Southeast Asia Journal Numbers Three and Four


Hello all,
Well I have arrived at Surat Thani, a smaller town in Thailand that was upgraded to a city just as I drove over the bridge.  I think I put them over the population limit into a city.  But in case you’re not getting my humor; this place is called a town, but the only reason that’s the case is because the only tall buildings here are the four-story apartment complexes on the tops of the 7-11’s.  There’s plenty of people here to call it a city.  It is just small with respect to the idea that they are all just crammed into about 20-30 city blocks.  It’s pretty weird.  Getting here, my contact drove me through miles and miles of rice patties, sunken bogs and palm farms that stretched farther than you could see in any direction.

Bad news: I just mailed a box back home containing my cowboy hat, raincoat and rainshock for my tent… I thought that I had seen the last of the rain.  And, as it turns out, it’s the rainy season here in south Thailand.  What luck?!

Journal Four:
Good news:  I start my new job tomorrow and this town seems really great.  I just spent the last few hours getting lost throughout the backstreets and underground markets and the people are really wonderful.  They are all out in the street celebrating the new year playing music and dancing and having a great time.  I think that I will have a great time here.

More bad news:  I suppose I will be putting off cycling for a bit longer.  Since I accepted the job teaching science in a private institution here, I have signed a contract that will have me working until at least late February.  So hopefully at that point I will have enough money to extend my stay, cycle throughout the five countries I originally intended to cycle.  I will make it happen, folks, I promise.  Cycling in strange and foreign countries is one of the things I do best.

More good news:  My new apartment is pretty nice.  I have been put up in a very nice place with just about all I need to get by.  There’s no pool like the luxury unit I just moved from this morning, but I made sure to tell the manager there that I will be moving back in if I get a job in Bangkok after I have traveled a bit and finished this contract.  It was pretty sweet: workout gym, pool, great views of the city, nice neighbors.  Here is not so bad.  I feel a bit spoiled having come from the lap of cheap luxury.  But I will wait to form my final opinion until I have looked around and made sure that this is the place that I  want.

Though, in all fairness, there are several pools, workout gyms great sights and markets are all over the places throughout town.  So perhaps it’s not so bad that they are not all located right inside my apartment.  It just means that I will have to get out more and go check them out.  The sunset from out the back window of this apartment is really something.  There are mixes of deep maroons and browns — an unexpected change from sunsets elsewhere int he world.  I have even heard that there is an island in the middle of the river that circles town with a run/walk lane, several soccer fields, workout machines and great spots to relax.  I think I am going to like it here.

My amazing sunset

Well, that’s where I am at the moment.  Tonight, I will be uploading more photos to the ones that I added last night.  I spent the morning breaking into an empty apartment on the top floor of my apt building to get the sunrise over the city.  I had to climb out onto a ledge looking down over 9 stories of a drop to get the photos that I will be loading up tonight, so I hope that you all appreciate what I had to go through to get these for you!!  comments welcome!

Cheers until next time.

C.O.

P.s. Just in case you still don’t know the address to the photos, it’s picasaweb.google.com/shaggamaru

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