HoboTraveler.com Travel Tips Newsletter
And Updates on Around The World Trip

ISSUE:  079
DATE:  August 06, 2002
TITLE:  Hobo TRAVEL TIPS - Hobo Traveler Purgatory -AIR DRY CLOTHES FAST
TIP:  Air Dry Clothes Fast
LOCATION:  Ko Lanta, Thailand Close to Krabi

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Hobo TRAVEL TIPS - Hobo Traveler Purgatory -AIR DRY CLOTHES FAST
Issue 79 Hobotraveler.com - August 6, 2002
http://www.hobotraveler.com/
A Hobo trip around the world. Year 5

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~   HOBO STEW (A Dish of Meat and Vegetables)
        Location of Hobo and opinions
PUTTING TOGETHER THE PUZZLE
~   HOBOGUIDE.COM (Go this way)
Hobo Traveler Purgatory
       A story of a good place to visit.
~   TODAY’S TIP - AIR DRY CLOTHES FAST
~   EXTREME HOBO TRAVEL -
           Dennis & Scott Bike Around World
~   TODAY’S TIP FROM THE - “Peanut Gallery”
~   HOBO QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
~   HOBO GOSSIP and/or Jaded Remarks
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~   HOBO STEW (A Dish of Meat and Vegetables)

JUST TOO FUNNY
Do not leave. The next section of this newsletter in
Go this way... is
“Just too funny.” READ IT.

PRELUDE to funny.

PUTTING TOGETHER THE PUZZLE
I am sure I have a complete thought somewhere
and somehow if I can only find all the pieces.
This book “The Beach” is nagging and calling me
names. This guy Alex Garland is younger and smarter
and is positive I have “Lost the Plot.”
“You are not a traveler”
“You just think you understand me?”
“Americans are stupid and not capable of understanding.”
“There is no way you can explain Beach Life.”

Alex Garland is probably over in the Philippines laughing
at all of us for “Taking the piss out of us all....”
He wrote a book, then they make it into a movie.
Then we are all afraid to say,
“I do not get it?”
So we say instead,
“The book was better than the movie.”
A pat answer.
I leave tomorrow for KOH PHI PHI
and soon a story about the “The Beach...”

E-MAIL EMPATHY
I know you opened your e-mail box and
not a book. So you do want me to send you a book.
Just a short and funny e-mail and some good photos.

I apologize.
I am a guy that had a 12 hours trip in cars, vans, buses
and boats. I could write a book about the experience.
It would take that long to analyze and explain my
thoughts and feelings, so to try to keep it short is a
push.

I desperately try to keep these newsletter short and
brief. I know I have failed. I am trying to give you
all the pieces to the puzzle one e-mail at a time.
So hope you stay with me. When I give you chapter
11 of the book and you have not read the prior 10.

I am sending this newsletter out of sequence.
It will make better sense after you read the next one.
Maybe....?

This issue has very funny story in the next section.
Read about Hobo Purgatory

The Tip is about
How to Quick Dry your Hand washed clothes.

Just another day in Paradise!
PLAN YOUR ESCAPE...
Be a Hobo, and leave your mark.

X     Hobotraveler.com was HERE!

Life is good.
The Hobotraveler.com

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
Article written by Andy the Hobotraveler.com
On year 5 of Hobo trip around the world.
Budget Travel, Jobs, and Adventure, etc
Subscribe to Free Newsletter at:
http://www.hobotraveler.com/
You may publish this article for Free
on the internet If this box stays attached.
<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>

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~   HOBOGUIDE.COM GO THIS WAY !

HOBO TRAVELER PURGATORY

Purgatory is a word I like to use, but not be
asked to explain. Makes me sound intelligent because
I have one of them fuzzy logic understandings and can
use it that way....Fuzzy

My whole life is and has been formed in a world of
Protestant Christian family and to obey the
10 commandments. This was very good for me
and for that I am grateful to my parents. So when I
use the term purgatory, I use it carefully because I
think it is a Catholic thing.

If you travel the world it is not difficult to see that religions
are normal and the most common tourist attractions are
Churches, Temples, Mosques, and every other type of
religious shrines. I consider this very boring, but accept
that the world is VERY curious about why we are here?
That big question you wrote about in University.
La raison d'être
The meaning of life.

Travel is about leaving one place and going to another.
There are three places. Where we start and how
we live our lives. The trip to the next location and our final
destination. The meaning of traveler life is about all three.


THE STORY STARTS
Sitting in Kota Bharu, Malaysia in a country
that is suppose to be more modern than Thailand.
At least according to the gossip of the other travelers. I am
getting the distinct feeling they are all reading the
guidebook again, and not opening their eyes.

There is an common area in the Hotel I am staying.
Nice, shaded and quiet. The Hotel is suppose to
be an “Ideal Travelers” place, but I would call it OK.
And below the standards of Thailand. Twice the
cost of Thailand and half the quality. The owner keeps giving
me that look, like you cheap-ass. You never buy our
expensive breakfast of boiled egg and white bread toast.
Why would I want a breakfast of boiled egg and
white bread toast? All the other lemmings can eat it.

OK... Dusk has come. All are sitting around and
doing the Traveler shuffle. Who are you? Where
are you from? Where do you go?
Bingo...
I find a couple form Austria going the same direction
as me and the same place.... At these times.
I get extremely nervous.
This is a time for commitments.
Yes.... I will also leave on the 6:15 bus number 29
to the border of Thailand and Malaysia.
Maybe we can go together.

TAKE THE EDGE OFF
I have experience with this type of problem, and
know that changing the subject will take the edge
of the negotiating tension of how much we share
our trip together. On the same bus, or we can sit
close to each other and discuss traveler subjects.
They are really an excellent couple and it really is
not problem. But to be the mature person.
I utilize an opportune moment to change the subject when
Monica says,
“Look a mouse.”

I look up, and know from a prior nights experience.
This is not a mouse, but a RAT. I am not sure
if in their native language of Austrian German
they differentiate. I just know that I would rather
see a mouse than a rat. But nonetheless there is
a rat climbing along the rafter of the corrugated asbestos
roof. He is making his way toward the main
building and the other occupants of the hotel.
It would be a she if the rat was going towards
my room.

I think they call it a guesthouse. But for spite.
I will call it a Hotel. A room A key. Hallways.
The kitchen is not a place I feel I should enter.
I am not a guest, I am a resident, or client.

LIGHTS CAMERA ACTION
So to take the tension off the moment of how and
whether we should share the experience of following
the trip together. I say,
“I am going to get my camera.”

I run to my room. Grab my Sony Mavica Digital Camera.
Check the 3.5 disk for memory space, and know.
This is when a X10 optical zoom, and a high
powered flash can be of value. All for only 400 dollars
USA. I can take a picture of a RAT.

Most of you would get excited about waterfalls, mountain
ranges, and beautiful beaches. I am getting an extreme
adrenaline rush.
I am talking myself,
“I am going to do it.”
“I am going to take larger than life photo of a RAT.”
“I am going to prove to the world, this place is OK
not an ideal HOTEL and has RATS.”

I am probably dealing with a few personal issues about
the rat thing and the Hotel. I have personal prejudices about
what I like in a Hotel, Hostel, or place to stay. I am the contrarian
here. I think the place is OK, and but I am getting a little
fed up with hearing the other residents say,
“The owner is so nice.” or
“This is really a great place.”

ITS GOT RATS
It not only has rats. I am going to prove it
to the world.

I think I average 2 hotels or hostels a week.
52 weeks in a year.
5 years of travel.
That means 520 different rooms in total.
Mosquitoes are normal.
Cockroaches are standard partners.
A miscellaneous Iguana in my room in
Managua Nicaragua.
Rats are rare.

ITS THE ANTS FAULT
This built up frustration started with
a girl from New Zealand saying,
“I can see you are not Buddhist.”
I give a cross-eyed look across the table, trying to
say politely.
I am in no mood to hear that British pomp ass stuff
or save the world stuff right now. Or if she was
a hate the world, leave the USA person that left
because you could not compete leave me alone also.
“Please let me kill the ant in peace.”
I was in the middle of smashing an ant.

But no she is a well balanced, friendly and interesting person
from New Zealand. That teaches in School in England.
What that says about here otherwise balance mental
state I will refrain from explaining. But she is funny
and has a great wit. She accepts without judgement
although she does not agree. I do have the right
to kill an ant that is walking around on table under my nose
but she will not participate.

I think in the Buddhist world they believe in reincarnation.
She is starting to explain, but realizes that only
eggs me on. As we talk and laugh I proceed to kill
some more. I am muttering just loud enough for
her to hear.
“Re-incarnated Andy Number 1.”
“Re-incarnated Andy Number 2.”
“Re-incarnated Andy Number 3.”
I try to explain. I want to be the only one living
(I feel like the Highlander)

I do not like ants. One lone ant can organize
an army to enter my room or bed.
It’s me against a multitude of small red things
that bite.

BIG ONE - FAT ONES - LITTLE ONES
So as we sit there and become good travel
friends, and find how we are more the same
and not that much different. A conversation that
started, and should be blamed on the Ants turns
into a longer and longer conversation. Time passes
and the night grows darker.

Slowly but surely the Rats come out. One here and
one over there. As we proceed past the 3rd one
I am starting to keep count. The are behind us
in a over ran mix of brush, green stuff, and a fence.
There is a canopy of green color that forms
a semi-solid wall at the end of the tabled common
area.

She is giving me a sincere and well intended
explanation. She likes rats, and they do not bother
her. I shake my body, and cross my eyes again.
Telling her,
“This is the first place I have every lived with that
may rats.”
I think the count is up to 8 now.

I have seen a lot of hit and run rats.
Take a look and run. But not this type of rat.
They are the lollygag around type.
Like a couple of old fat tourist that spend
money to entertaining themselves, and stop and look
at everything the locals made specifically to sell to
tourist. The rats just hang around and do not leave.

I enjoyed a day of laughs with this exceptional
woman and she left for the Perhentian Islands.
I met up again with a Swiss girl I met in Railly Beach
and she Penned me into her agenda. I thought she was
using a pencil to plan the travel fun, and learned soon
we had different ways of thinking. All was great.
I entered Malaysia to get my Visa stamped
and returned to Thailand for more half price beach
fun.
      
NO PICTURES OF RATS
Sort of anti-climatic.
But that is the my life. I get this huge adrenaline push,
and decide. These RATS will not survive.
Paparazzi Andy and his Sony Digital wonder is
going to make them famous.
I sit in a plastic reclined chair. Ready and able to focus
the #10 Zoom Optical Lens on these ugly RODENTS.
I feel I have the right to kill rats also, but instead
I will take their photos.

I sit in the lotus camera position waiting patiently for
the next hour. The Austrian couple are not sure.
This irreverent American is not quite with the program.
I forgot to tell you. I have on my extremely bright blue
FAVORITE new Hawaii style shirt with little “Surfboards”
graphics.

This shirt plays hard on the emotions of Europeans
and their pre-conceived stereotypes of Americans.
Here I am a living stereotype.
1. Camera around neck.
2. Bright beach clothes.
3. Talking and not shy. Too confident.

There could have dismissed all of this and
did as all the others in the room. Look the other
way. Except they knew. I was not taking photos of
some beautiful scenery. I was waiting for a
RAT.

HAD ENOUGH
The intrigued couple decide to leave.
I admit my failure. I am not paparazzi Americano.
I cannot even capture a RAT photo.

6:15 CURTAIN CALL
Bus number 29.

The bus is to leave Kota Bharu, Malaysia and
go to the Thailand Border. This is the first bus of the day.
I want to go to Krabi, Thailand. The Austrians
want to go to the Island of Ko Lanta. This is suppose to be
backpacker newby haven for people that think
Koh Phi Phi is just too much tourist class.

Either way in my mind. Krabi is the staging point
to make the trip to Ko Lanta. They are on a 3 week
vacation and have a need for speed. So they are going
to go the whole distance in one day. I keep my mouth
shut, but am thinking loudly to myself.
Impossible.

ITINERARY TRAVEL
The planned travel itinerary is something like this.
6:15 Catch Bus to Thailand - Malaysia Border
7:00 ? Cross border.
7:00 ? Taxi to either Train or Bus station one kilometer away.
7:00 - 8:00 Bus to Had Yai. (Maybe train)
11:30 Catch Bus to Trang.
2:000 Catch Bus to Krabi.
4:00 Catch Boat to Ko Lanta.
The catch here is... There are too many “Catches.”
One will get off the hook.

ONLY IN MY DREAMS
Reality is different than dream life.
This is the itinerary of the consummate Travel Agent
Patron and not a Travelers. I just end up where
I end up, and deal with it. Or stop around noon
and find a room. I came from Krabi and am
willing to be adventuresome, and go for the whole
trip. Sounds like a challenge, and if I end up sleeping
another night in Had Yai, or if we are really lucky.
Trang that is OK. I will have some good people to
share the trip with.

Monica and Thomas are not tourist in the conventional
sense, and they know they are wishing on lucky stars.
But their time is short in Asia, and I enter into their
conspiracy of hope. Plus I know in a former
RE-INCARNATED LIFE I was really the worlds
greatest adventure travel guide.

I do believe that I can help, and double the odds.
I can force blind chance to open the door.

REAL TRAVEL
If you are losing the story. That was our anticipated
plan, and not really what happened. I am going
to start now on the real trip.

I awake. Pack, then load up with Backpack, Frontpack
and my Reebok gym shoes that I carrying in my hands.
I leave the room.
I get to the exit.
The gate of Hotel entrance is padlocked.
Fortunately the indifferent owner lady come to
open the massive gate. This is an underdeveloped
nation, and there is a small difference between a
cell and Hotel. Here though, they lock you in to keep
the people out, and not to keep you in. But the reality
is it does both.

ON THE FLOOR
Stocking feet and loaded with packs.
I am wanting to put on my shoes.
Out of respect for their religion I have my shoes
off till I leave the building. But I proceed to sit on
the floor and put my shoes on while I wait for the
turnkey to open the cell door.

I am risking social ostracization and religious intolerance.
I am still not outside the house yet.
The lady is not brave enough to tell me to wait.
( I think I gave her a cross-eyed look also )

BUS NUMBER 29
I keep saying this, and mocking the number.
Very seldom do I know the exact number, and do
people talk with exact numbers. It is the bus to so and so
and leaving to go here.
Not number 29.
But this is actually better.

FIRST COME - FIRST SERVE
I am at the bus stop early. I am not sure of the local
customs for getting on buses in Malaysia. I instinctually know
that I do not need a ticket to get on, and will pay the
driver. But I am a little worried. This pack of people
around the sign NUMBER 29 are maybe 5 more
than the bus can handle according to my imaginary
mental seating chart.

Monica and Thomas arrive and seem a little in
marveled that I could wake before them. I think they
have heard the gossip that Americans are stupid.
So maybe I will be late, or miss the bus,
but how did I get in front to them?

The bus comes, and the line forms.
As was my fear, everyone cuts line.
No respect for a Queue or line.
I think they need to insert a new commandment
as a universal divine and cooperative agreement
of all Gods.
DO NOT CUT LINE
Respect the queue.

I was very early and with my pretend seating chart.
I would board the bus 10th. Being respectful
and sharing the line with the Austrians. We wait
to load our backpacks in the lower outside compartment.
The guy never comes, and we step into the bus
with complete travel gear. The driver is not
going to leave his seat under any condition.
It is still dark, and the sun is hiding.
I pull myself on the bus. Looking for handles
to use to hoist myself on board.
Dropping my big pack in the bus aisle.
We have created the normal social dilemma
for locals.
“Should I step on the foreigners backpack?”
If they walk over or manage the situation with
the proper respect they will not learn about reincarnation.
Yet.

VERY GOOD HELP
I am sitting next to a very helpful man from
Malaysia that live in Singapore, and talks 10
words of 6 Language. English, Thailand, Arabic,
whatever they speak in Singapore, and assorted
other sounds. We have a good conversation using the
10 English words, and me nodding my head. He is a
genuinely good guy, and helped to explain when
and where to leave the bus. He did put his hand on
my leg 3 times more than was proper, and seem to
rest his arms on my frontpack sitting in my lap.
I am wondering about this new culture. They seem to be
able to more personal with men, than with women.
He was harmless, and was a good ambassador of his
country. Plus we got off exactly at the border because
he stopped the driver perfectly. Saving us a lot of
walking.

BORDER CROSSING
It went like normal clockwork.
Except for the small lecture from the official
because my passport is full of stamps, and
needs some extra sheets. He gave me that look
like..
We do not like people,
that know too many countries.
Only the ignorant should enter
MENTAL NOTE:
Stop in Bangkok at American Embassy and
get some new pages added to my passport.
(I also can help relieve mental stress for border guards.)

TAXI TO BUS STATION
I am saying. Krabi, Thailand to the Taxi drivers.
I want them to take us to our best choice.
There is no train to Krabi from Kota Bharu direct.
So I am steering Monica and Thomas toward the idea
that a bus to bus transfer is better. A transfer from
a train to a bus is more complicated.

IN THE TAXI
We arrange 3 taxis.
One for each of us. I am pulling your chain.
These are Motorcycle Taxis.
They cost about 3 Ringgit in Malaysia money
or 20 Baht in Thailand money, or about 75 Cents
USA and the motorcycle race starts. We hit the
last speed bumps of the turnstiles or crossing gates
of officially leave Malaysia and enter Thailand.
I am always looking back at these moments.
Hoping those guys the machine guns stand down
and keep smoking cigarettes
3 Motorcycles.
2 people on each.
1 or 2 large backpacks.
If you want a helmet...?
This is a Carry Your Own Helmut Country
or bring your own.

30 MINUTES TO SPARE
The 3 taxis pull up to a stop.
Go-Lok to Had Yai the sign says.
I have not idea what a Go-Lock is, but find
out later we are in the city of Ko-Lok.
I am typical and will not pay the taxi until I know
we are at an acceptable place. The cost is
150 Baht to Had Yai, and is 100 less than I paid
on the trip coming to Malaysia. Plus it is an
Air Conditioned Mini-Van and should be faster.
We are in a hurry, and that is good.

We each pay the taxi drivers.
Monica and Thomas have no Thailand Baht
money and want to go to an Automatic Teller
Machine (ATM) and withdraw money. I knew
they did not have Baht the night before, and offered
to trade some USA dollars for Baht.
They declined.

SMARTLY SUSPICIOUS
They were wise enough to be careful with me.
They did not just trust me and go along.
I noticed this again when I offered to watch the
backpacks while they went for money from
the ATM. They agreed and left, then 5 seconds later
Monica returned to watch the bags with me. I realized
they had second thoughts, and thought better than just
trusting me. This is NOT normal traveler behavior. Most
just trust anyone. I am the same as them, and thought.
These two are pretty smart. Be conservative. Both
of them are not needed to get money. I would have done
exactly the same in their situation.
This made me feel better. I am with two above
average people and I am re-adjusting my mental stereotype
of cigarette smoking Europeans.

MINI-VAN TO HAD YAI
I think the trip to Had Yai is about 3 hours.
I do not wear a watch, and have no idea why
I would wear one, or care about the time.
Morning, Afternoon, and Night are specific enough
for me.

FIRST TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS
The characters of the novel are....
4 “Farang” or Foreigners
2 girls, 1 guy. Being rich Thailand
3 Boys Thailand.
Driver and Girl Sidekick

We picked up a girl of unknown Farang origin.
I am 90 percent sure from Britain.
But an outside chance of Australia or New Zealand.
Way beyond the limits of reason chance of
South Africa. She speaks English.

TEST ENGAGEMENT
Sort of cute, in a getting older faster than
needed sort of way, and I tried a test engagement
in a conversation before getting on the bus.
I experience way to many hormone induced
motivations in my life, but I always like to test
the water.

I get the thought in my head that she cannot
be bothered with me, and I am getting the same
thought in my head about her. She is very pleasant
at a talk across the room distance. Upon getting
in the bus, I was expecting her to get into the
the normal traveler or tourist Farang groupings
and sit within talking distance of us.

Nope.
She seem to enjoy the solitude and we sat in the
back, and she sat in the front with the driver and
female sidekick.

BACK TO FIRST TRIAL
We are loaded and cruising.
Life is good, and we are making great time.
I can tell the driver likes to go fast.
We slow and weave ourselves through a
police stop. I am trying to ignore this.
In a daze between sleep, and being aware
what is happening.

Suddenly there is a police, military, or some guy
asking very straight forward questions of
the 3 boy in the far rear of the mini-van.
My mind sort of shift into high gear, and
I sit up in my chair to enjoy the show.

50 MILE STOP - 50 KILOMETERS
Borders have these double stop areas.
There is a “No-Mans” land between the countries.
This the walk between the crossing gates from one
country to the next. I guess they mean, no man knows
who owns it, and when you cross the border or maybe
no man is suppose to STOP in this area. But fun
to speculate as long as no one explains, and destroys
my fun in speculation.

The second stop that sometimes exist is the one hour
stop, or 50 mile / kilometers. These uniforms have stopped
us a this distance. They was looking for an Asian person.
They did not even ask for my passport. So I felt estranged.
Normally they check your passport to let you remember.
You are a foreign VISITOR or to say,
“I be official.”

Sometimes there are more stops.
Like between Colombia and Venezuela.
The Venezuelans set a record.
8 separate stops. These a bribe stops. The driver slipped
the Venezuelan Police money, and we would keep
moving. This happened 8 time. My all time record.
Mexico should give the record a challenge.

THE SHOW
Police stops are great shows.
Providing I am not the lead actor in the show.
This time the 3 Thailand boys were the leads.
The normal elapse time in these situations is about 5 minutes
tops. Just a small harassment and maybe a small amount
of money and we leave. This one lasted 15 minutes.
WE even all got out of the mini-van.
I also took pictures. NOT advisable at these things.
Something genetic about uniformed officials. They do
NOT like their photos taken.
Paparazzi Americano.

I do not speak Thai. The driver does not speak
English. The girls sidekick is only there for looks.
Nobody in the bus that speaks Thai, also speak
English, and that includes the Rich Thailand.
But I have a feeling we were too low classed for
them to share conversation.

1 In a 100 Foreigners speaks even conversational
Thai, so there is no way to understand the situation.
So we have no idea why they stopped us
and what they wanted, and never will.

ON THE ROAD AGAIN
Making great time again, in this country
with excellent highways systems. We zoom along
and try to adjust the air conditioning vents to point
directly at ourselves.

SECOND TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS
Cling, clip, clack
I am sure I am the only one that noticed.
The driver noticed the noise also.
Pulls over to the shoulder the road and gets out.
Proceeds to point at the English speaking.
(Maybe British) girl in the passenger seat.
She is clueless and they finally communicate with
hand language for her to get out.

The motor is in the front. Between the
driver and the passenger seat, and is below
where the girl sidekick was sitting.

WARNING WARNING
I look over that Austrian guy.
I say,
“Get ready for the temperature to
rise by 10 degrees.’
He looks at me, and does not understand.
The driver opens the engine hood that is located
inside the Mini-Van. The motor is still running
and the enclosed “Conditioned Air” in one minute
is exchange for engine hot tropical air.
A quick 10-20 degree temperature gradient.
I am getting a little tired of being inside the Van
and start to reach for the handle.
I have trouble suffering fools.
Probably genetic.
(Shut the motor off. Keep your clients comfortable,
relaxed, and informed.)

ROADSIDE CIRCUS
4 Farang and Thailand People.
Nobody to translate.
The drivers head is in the engine.
He throws a broke fan belt on the ground.

HMMM I CALCULATE THE TIME
With a stroke of Gods will. (Maybe Buddha)

The driver and sidekick both have cellular
telephones and start multiple calls for help.
Let me think.
1/2 hour to get it here.
1/2 hour to install a new fan belt, and I can help.
( I am extremely mechanical inclined)
1 hour for repairs and we leave.

I WAS BEING NICE.
Include THAI TIME.
Add “Suffering the fools” time.
It will be minimum of 2 hours delay,
IF we are lucky.

AUSTRIAN MATHEMATICAL BRAIN
The Austrians and the Germans are similar mentally.
Thomas is quickly assessing that there
is a snow balls chance in hell of them
getting to the Island of Ko Lanta.
I really appreciate the intelligence of German mentality.
Providing they leave the word “But” off the
end of sentences.

2ND CHATTING TEST
In the first chat with the no name foreign
girl I asked her if she had the guidebook.
Lonely Planet Thailand.
I have the Lonely Planet Southeast Asia,
and the Austrians have the Lonely Planet
Islands and Beaches. I want to find out about
cheap hotels in Trang or a very small city
by the name of Khan Kun or some other
unspellable word.

She doe not have a guidebook and I ask what
she knows about Ko Lanta.
She has visited the island and says it is great,
I am asking a very specific question,
“Which city or dock does the boat leave from?”

WEST COAST OF THAILAND
Ko Lanta in the Andaman Sea

EAST COAT OF THAILAND
Surat Thani is on the Gulf of Thailand.

FIRST CHAT ANSWER
The 1st time I think she said,
“Surat Thani.”
I nodded my head, and she gave me
that “you are stupid look” the British give
Americans.

SECOND CHAT ANSWER
We are sitting along the road, cars are
passing by at around 90 kilometers per hour
or maybe 60 miles per hours. It is hot and
about 10:00 in the morning. I am being nice
and making conversation. The girls is going to Koh Pha
Ngan where I was, and they have the Full Moon Party.
The island and beach is very nice, and
that seem like a good beach to return to
and does not seem stupid. The beach at Hat Rin Nok on
Koh Pha Ngan is one of the best Sun-bathing beaches
I have encountered. NOTE: It has dry sand, while
the others have to deal with wet sand from the ocean
tides.

I think anywhere a person goes is intelligent,
and if they ask how to get there, or questions
about the destination. I feel it my civic duty to be kind
and help, and very bad manners to assume they should
know already.

TAKING THE PISS
This is British Humor, and a British Slang.
It means, and bear with me. I am still in the learning phase,
and need to keep testing it in normal conversation
for veracity. But it means in simplest terms.
To make fun of person.

In more complicated terms
it is expands into a semi-deceptive stage where
you pretend to be or think something to draw people
in the same conversation to make fun of the person
that does not understand. It is bridging on patronizing
someone.

You have to be very careful with the British because it
can be a subconscious thing, and they do as second
nature or in other words... ALL the time.

SHE DID IT AGAIN
She gave me the attitude again,

I asked the specific question again.,
“Which dock does the boat leave from to go
to Ko Lanta?”
She looks down, and shakes her head.
“Surat Thani.”
I nodded my head, and she gave me
that you another “you are stupid” look the
British give Americans.

OK....
For you readers. This is confusing.
The first week or two in Thailand it is confusing.
This girl had been all over Thailand and making
her second visit to Koh Pha Ngan.

Surat Thani is on the wrong coast.
You cannot catch a boat from
Surat Thani to Ko Lanta.
And if you are going by mini-van it still is
the far away.

I do not think making a mistake or being confused
is bad. In fact. Probably my normal way of being.
But to make fun of people is bad manners.
She was totally confused, and then treating
me like a stupid American.
ADVISER: Careful.

FROM MY EXPERIENCE
In my long mental list of memories.
What happens when a bus break down.
We stand in the road.
ALL the passing buses want to stop.
Soon another bus will stop.
They collect a second fare.
We now pay two fares. And stand in the aisle
the whole trip. I am explaining this to the Farang
and they are not responding.

I then say.
THUMBING A RIDE IS BETTER
I approximate we are one hour from Had Yai
and there is a pick-up truck passing every
couple of minutes. People like to pick up foreign
people with backpacks and give them rides.
It is hot, and I want to ride in the back of truck
and wave at other cars.

THUMBING TO HAD YAI
2 Austrians and 1 American.
We all three put our thumbs out.
5 minutes tops, and we had a ride.

THE UNKNOWN FOREIGN GIRL
She ask meekly.
Do you think there is room for me?
I looked at her again expressionless
for the 3rd time. Put on my best stupid look,
and took a picture of her waiting as we drove away.
I guess, what goes around comes around.

IN THE HANDS OF BUDDHA
Hitchhiking is fun.
You meet generous and happy people.
They are performing an act of random kindness.

Our driver also gave him 200 Baht.
My heart almost stopped. I have never seen
a Bus driver feel and guilt or conscious.
Speaks highly of Thailand.

In Thailand you use your left hand or THUMB
and not your right hand. They drive on the left
side of the road and opposite of the USA.
It works the same, and the lottery of random
cars or trucks that pick you up is the same.

An older smiling couple, between 50-60 stop.
I feel no bad vibes, and think we are very lucky.
The car is classic.
Looking around, I am trying to determine the
brand or company. I feel like I am in a Ford Falcon
or maybe an old Dodge. I never did discover
the manufacturer of this classic car.

The male pilot and female co-pilot are in front.
The dash had a non-functional tachometer.
A non-functional speedometer. A cassette
tape player, and the bottom of the steering
column is wrapped with rags. Looked like a
botched job of hot wiring the car.

The pilot is pointing the vehicle at the corners.
Both hands firmly and lightly on the wheel.
It was a vintage car, and in the past before rack
and pinion steering there was a looseness in the
steer, and they called that “Play.”
There was a lot of “Play” in the steering.

We are passing all the other cars.... (All)
The cloth roof starts to come down, or lower it
self into cruising speed. The glue that held the lining
to the roof, was no longer holding, and our seat
room became smaller and smaller. I am in Hobo
Travel Heaven. This is adventure. Three foreign
people in the back seat of a car. Speeding
down the highway and hugging the curves for
stability and to test the handling of the suspension.
I am thinking,
“How do you say car shocks in the Thai language?”
I am trying to tell Monica.
“He is driving great, this car has no shocks.”

We are huddled in the back seat.
Looking between the 2 bucket seats toward
the oncoming highway. It’s a classic travel
moment. The car has a little shimming. A little
vibrations, and certain level of constant noise.
The dash is covered with some soft padded
material. This is the Thailand equivalent of the
of an American Stereotype. I am looking for
Fuzzy Dice hanging from the rear-view mirror.

No Fuzzy Dice, but better.
In the center of the Dash in the location where
a person that understands the stereotype would
place his can of beer is a small statue. It has piece
of black electrical tape that is NOT holding it to
the Dash. It is slowly moving either left or right.
It is a small Buddha Statue.

I slowly go into my mind, and have began to paint
and extremely specific mental picture to preserve
for future story telling. Time has slowed down as
I look at the statue. Monica in the middle between
Thomas and me is in the same slower time warp.
The little fat Buddha is moving. It is slowly vibrating
to the right, and not facing straight ahead.

WORLD ORDER
The driver feels the cosmic change, and strategically
re-adjusts the Buddha to proper Karma levels.
I give a huge smile to Monica.
“In the USA, I would say we are in the
Hands of Jesus.”
I then follow up with,
“We are in the Hands of Buddha.”

I BE SERIOUS
In Thailand you start to think in short sentences.
Sorry. It is the way they talk.
But I am now even more relaxed.
It is obvious that the driver has a religious
faith and a personal respect for his faith.
People can make fun, and joke about the world
religions, but sometime you need to feel safe.

We are in a car with 2 people that stopped
in the middle of Thailand to give us a ride.
There is no way to communicate, and we have
to trust them and keep saying “Had Yai.”
There is an element of danger.
It is easy to minimize it after the trip,
but when you are in the back seat you think,
“I hope all is good...”

So the man reaches for the Buddha.
We are in the trusting our lives to a man that
believes in the “Hands of Buddha.”
He could have reached for a Beer, the
Stereo Volume, or started to search for
a wad of rice wrapped in a leaves.
It did make us feel safer.

HAD YAI
Quite excellent.
We arrive in Had Yai and they take
us directly to a tour company that sells trips
to Ko Lanta. He says we have to go to Krabi.
I am happy, but my research has lead me to believe
there is no reason for me to go to Krabi. It would
be better to stop at a city close to Ko Lanta
because it another 50 Miles/ Kilometers before
Krabi. I am now planning to go to Ko Lanta and have
decided to change my plans.

Monica, Thomas and me will go to Ko Lanta.
Krabi is off our destination list.

NO CHOICE WALKING
I put on my backpack, and load up to walk.
Monica and Thomas are still talking with the
travel agent. I have made the 1 second judgement
call and are ready to live or die with my decision.
“The guy is full of bullshit.”
I say to them,
“Come on,”
The do not know what to do, and we
are in the middle of a large busy, and too
noisy city. I am absolutely positive where I am
because I was here a week earlier.
I do not wish to compare notes, and discuss
the worldly options. I want to go to another
Travel Agent. It is only 2 blocks. Very close
and I know they will follow me that far without
a mutiny.

BACK AT THE CATHAY HOTEL
I stayed in this Hotel, and girl with the nickname
“Boy”, that looks nothing at all like a boy runs
the travel agency. Just a week ago I was doing
a group flirt and tease thing with the 4 women
that work there, and knew they were safe.

KO LANTA
“No today,”
Koh Lanta,
“Maybe tomorrow,”
I then say,
“Trang?”
She says,
“Ko Lanta tomorrow,”
I am waiting for her to shift mental gears.
I am about to say Trang again, when she
says to us,
“Wait, yes today.”
Yes to what?
Koh Lanta is still on the plate.
She knows we are determined to land or
arrive close to Ko Lanta so is starting to say
yes.

I have a lot of travel time under-belt, and I
really have no use for the word “NO.”
The word seem to turn into “YES” a lot.
When you apply the proper level of pressure.
Plus I am a big guy.

BOY to the rescue.
She is the brains of the operation and
arrives from who knows where to save
the day, and pull the proper strings.
We pay Baht and a Mini-Van arrives
at the entrance. I say a few innuendoes to Boy
that is definitely not a boy, and we say goodbye.
They then take us to another
breeding ground for Mini-Vans and we move
our bags into another Mini-Van.

CONTENTMENT
Monica comes out of depression.
Thomas looks at me with a wow.
We forced blind chance to open the door.
We are going to make it.
All the way.
I did not think it possible.
So we are content, happy, and 3 Farang
tucked in the back of another Mini-Van.
I say to Thomas,
“Wonder where the No-Name girl is?”
Probably still on the road,
“Taking the Piss.”

Lots of time passes.
We make another transfer in Trang
to another Mini-Van. Make sure all this includes
the Boat trip, and we buy some water, and munchies.

The van takes us onto a car ferry
twice and we arrive at Ko Lanta.
We are instantly surrounded by wild groups
of excited Resort Managers.
100 BAHT or 2.50 USA for a room.
This sound quite excellent, and I am relying
on the advice of Thomas and Monica.
They have been studying Ko Lanta all day.

So we still follow the trip together and go
for the same resort. The man loads us up in
the back of a truck and the sky is threatening to
drop a bucket of water on our head. I do not
need that right now.

HEAVEN - HELL - AND THE IN BETWEEN
I started this dialogue out talking about purgatory
and I am sure some of you still want to remind me.
“What doe this have to do with Purgatory?”

DEFINITIONS

PURGATORY:
1. In certain Christian doctrines, a temporary state in
which the souls of those who have died in grace
must expiate their sins.
2. A place or condition of suffering, expiation, or remorse.
EXPIATE: To atone or make amends.
GRACE: The state of being protected by God.

WE ARE IN HEAVEN... Maybe
I was expecting this backpacker retreat.
A place where groups of backpacker came to
pay nothing and live dirt cheap. The owner of the Bungalows
has taken to a large property with a main entrance drive
that leads to the Resort. I has a large grouping of Bungalows
and a small fence or wind break around the property.
Located on the beach, it has every amenity that
a good tourist needs.

Satellite Color Television.
Free Kayaks to use. And mask fins
and Snorkel. A restaurant with a very large
selection or cuisine on the menu.
If you wish you can get a Thai Massage while
laying on the beach on a special bamboo decks specially
designed and constructed for the clientele.

RESORT LIFE
I enter my Bungalow for 100 Baht per night
(This is low season. Normal price maybe 700)
24 hour electricity, and a closet with 3 hangers.
This is does it. 3 Hangers in the closet and
I am positive I am in a high end resort. Only
a place that want to put STARS on their entrance
would have 3 hangers. We have bars of soap,
and towels, and a list of Resort Rules on the back of
the door.

PARADISE IS HELL
When you enter a new place you get a
natural high as you walk around exploring
the new destination. We was isolated, and alone.
In a resort where meals cost twice the cost of
a room, and it would take an hour to find another
place to eat, and probably cost the same.

A person with his wife, or girlfriends.
After working 60 hour weeks for months on
end would call this perfect. Quiet peaceful,
and great place for long walks on the beach.
This is low season, and we are on a deserted island.

MY TRAVELER PURGATORY
I am still in the grace for travelers.

But, I am sorry I complained about the Ideal
traveler Guesthouse with the Rats. I will try to
appreciate that their was lots of people and there
is a squat toilet. I must stay here for 2 days
a remember every time I think of real life in the
world and how this place reminds me of that former
life.

I do wish to thank that little Buddha on the car dash
for the experiences of Paradise.

I had 2 days, and 2 nights of solitude
and plenty of time to type this newsletter.
“Planning the escape.”
Life outside the resort,
and what they do not tell you?

Blurb...
REALITY SHOWS
I met a girl from a reality show a couple
of weeks ago. That is in the next issue.
This “Reality Story” got in the way, and
I am telling it first.

Crossing Border - Taxis - Broken Van - Hitch a Rice
http://www.hoboguide.com/079thailandmalaysia06.shtml
Boy Travel Agent - Ride to Ko Lanta - Car Ferry
http://www.hoboguide.com/079thailandmalaysia07.shtml
Ko Lanta Beach Resort and Bungalows
Traveler Purgatory
http://www.hoboguide.com/079thailandmalaysia09.shtml

Just another day in Paradise!
PLAN YOUR ESCAPE...
Be a Hobo, and leave your mark.

X     Hobotraveler.com was HERE!

Life is good.
The Hobotraveler.com

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
Article written by Andy the Hobotraveler.com
On year 5 of Hobo trip around the world.
Budget Travel, Jobs, and Adventure, etc
Subscribe to Free Newsletter at:
http://www.hobotraveler.com/
You may publish this article for Free
on the internet If this box stays attached.
<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ TODAY’S TRAVEL TIPS

AIR DRY CLOTHES FAST

As a traveler or tourist there are times
when we need to dry clothes fast so we
can either wear them or pack them.

The laundry brings them back wet,
or
you only have 1 shirt, 1 pair pants, etc.

Whatever the reason.
Here is a way to dry your clothes faster
by AIR... Not a electric or gas dryer.

I hope this induces some of you people
that think it is fashionable to wear the same
clothes every day to wash your clothes.
This is not a hint.
You stink.

I hand wash my clothes 80 percent of the time
and only pay when I verifiable see a wash machine and
normal machine dryer.

THIS IS EASY
I am not very experienced with hand washing
and drying clothes but I am on the learn as you
go program, and welcome other tips.

DRYING
The process of drying your clothes is about getting
the water out of you clothes. Whether you wring off your clothes
or it can evaporate.

WRINGING
I hate wringing my clothes, and consider it
a necessary evil. I would prefer to wash them
and just hang them up. But the better the wringing
job the less water, and the quicker they dry.

This TIP is about wringing.

WRAP IN TOWEL OR SHEET
If you wish to really give that extreme wringing
of you clothes. First do the normal wringing.
Then take a towel and place on the floor.
Hopefully the towel or sheet of the Hotel.
Lay your clothes on towel.
Roll the towel into a bundle lengthwise.

ABSORPTION
You are trying to get the towels or material
to absorb the water out of your clothes.

FOOT WORK
I have found that my foot on one end,
and my two hands on the other end of the
towel or clothes and I get some better wringing
actions. So step on one end to hold it, and
then start twisting with your two hands.

PHOTO EXPLANATION
http://www.hoboguide.com/079thailandmalaysia10.shtml

AIR DRY
You have greatly shortened the dry time.
Now you need a breeze.
The wind and sun is the best, but
do they not always cooperate.

So... FANS
Clothes dry faster in cold dry aired climates
than in Tropical climates with high humidity.
Fortunately a fan is almost always near.

CEILING FANS
The big type in the center of the ceiling.
Construct or hang a line directly below the fan.

FLOOR FANS
A normal fan on floor, or sitting on a dresser, nightstand
or even attached to the wall are good.
But you still need to hang the clothesline directly in
front of the fan.

UNDERWEAR SPEED DRY
Socks and underwear....Maybe T-shirt.
I carry clothe pins, and hook them directly ON
the fan. Nothing faster.

NO FAN
I advise you NOT to wash clothes in places
without a fan. If you cannot wait or are not
able to hang your clothes outside. The room
is not the place. They will dry slowly, but you
will have a mildew smell if you are not careful.
Better to wait.

ALTERNATIVES
Buy a new shirt or pants.

Just another day in Paradise!
PLAN YOUR ESCAPE...
Be a Hobo, and leave your mark.

X     Hobotraveler.com was HERE!

Life is good.
The Hobotraveler.com

As always, these are suggestions. Please realize I am
giving guidance, and there are always other opinions.
“One mans paradise, is another mans hell”
This way we do not all go to the same place.

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
Article written by Andy the Hobotraveler.com
On year 5 of Hobo trip around the world.
Budget Travel, Jobs, and Adventure, etc
Subscribe to Free Newsletter at:
http://www.hobotraveler.com/
You may publish this article for Free
on the internet If this box stays attached.
<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ EXTREME HOBO TRAVEL

DENNIS & SCOTT BIKE AROUND THE WORLD
Hello,
Think there is gossip on the page.
Not sure how Dennis and Scott are getting along?
Scott in MY opinion is thinking too large.
Needs to take it one day at a time,
and one small trip at a time, plus eat ice cream.
Always make me feel better.
CHECK out the story...The pain in ass part of
travel is kicking in for him.
http://www.theargonauts.com/argonauts/dennis_scott/archive.shtml

-------------------------------------------------------------

TODAY’S TIP FROM THE
“Peanut Gallery”
Fun tips - Here's a little tip from me, to you,
as an experienced traveler.

Ceiling fans resemble helicopter.
Use your imagination when bored.

TRAVEL JOKES NEWSLETTER
SUBSCRIBE: Send BLANK or Empty e-mail to
REMOVE THE SPACES
travelhumor-subscribe  @  topica.com

CLICK HERE FOR CARTOONS AND JOKES
http://www.hobotraveler.com/viralvistingfriend.htm
http://www.hobotraveler.com/viralcheaperairfaresawoff.htm
http://www.hobotraveler.com/virallookingfortravelagent.htm


-------------------------------------------------------------

~   HOBO QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
Just hit reply to this e-mail and you can send a question
directly to me... Andy the HoboTraveler.com

QUESTION:
Hi there,
Last week you mentioned your neck purse.
For a woman, how would this work?
I like the idea very much.
I also mentioned your advice leads me to have to
change my hiding place in the hotel room for
my passport....
How about the hem of the window curtains?
I dont want to take it in the streets at border of
Mex. passports are in high demand I have heard.
Regards, yanngo of Mexico.

ANSWER:
I admit for women the neck pouch money holder
could be uncomfortable.

I am RECOMMENDING to everyone that it is
better to sew in extra pockets to one or all
your pants. Where these specific pants between
destinations,

Money Belts and Neck Purse can be sat down
and forgot. Hard to lose your pants....

Passports sell from 300-2000 dollars USA
on the Black Market.

To me temptation is always the key word.
Am I tempting the thief,
Am I tempted to place something down and
the have elected to have the possibility of losing
the thing of value.
Money Belts, Umbrella, Dictionaries, Maps etc.

Thanks
Andy the HoboTraveler.com

MY QUESTION
When is HIGH tourist season in
INDONESIA - PHILIPPINES?
This would help me to plan my future.

-------------------------------------------------------------

~   HOBO GOSSIP and/or Jaded Remarks

LEARNING LANGUAGES - Everyone goes and learns
Spanish. Chinese is huge, but nobody seems to learn Chinese?
I think we always take the easy road.

TRY NEW FOODS - I really have no desire to try new foods.
Sound like random chance of getting something good to eat.
Maybe once a month.

TOURIST RESTAURANTS - I see lots of people all the time
in restaurants that serve western food like pizza and
hamburgers. I know, because I am their with them....

-------------------------------------------------------------

"Thank you, Lord, for thinkin'
'bout me. I'm alive and doin' fine."
I’m alive and doing fine.‘
Song by: Five Man Electrical Band

 

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