Thursday, January 21, 2010

Backpackers unite

I arrived in Ayuthaya yesterday around 2:30pm. I dumped my bag in my room, got something to eat, checked email, and then did a whole lot of nothing for a couple of hours. I decided to grab a beer at the Streetlamp Restaurant and Bar (in the same building as my guesthouse) and ended up meeting Mark from the UK and Jorgen from Holland. Later we met Zach from Texas and the four of us hung out for the rest of the night. We were chatting and talking about our travels and our lives back home as we listened to live music. At one point, Jorgen got up and took over for the musician, so we got to hear him play and sing, too. After Mark and Jorgen called it a night, Zach and I played pool with some Thais before we also called it a night.

This morning the four of us met for breakfast. Mark and Jorgen were off to Kanchanaburi and Zach and I had just come from there, so we were giving them advice (and telling them how much they were going to love it!). It was my first opportunity to give other travelers info on a place (rather than being the one on the receiving end), so that was cool; I was glad that I was able to help them. Zach and I said goodbye to Mark and Jorgen and then we rented bikes so we could more easily see all of the different wats in Ayuthaya. Ayuthaya is a former capital of Thailand, so there are lots of them, but most are in ruins from when the Burmese conquered the city in 1767. Three wats in and we decided to take a break from wats for a bit and ride over to the Portuguese settlement. (Ayuthaya is basically an island and the Portuguese settlement is off the island.) That was the plan, but we never did find what we were looking for. It wasn't a wasted trip, though, because we got to see some gorgeous countryside. Also, we stopped for lunch at a place where no one spoke English, managed to order (Zach even using the phrase that he'd memorized - I'm a vegetarian), and I had the best bowl of noodles and chicken soup that I've had so far in Thailand.

Zach and I parted ways when we got back on the island, but just for a couple of hours. We're both checking email, showering, and taking naps before we meet up for dinner later. And there's been a minor change of plans - my first for awhile, so I figured it was time. :-) Rather than go to Lopburi, I'm going to go to Chiang Mai. The plan had always been to go to Chiang Mai, I'll just be going sooner than planned. I'll even have a travel partner for a couple of days because it's the same direction that Zach is heading. (I mentioned the "backpacker's trail" to ToadMama yesterday - so called because a lot of backpackers go to the same places - and this is a prime example of it in action.)

Also, in case you're wondering, I haven't uploaded pics in awhile. I still have the rest of Kanchanaburi plus all of Ayuthaya to upload. I've had free internet at my guesthouse, but the connection speed is ridiculously slow, so I haven't even bothered to try. Chiang Mai is a university town, though, so connections should be better and I'll be able to get all caught up.


  1. It's amazing that even on the other side of the world, you still get to meet up and travel with another American for a few days.

  2. Wow, that sounds like a GREAT day. And a travel partner. That really is very cool. I wish it were me though. (-:

  3. "holla" to my countryman, Jorgan! whatup, Dutchman!?

    tee hee, xoL