I stumbled back to the station where I left my wife. After a 4 hour minivan drive my stomach is again upset. Why are the air-co’s so cold, probably because it’s so warm outside. I can’t stand it. All sweaty I saw my wife pointing to the clock, the train from Hat Yai to Sungai Kolok was about to leave. We were running to the platform with our bags on our shoulders, only to find out that we ran for nothing. The train was delayed for half an hour. Yeah, traveling by public transport is fun.

The train was perfect, though. Wooden benches back to back. Enough space to put your bags and feet. The windows could open easily all the way down and best of all, you can see the backside of the country along the track. We slowly roar down the back of the cities. Seeing all the dirt and rubbish thrown away on places nobody care about, all the streets which look nice on the front are shelter for homeless people on the back.

When you’re out of the city with the train you’ll see places no cars will go. Were only we, the people on the train, could see the beauty of undisturbed chaos of trees and plants. Like there’s no-one else in the world but we, on this train. If this train would stop and never could continue, we are alone in the wilderness. Then we need to live to survive and conquer the chaos of the rainforest.

My thoughts drift away in the escape of nature. But after a few minutes we already passed another small station. Even in the greatest wilder, people could live.

Then I started to look around in the train. We came from Krabi, Thailand, that day. Where you see a lot of tourist or tourist-minded Thais. But now on the train they seem to be disappeared. They made place for Thai people who don’t like to be seen. People you don’t expect to see in Thailand. Woman with long sleeves and scarves. Men with turbans and Korans in their hands.

The stations where highly secured by soldiers with their fingers on the triggers of their guns. Ready to fire, ready to fight against the Islam. I must say, we were a little bit terrified by it.

After five hours my ass still didn’t hurt, surprisingly, because on most chairs I wouldn’t make it that long without moving. Probably I was to busy sniffing culture and enjoy this part of a country where I really wanted to leave as soon as possible. But after thinking my ass still didn’t hurt I lost my thoughts and only could think about leaving this train.

–          I ride slow trains with my mind on high speed.

Rik

 

 

 

Traveling through countries is tough. Not like years ago when there were no hostels and English speaking people everywhere. But because everything is explored already. No piece of land in the world is undiscovered. In the most rural places in the world you can find other travelers or tourist. That makes is tough to go out and explore and search for loneliness. I’m just 23 years old, married, traveling and learning. With my wife of course, she’s part of my life and travel. She’s the reason I’m here, the reason to go.

We met a lot of people which are flying from city to city, from country to country. Spend money, see some sights and go. It’s fine by me, but what is the point? Well, that’s my point of view. We, my wife and I, try to keep in mind that the journey is far more important than the destination. To meet local people is far more important than to meet other western tourist or travelers. We’ll never be a part of the places we go, but we can try to fit in as much as possible. So, were not a part of them, but we get the respect for trying. Which is enough for me. Were other travelers fill the pockets of the local people, we get the respect. Not that we are the only travelers traveling this way, but it’s a select group of people, who got the guts to explore. We bought a motorcycle in Hanoi, Vietnam, and try to ride it as long as possible through south east Asia. Not an uncommon thing to do for two young travelers in Vietnam. It’s popular, and there is no reason it shouldn’t be. We crossed the border into Cambodia. I’m thrilled by the long rust colored sand roads crossing a country as rural as you’ll hope to see one day. Children who will love your balloons you bought  for them. Amazing rivers and unexplored abandoned temples, warning signs of the Khmer rouge and scars in the country’s history.

My knowledge will not go any further than Google and Wikipedia. Knowledge about the Khmer rouge is one click away. With my laptop on my knees trying to learn myself the imported things about the world my teachers never taught me. Do I need this laptop on my exploration? Yes, I write some stories, store my photos, educate myself and most important it makes me feel home. How bad I don’t want it, I’m from the digital generation. It’s part of my life, like a pen and paper was back in the days when I was long from being born, when songs meant more than politicians words, when traveling meant ‘never coming back’ and writing was the magic of the ink finding its way becoming stories. No, this is not as romantic but it can be magic again.

–          My destination is the road.

Rik

 

#001 – First post.

February 16, 2011

First post. No stories, yet.