Trains And Boats And Planes.
And so we come back to Thailand and she greets us much like an ‘Ex’ with whom one is still on speaking terms – just.
Not with open arms, but her fists are certainly unclenched.
We have only one night in this Issan city of Ubon Ratchathani.
The familiarity of the food and the attitude here is comforting after being lost in Laos.
Today, as I visited the umpteenth temple of our travels, in search of yet more enlightenment, I find myself in trouble.
I leave my shoes on the wrong step when entering the sacred space. As I leave, I notice the cleaner has moved them into the dirt and is now scrubbing down the step in the manner of an ‘Ebola’ outbreak. Do I really look that unclean? Quite possibly, after a week without any decent water and no ‘bum-gun’ in sight!
I re-shoe and go in search of Andrew – who has been distinctly absent since I entered the temple grounds.
Then, I spot him.
He is deeply engaged with a Burmese tramp who is bumming ciggies at the entrance.
The three of us share beer, chew the fat ( from entirely different animals! ) and pass the time.
The ‘down and out’ then asks me for my hand – I offer it up willingly. He grabs it like a wrestler and flips it over to reveal my palm, probably fracturing several small bones in the process.
He studies it for several seconds. He then shoots me a look worthy of Shelley Duvall in ‘The Shining’.
‘You no goo, you no goo’ he says repeatedly.
He then, gently takes Andrew’s palm.
‘You goo. You very goo’.
It is at this point that I realise this chiromancy is just a load of crystal balls!
But what isn’t a load of bollocks here is the way the modern and the ancient join almost seamlessly.
You can be reminded of the very special that exists always within the most ordinary.
Thank Buddha for that!
And now – A new adventure!
We leave Thailand with heavy hearts and even heavier ruck sacks!
One tuk-tuk, two very small aeroplanes and a local bus…….
Malaysia, here come The Lola Boys!
I’m hoping the journey will be less eventful as some of the others.
After all, I’ve booked the tickets this time!
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