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Current Location : Golden Triangle area Chiang Khong, Thailand – Laos border, Thailand (google map)
Last entry date : 24/Jan/09

Tranquil fishing village at Songkla’s Ko Yo island

06/Jan/09 to 12/Jan/09

Time do fly… after a good 4 months break in France with the family, I’m back in Johor Bahru, Malaysia to be with my iron horse, Kuda (the same loyal one). Three tries on the start button and it started humming again… just the way I like it. The plan for this 2nd stage journey remains the same ie just like the 1st stage – no real plan, expect for a rough itinerary described on map and hoping to arrive in Melbourne, Australia by March. This seems a reasonable schedule as I got my visas ready for the upcoming countries, and have extended the duration of the important Carnet de Passage (so Australia could let the bike in). There’s a bit of unknown on the passage from into Kalimantan, Borneo, however will worry about this later.

First surprise (or dilemma) encountered – could not understand how my helmet got so messy ! I had “forgotten” to wash it after 3-1/2 months on the road, and left it in a humid corner for 4 months – was enough for creepy microbes I picked up along the Silkroad or anywhere in between to thrive. This explains why my head was terribly itchy last July. Nice colours, but it’s nonetheless disgusting. Can’t dip my head in that, I had no choice but to wash it, and the sun’s UV did the rest.

With my helmet smelling fresh, Chris Leow, a good friend from childhood accompanied me out of JB town to kick off this 2nd stage. The bike’s lighter this time around since I’m no longer carrying silly things thousands of km like the DVDs I never watched, the 12v transformer I never used, etc. For a 1st ride I clocked up 600km on 07/Jan to arrive in Penang. Earned stiff shoulders and burned tyres. Clement & Helen, 2 easy-going-take-it-easy-bikers who have been traveling SE Asia, were waiting for me at the Old Penang Guesthouse. Guess what ?? Clement has been to Gattieres !! The next day, we were joined by another long distance biker Bjorn, who came into Malaysia to do his Thai visa run. I have known Bjorn for a while now, and he has taken a similar trail across Central Asia into S.E.Asia. Still its rare to see a tiny congregation of 4 similar travel bikes standing side by side here in Penang.

Two days later – after some great Penang food, and laughs – I rode up to Kuala Kedah with Clement & Helen, who wanted to return to their “base” on the tranquil island of Langkawi. Bjorn later joined me there and both of us decided to make the crossing into the Southern Thailand town of Songkla that evening. We both are not new to night rides. Soon in Thailand, it was the dogs walking the streets that were the most dangerous, day or night. A couple of police road checks here and there but they were not interested in bikers. By chance that evening, I met up with Daniel, a german man whom I had met in Krabi town last year. The next day, he brought us around to eat some local delicious Songkla noodles and a visit to the nearby fishing community on Ko Yo island. It seems life is calm and simple on this island. Nice to get a chance to see this rural side of Thailand, the welcome and the smiles the Thais give out so easily.

And to my travelling biker friends (Clement, Helen & Bjorn), see you soon somewhere.

11 Responses to « Back on the road again – heading north to do the Thailand, Laos & Cambodia loop  »

  1. beautifull photos, I love the ones with the fishing houses…and I found the 4th puppy!! Safe trip mon chéri. Love, Lydia

  2. Siew Hoon & Victoria24 January 2009 à 12:43 pm

    Hi- Sheen,
    Interesting update & beautiful photos ! Nice hearing fr. you again. Happy Chinese New Year to you,where ever you are. Take care.

    Siew Hoon.

  3. Hi Sheen,
    Awesome pictures. I’m glad you’re O.K. and enjoying the sight seeing. Watch what you eat, if not, you might end up like me with too much wind in the stomach, I made my Assam Fish too spicy, I guess. Leaving today for Batu Pahat, still need to finish packing.
    Good Luck.

  4. Hey Sheen, great blog. I’ll be starting the SE Asia loop on 6 Feb from Singapore and riding through Malaysia, Thailand, Laos and Cambodia before flying from Bangkok to Kathmandu in mid March. Any chance we can meet on the way? Not sure what your itinerary is. Rob

  5. tres bel article daddy! les photos sont magnifiques 🙂
    je te fais un gros bisou

  6. Salut Sheen,

    Nouvelle destination et toujours de très belles photos.
    Profite bien de ta nouvelle aventure, je te prépare un bon programme à ton retour…

  7. Hi sheen.
    very nice pictures! Hope you enjoy this second part of your trip, it seems very interesting when we see your blog and these amazing landscapes on pictures!
    See you in France

  8. Coucou Dada, je te souhaite une tres bonne annee. On pense a toi ici!

  9. hi sheen,
    it is nice to see that you are on the road again. i love reading your blogs and seeing pictures. also your travel gives me idea about my future rtw travel. by the way, it is a cleaver thing to wear bright jacket. visibility is important when you are riding.

    so, i hope to you a safe journey again. and wish to see you in may on my way to morocco, if i finish repearing the system and completing the experiments.. i am really working hard for it.

    greatings from turkiye.

  10. annie jeanmichel erwan gwen31 January 2009 à 8:49 am

    bonjour sheen
    de retour sur ta moto avec de nouvelles aventures humaines et de merveilleux paysages. cntinue a nous faire rever et profite bien de ces quelques mois d escapade. a dans 15 jours c est a mon tour de voyager et de m envoler vers le vietnam
    biz annie

  11. Salut Sheen,
    Me voilà régulièrement sur ton blog pour suivre la suite de tes aventures… rien n’a changé, tes photos sont toujours aussi jolies.
    J’ai hâte de voir la suite.
    Et Bonne Année !!!
    Bizzzz

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