Posts Tagged With: buses

OVERLAND TO RANTHAMBORE NATIONAL PARK

We’re on the road again. And Ranvir  points out  how the truck drivers decorate their trucks.The tassels and plumes and artificial flowers are a tradition among drivers. If another driver is assigned that truck, they don’t remove them.  I’ve seen the passenger side, alternate driver, sitting cross-legged in the window. It is built into their genes to sit that way. Each of our  bus drivers has a helpful alternate.  He must apprentice for 4 to 5 years. Ranvir tells us that bus drivers get used to air-conditioning and during monsoon, they suffer terribly in their own homes without it.

We see this group of women and a boy in a small town. Colorful, always. One town we went through, the women had to cover their faces outside because of their in-laws, a stricter Muslim sect, but not as strict as those who require the black hijab that completely covers the face.

And, as always, you find the camel, or donkey treading the same road as these huge, fast buses and trucks. Pretty amazing that there are so few accidents.

Before we left for Ranthambore for another long five hour bumpy drive, we visited a museum with hunting and war weapons. They were all under glass and I didn’t take any photos. Killing instruments best forgotten anyway. This is probably out of sequence because I improperly divided my pictures while unloading.

I know we stopped at a McDonalds on one of the long drives and I was fascinated with this woman’s long, beautiful hair. Inside the restaurant was a group of women who were rewarded for taking skills classes of some sort. They were celebrating with a lunch at McDonalds, something none of them could afford on their own.

I have to cut this short and finish it tomorrow when we reach the Tiger Preserve at Ranthambore. I had good and bad news from my surgeon yesterday. My left shoulder rotator cuff cannot be repaired. I have to have a complete shoulder replacement. But, it can wait a year.  That is the good news.

Ciao

 

 

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EXCITING, PULSING BANGKOK

Do I even recognize the 14 year old I took with me to Thailand? After 16 days of a venerable, ancient, culture we were both changed. Mason, above, is my grandson and traveling partner. We squeezed in a lot of life during our 16 days. He is holding Flat Stanley against a waterfall in the Tawana Hotel, Bangkok on our first day. (I’ll explain Flat Stanley later.)

From our hotel, we set out for the flower and produce markets. We viewed the miasma of traffic, strange vehicles slipping past our bus window. Life swirls through the streets, shopping stalls crowd man and beast and machine for space. Its vibrant, exciting and such a contrast to suburban and big city USA.

We found Thai people, happy, friendly, clean, and a fascinating mix of old culture and new democracy. Third world, no doubt, but life is lived in the streets. Families run their shopping stalls, kids play around the street markets when not in school. Vendors eat on the street, socialize and nap in their stalls.


The snarl of wiring above this street reminds me a bit of India, yet you could plug in your computer, or phone chargers in any of our hotels.

Thai people love their flowers and you see them gracing their motorcycles, boats, buses, houses, temples-everything.

Fruits and vegetables and flowers are part of every celebration in Thailand. It was love at first sight.
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