Monday, December 2, 2013

34. Nong Khai

This was funny today. I had everything packed up and ready to go, heading towards Nakhon Panom along the supposedly beautiful winding Mehkong river road, an easy four hour ride, getting me there around 1 p.m.
I had breakfast at the somewhat interesting hotel, a converted big car dealership, run by an older woman and her smart young daughter, a lawyer, no less.

Before I left the town I wanted to ride one more time to the river here in town and have a look at the river promenade in the early morning hours, when a nice older gentleman came out of a small house directly on the river bank and asked me whether I like an espresso. Indeed, he had a brand new, big Italian machine; I couldn't resist.

To make a long story short: After two excellent espressi I booked one of the two rooms he rents and I will stay -unexpectedly- another two days in this quiet, almost tourist-free city on the spectacular river. My window in the second story room overlooks the river and Laos on the other side.

The small place where I stay has two little dogs who were rescued by the owners brother, one male, one female.

He said his brother got the two puppies from the street and then had to spend a fortune on the vet to have all the checks and immunizations done. Of course, and it will not stop there.

My room, second floor.

Sala Kaew Ku. An amazing Buddha sculpture garden, just outside of town. Some of the sculptures are 30 meters tall. Seeing is believing.

Wat Phu taek. Beautiful. I went to get a blessing by the monk.

Good idea in this climate: Almost each little Thai town has one or more outdoor gyms which are very much used in the evening hours. This one has the splendid river location.

I met this nice Muslim couple on a 2014 BMW R1200 GS Adventure, water-cooled, from Singapore
They came from Laos and told me that they brought the mud from there. Very bad roads!

They mounted also a good selection of TOURATECH merchandise on the bike.

They are heading to Hua Hin on the oter side of the Gulf of Siam for the December 4th Bike Week.

The "casual" river border crossing into Laos. Not available to me.

Tuk Tuk.

"I don't like to have my picture taken!"

Doggie: "Oh yes, this is great, please take many pictures of me, I am sweet, aren't I?"

 Last but not least I have to report that my earlier fascination with the hand-washing services here have waned. I know that power washing is not good for motorcycles to start with, but it was just a delight to watch them do it. No more! One of the last times I had the bike washed they destroyed with the power water blaster  my horn which I had mounted especially for this trip. (Circumnavigating BMW's one-wire CAN-BUS. Who understands what I mean must be impressed.)

Since I stay a relaxing two more days here I went to the car electric place and had a new German HELLA horn (Made in India) mounted. It took them a little over an hour, including the part for the equivalent cost of $ 8. Not too bad. 

A horn is needed here.

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