On November 4th Fred the bike is embarking on a six month journey across Southeast Asia. Starting in Singapore, Fred plans to make his way up the west coast of Malaysia, across Thailand, Cambodia, up through Vietnam and into Laos. After that... who knows? Fred invites you to follow him through his adventure. Any advice from fellow travelers is always welcome.

Sunday, November 30, 2008


Total Distance:188.52
Total Time:10h53m11s
Average Speed:17.3km/h
Maximum Speed:50.5km/h
Total Distance So Far:796.19km

Before I begin, I keep meaning to tell you, I haven't been including any distance not travelled by bike nor the distance spent travelling around places on bike in a leisurely fashion. I feel this would "fudge" the numbers, so to speak.
Let me start by saying today was a far less successful day than those past. I still love Thailand and, just to clarify, do not hold anything that happened upon Thailand or the people who reside here. The first 75km of today's ride was non-stop rain. We're not talking a little mist either. It was a full on down pore. That alone wasn't actually that bad. It was sort of a nice break from the blistering heat. It was rather rainy though, which is my least favorite of conditions to ride in. It makes it like you are constantly going uphill. I was, once again chased by many dogs today. I think I'm going to invest in a water pistol and fill it with bleach or something to spray in their eyes. I know it sounds cruel, but some of them are honestly going in for the kill. The worst thing that happened today, and I do feel really bad about it despite my recently acquired distaste for the Canine kind, I ran over a dog. If all dogs go to heaven, I'm surely going to hell. He was just a little guy too. I didn't kill him, at least I don't think I did. He did get up and stagger off yelping after. I was trying to read a road sign, which can be difficult as the majority of them are in Thai, and I didn't even see him there. The last bad thing that happened was that I got lost. Perhaps it was my punishment for running down Benji. The ride from Trang to Krabi should really have only been about 139km. I didn't actually want to stay in the town, but in one of the places down by the beach. I searched high and low and could find no such places. I know they exist. I have a friend staying in one as we speak. I guess I'm just dense. It added at least an extra 2 hours to today's ride. Eventually I gave up and stayed in town, which turned out to be pretty cool. At least now I know I can do a 190km day.
Last night I stayed in Trang, where my problems with the language barrier continued. It was a pretty boring place. Sometimes the worst part of a bike tour can be where you end up stopping. Everyone there goes to bed at 8pm. Not very fun when you don't arrive until mid-afternoon. Krabi is much better. There's more tourists who come here, so it's a little easier finding people who speak English. I'm going to try to learn some Thai while I here. At least the basics, like how to order food and ask where a hotel is.
I think I will be here a couple of days. I can't linger too long though, as you only receive a 30 day visa upon entering Thailand. I'm going to do Thailand in two shots. One now (the South) and one after leaving Laos (the North). Still it's a long way to the Cambodian border, so I can't dilly-dally.


saysomethinginappropriate said...

I've read about the dog thing on other Cycle blogs ... I didn't realize it was such a major problem.

Take that Benji!

Anonymous said...

Hey Gabrielle, I read of your canine encounters with great smypathy. I've been chased a bunch of times and bitten once. I too have thought of bleach filled squirt guns or other such devises - I too have accidently run over a small dog that was part of a pack attacking me. I felt really bad for the dog, who got up and ran off - and I've worried about what happened to him since (it's been years now). An air horn like they blast at football games could work. Dogs are a problem. Enjoying your blog. Thanks. David