Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Tuesday 7th Feb, Fang. On the road, footloose and Malarone free

Well I'm feeling much better today, so it looks like it may well have been the Malarone. I got up with my appetite fully restored, and had a rather unpleasant breakfast of instant coffee and steamed white buns (a typical Northern Thai breakfast, apart from the coffee being instant).

Set off immediatly onto a 2km steep push, then an absolutely glorious but impossibly steep and twisty 10km descent, ears popping, struggling to a halt every few minutes to let my rims cool down from all the braking.

I descended through the orange groves stopping for a delicious bottle of freshly squeezed orange juice, then paused at a beautiful Wat, where I got chatting to the Singaporian English teacher, who introduced me to the head monk at the Temple. He spoke a bit of English and was keen to hear about Scotland and so he showed me around the temple and we chatted for an hour or so. He was astounded to hear how much money I earned. I still find it difficult talking about that, as the disparity between what I earn and what a rural Thai person earns is so vast.

I left a donation for the Wat, and he insisted on filling up my bag with delicious oranges and other fruit which I've been munching on throughout the morning.

I'm now taking a relaxing lunch break, before cycling another 20 or so miles this afternoon, where I'll decide whether to go for a super-strenous day to a beautiful Chineese village in the mountains with delicious tea, or whether to take the river boat to the City of Chiang Rai and chill out, or whether there's some other fascinating option to fill my last few days...

I am really appreciating being well again, and able to ride. I hope it lasts.

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