09 June 2012

A boring day today. We left Sawankhalok to go to south to Lopburi.
First bus from Sawankhalok to Phitsanulok. A 2 hour bus trip that turned into almost 3.

The trip wasn’t too bad.  The bus was full and Anna and I had to sit in different seats.  When we could finally sit together, and old couple boarded the bus.  The lady could find a seat, but the man could not.  No one offered him a seat, so I gave him mine.  Standing there, you couldn’t really see the view, so I was stuck watching a movie about Thai kids.  This was a bit bizar, as they were trying to raise money for a dance competition?  Still the monks in it made me laugh.  After an hour or so, the bus cleared enough that I could sit down again.  We still havent worked out Thai Busses.  This was supposed to be an Air conditioned direct bus.  It seemed to stop everywhere to pick people up and let them off.  Next time we need to, we will try to flag one down.
In Phitsanuklok we went by taxi to the train station and asked about a train to Lopburi.
The next one was to come in 15 minutes, good timing! When Anna asked what time the train was going to arrive in Lopburi, we were downgraded from second class to third class.. Must have been a misunderstanding. But it is cheaper, so we decided to leave it.
The ticket we got had departure time 10.15. By now it was 12.30, so our train had a bit of delay already. We figured it would make up for some of it over the rest of the trip. It was supposed to be a 4 hour train ride. Of course it turned into 6 hours.(sigh)As we were going along there were the hawkers trying to sell their wares on the train.  As we hadn’t had anything to eat, we decided to try our luck with a fried egg on rice.  It was pretty good.  Better than QANTAS food anyway.  (Much better, you could eat this!) The guy selling drinks was insistent though.  He kept trying to sell me a chang beer.  I don’t think he could understand why a farang would do this trip sober.  He eventually got the point and we had a pleasant trip.  However as the station stops continued, and the sky darkened we started making jokes about Thai trains.  We were a bit worried about missing our stop, as there is no notification, and the only way to find out which stop you are at is to see the sign at the beginning of the station as it goes past you.  This is very quick, and if you are not paying attention you miss it completely.  To make matters worse, you can never tell what side of the train it is going to be on.

As it got later, the lights in the train went on, and the clouds built up.  It wasn’t looking good to make Lop Buri before dark.  With the clouds, we said that with our day, it would be just our luck that when it started raining we would reach our station.

It did start raining, and we joked that our station was coming up.  As I had tempted fate earlier, I decided to get the bags down.  A wise choice as we arrived at the station about thirty seconds later!

 

According to our guide book there were a couple of hotels on the street running parallel to the station, so we waited for the rain to stop, and set out in search of them.  The first one was cheap.  180 baht.  We decided to see the room first.  A wise decision.  The room was walled off, but open up the top.  Everyone in the corridor could see the light above the wall, and would be able to hear us talking. This wasn’t too much of a problem, and we were still willing to give it a go.  Checking the toilet.  It was asian style.  Not really our thing, but also doable.  However it was on the main road, directly across from the railway lines.  No real windows, so it would also be noisy.  Still, its only for a night.  However there was one thing we needed tonight.  WiFi.  Without it we couldn’t send you these updates.  Asking at the desk if they had it, the answer was no.  I think we were both relieved.  Grabbing our bags we headed on.  We did find a hotel that had a western toilet (don’t flush the paper though) completely walled rooms, windows.  Off the main street and Wifi.  Perfect.  Although as only just discovered, no hot water!  Still its 250 baht.  about $8.  There is only one power point in the room, and we have just spent all evening on a small table crammed beside a car typing up the last few days, as this is the only spot the WiFi reaches.  Still, it was worth it.
All is good and looking forward to tomorrow. Lopburi has some old Khmer ruins in town, and a lot of monkeys! We have seen a few tonight, but tomorrow we will visit the main temple where the monkeys hang out. Should be fun..

P.S.  Please comment on the blog.  As far as we know, only one person is reading it.  That’s ok, but we would like to know what you think.  If you want photos of something specific, or more information.  To comment, click the speech bubble at the top right of a post.

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