Posts Tagged With: Transportation and Logistics

The Road to Penang

Wahoo! Nothing like a nine-hour bus ride to occupy your day.  Although travel days are different in a way because there’s no way of knowing what your destination brings, it usually turns tedious pretty fast.  Our bus driver was late because of traffic (excusable) but had to be called back to the drop-off point because he had taken off without us, his four passengers, in the back!  Oh man.  Our driver, captain Taz, as he introduced himself, was dressed for a day of golfing in short pants, long socks and a golfing tee and hat.  Hmmm? I didn’t ask.  Soon after we left it was clear he was an AWFUL driver with a lead foot and shitty attitude behind the wheel, I wedged myself between a bunch of backpacks in the backseat and hoped they wouldn’t fall on me – which they did – eventually.  Then. The traffic.  OH MY GOD. It was some of the worst traffic I’ve ever seen, and we inched along the road, lurching forward with every stop. Only my music made it bearable, and I watched the charge slowly decline and prayed the tunes would hold out till we got there. They didn’t.  Our minivan held four other passengers besides Micheline and I, and after three hours we were all hungry and desperately had to pee!  We asked Captain Taz to stop, and he replied that he would but he would keep the van inching along in traffic and we would have to run and catch up.  What? So we ALL ran out when the door opened, I guess he realized he would have some explaining to do with an empty van and no passengers, so he stopped for us reluctantly.  I peed in some Muslim guys backyard (oops sorry!) and we stopped at a roadside stand to buy fruit (some passengers were not as prepared as us with our loaf of white bread and peanut butter) and ran back to the torture device that was our ride.
 
 The time slowly passed as we alternated between breakneck speed and painfully slow jerkiness, finally we came to a roadside stop where we were the ONLY ladies with our hair uncovered, this was a sight for the rest of the Muslims around, who were lovely and friendly and fascinated by us, especially by Micheline’s blonde hair!  We got back on the road, and our driver told us he “didn’t know” how long it would take for us to get there….lol. We finally arrived around 8pm and were recommended to a guesthouse by our golfer/driver/captain. Since we were too tired to object and the guesthouse looked clean and there was a sweet mural on the wall, we paid the 35 Ringgits ($11.50 CAD) and dumped our stuff, happy to finally be in Penang.  

 
We dumped our stuff and wandered around a bit, since we were in the heart of Chinatown there was a sweet night market serving all kinds of food and drink, so I sat down with a plate of noodles and we had watermelon shakes and happily went to bed after walking a bit and realizing there’s not much nightlife around!  
 
Advertisements
Categories: Malaysia | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

En Route to BKK – Part Two

Ok so we left off at Heathrow, and my flight from London took off in a reasonable time, THAI Airlines was the BEST flight I have ever taken in my life – and it was an 11 hour long haul, so thats saying a lot.  Free booze, hot towels, extra empty seat beside me so i could take a nap (kinda) and a lovely friendly Thai girl beside me, great food (3 meals!!) and an endless array of movies and TV shows. I cant believe Im saying this but I walked off the plane totally refreshed!

As I walked off the plane and into the Bangkok airport, a secret smile crept over my face.  Here I was, totally alone in a place I had never been before, didint know a soul.  I felt compeletely capable, at peace and wondfully…alone.  I have a strong belief that we are our own best comapny, being comfortable in your own solitary presence is sometimes the best company you can have.  I felt that way walking off the plane.  It was amazing.

And then….my bag did not show up in the luggage.  I didn’t panic, i thought something like this migjt happen as I only had an hour to connect to my flight at Heathrow.  I went to the baggage are and they were very sweet, filing a report and saying it would show up on the next plane, to go to my hotel and they would send it to me.

After a quick phone call home to say I was here in one piece, I sought out my guide who was supposed to meet me at the airport…..but there was no sign of them so i trusted my luck and hopped in a cab.  The Thai phrases he kept trying to teach  me probably could have stuck if I hadn’t felt the whole time I was going to puke on account of his awful driving….I arrived feeling sick and disoriented – 8am Thai time, 9pm Toronto time.

I slept for a few hours and finally ended up meeting my guide Nikki who had just missed me at the airport. she informed me i was the first to arrive so i had a few days to explore before everyone else got there. Perfect!

to be continued….

Categories: In the Air, Thailand | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Blog at WordPress.com.