Friday, November 25, 2005
I had already decided to go straight to Nong Khai rather that stop over in Bangkok. This sounded like a good idea. Little did I know that it would take 22.75 hours from Lime Street to the check in desk at Mutmee Guest House in Nong Khai.
It all started at 09:15 on 23rd November with an 11 pounds 70p return to Manchester Airport. Having succesfully navigated the Fast Track Ticket machine and necking a double Espressso the train left on time.
I only really noticed the fog about St. Helens, it didn't really click until I saw the depatures board. Every other plane, apart from mine to Amsterdam and another to Paris, both Fokker 70's, were on time, but obviously the Fokker has problems with fog that other planes don't. So a 3 hour delay.
Terminal 2 really is the pits one bar - a pseudo french affair "Bar des Voyageurs" staffed entirely by sultry east european staff with an attitude to boot. Kilkenny was the least obnoxious brew at 2 pounds 99 a pint.
The flight eventually departed at about 15:40 which at least meant only two hours in Schipol.
The flight to BKK left on time. The internet check in came up trumps. I reserved seat 21H by the emergency exit with acres of legroom. Thank you "seat finder". Unfortuntely a rather large dutch man had.reserved seat 21I so what I gained in one direction I lost in the other.
The plane landed at Don Muang at 12.07 on Thursday 24th November. I now had a four hour+ wait for the Air Asia flight to Nong Khai.
In the meantime I reaquainted myself with Beer Chang and had a good pork with holy basil and rice at the Silom Village Restaurant.
Air Asia flight left eventually at 17:00 getting to Nong Khai 45 minutes later than scheduled at 18:00. From here a quick 100 baht minibus to Mutmee Guest House (Tickets from Limousine Service Counter by exit to airport)
Had a reservation at Mutmee and checked in to my sigle room at 130baht (less than 2 quid) a night. Was increaddibly tired now but wanted to stay awake until about 22:00. Forced a couple of Beer Chang down and had a large fresh water fish with a coconut cream and chilli sauce. Excellent.
Mutmeee is all it promised to be. A very relaxed guest house with lovly gardens overlooking the Mekong River.
Beakfast today consisted of and omelette and a Laos Coffee.
I am now going to hire a bike and cycle along the Mekong for a few hours then take a short river cruise tonight.