Tuesday 30 October 2012

October 30 - Travel to Sukhothai

Ayutthaya had been a good start to Thailand, it helped put some of the Thai history into context. My next destination Sukhothai was going to add to that. Sukhothai was capital of a kingdom which predated Ayutthaya, in fact as Sukhothai waned, Ayutthaya grew in strength and importance. So in effect I was going backward in time.
I had organised to catch the bus to modern Sukhothai through my hotel. I paid a premium price, but they provided transport to the bus station which was on the main highway, several Km from town. A small van picked myself and several others up and we had gone about 200 metres when I began to have doubts. "Where was my passport?". I checked pockets and bags and decided that I must have left it in my room. I attracted the drivers attention and asked him to turn around. The other passengers must have thought that I was an idiot. Back at the hotel I suggested that the driver continue to the bus stop, I didn't want to make the other passengers miss the bus, but they all insisted on waiting, that was very kind of them.
The passport was in the room still, along with money belt and wallet. I had put them aside as I packed saying that they were important and needed to be carried on me. I had then taken a shower and threw the wet towel over the valuables thus hiding them. In over 25 years of independent travel that is the third time that I have left a passport or valuables behind. Fortunately each time I have realised quickly and recovered them.
Anyway we made it to the bus station with plenty of spare time.
The bus trip was uneventful but longer than I had expected, close to 6 hours. In Sukhothai I picked a place out of the Lonely Planet guide and took a motorbike there. It was nice, had a pool, which was empty as it was being repaired and I was quite happy to stay there.
I have mentioned my broken toe earlier. At this stage I was in a fair bit of pain and walking with difficulty. I did a duck walk as I found that pointing my right foot to the right was bearable when I stepped on it. I must have looked like a cripple.
So I walked into the main town to have something to eat and a look around. There was an annual "fair" on and I took some time to have a look around. A variety of stalls selling cheap clothing, plenty of stalls selling food and drink of various kinds, sideshows of the pop the ball in the clowns mouth variety and pop 3 balloons with 3 darts to win a prize and a stall with what looked like Thai Buddhist Priests selling tickets to compete for prizes. I thought that Buddhists were not allowed to accept money as offerings. You live and learn.
After that sojourn I had a meal followed by a massage. The meal was unsatisfactory as it was described as a noodle soup. There was not a single noodle in the soup and basically I ended up with a vegetable soup. I reasoned that I probably needed the healthy food. The massage was also a bit of a worry as I was constantly on edge in case my broken toe was mistreated.
That basically ended the night for me.
The Bludger went to sleep. He does that a lot.

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