, and I start at one of the many exits of the airport terminal. Maik will accompany me for about a quarter of the planned route.
However, we are initially on the wrong level. The built-up street that leads past the exits of the arrival hall leads as an elevated street directly onto the motorway. So we push the bikes back into the building and take the closest elevator to the basement. There we come to the ground level from the terminal and can turn below the highway to the next intersection with a smaller trunk road to the right and towards Chachoengsao. Airports of this dimension are not designed for cyclists.

Oh yes, it’s a hot day. From the airport to Luang Phaeng Road, which then takes us further to the east, the road runs through very spacious commercial areas and large green areas located on the airport site, which will surely also have storage or factory buildings at some point. After that, the traffic becomes denser and more hectic. The street is partially lined with many small shops and workshops, bus depots or other commercial areas. Sometimes a wide moat crosses the course of the road, which is then spanned by a longer but also narrowing bridge; unpleasant traffic points.

From one of these bridges, I see a street restaurant a little off the road, which we then head for in and finally have something to eat and take a break. However, the warmth of the early afternoon builds up under the relatively high canopy. An older Thai woman runs the small food stall and cooks us some vegetables with meat and a fried egg in her wok with the rice, which she already has ready in an insulated pot.
Here I now have the peace of mind to deal with the phone card I bought at the airport. It works right away in my smartphone, so I can keep in touch with home, as well as occasionally uploading texts like this one.

A few kilometers further we pass a bicycle dealer, whose open business can also be seen from the street. Maik still needs a bottle holder on his bike and the friendly man can promptly mount a suitable part on Maik’s bike. Our water requirements are high and having at least one bottle at hand makes drinking a little easier. I’ve always had three holders on my bike.

So we gradually come closer to our goal for today, which I chose not far from the airport for the day of arrival. A small hut village, far from the main street, which has now been transferred to a construction site, on a side arm of the canal running parallel to the street. Unfortunately, it is not quiet there, as a water pump chugs around the clock, but it is clean and inexpensive.

The desire to explore the strange, exotic places of the world has always been great for me and as long as my environment allows me to give in to it from time to time – well, I like to plan and much more that that, I prefer to implement my plans.