Krabs and Spiders
I began today feeling a little under the weather, why I am not sure. It could well have been my breakfast that my system found disagreeable. I had bangers and mash for breakfast. It was never my intention to have bangers and mash for breakfast, it was a linguistic error, but when the bangers and mash arrived I thought it looked palatable and I was hungry and so I accepted it without complaint.
The town where I had breakfast was Krabi, a town that for a reason quite beyond me is popular with tourists. I was there as it was a convenient distance from the previous night. I arrived in Krabi at around 2PM having covered 110KMS in around 4 hours. I would happily have covered another 100KMS on a bike that had been made by a being possessed by some degree of compassion, but my tolerance for discomfort was at an end and so I called it a day. I rode around the town convinced that as it is a tourist destination there must be something of note, a beach, a casino, some wonderful old architecture, but try as I may, beyond a bronze statue of a crab I could find nothing other than lots of white people wandering around and stopping to eat pizza. I considered pressing on but, once it realised what I had in mind, my body protested quite violently and insisted that I should stop. So I did. I ate pizza, and I drank some red wine which was jolly nice.
What being in a tourist town seems to mean is that for the price normally paid for an AC room I get a fan room. The room is fine, it is small but clean with two beds and a bathroom. What is clever about it is what they have managed to do with the air. Beyond my room the hotel seems to be of a naturally cool disposition. There is a breeze that blows through the corridors, but the staff seem to have gone to a lot of bother to collect some particularly thick warm and damp air and crammed it into my room. They have also devised a way to ensure that it does not leave the room. All very clever and for just a little more money that one would generally pay for a nice big room with a cool air conditioned atmosphere. You don’t get that sort of service away from the tourist hotspots.
But I digress, as I was saying, I began the day a little bellow par, but interestingly it was one of the better days cycling since leaving Singapore. The reason, hills, and from time to time a head wind. Granted, these are not conditions generally associated with fine cycling, but on a single speed the extra effort needed through the pedals means a constant changing of weight distribution and the consequent relieving of pressure on contact points. Understand?
And so I whizzed along quite merrily for the first half of the day, standing up on the pedals for the climbs, sitting and spinning fast on the down hills then pressing on with extra effort when I turned into the wind.
Now on the west side of Thailand I have noticed with much interest the tremendous change in the spider situation. From The Malay border in the south east corner, along the east coast and then across the middle there is a disturbing amount of monstrous spiders. They are everywhere, huge beasts the size of a man’s hand hanging from webs that span the road from the electrical cables on either side. I kid you not, whopping great black and yellow things they are. One has to take extreme caution when nipping into the bushed to answer nature’s call, for not only do they lash their nets from electrical cables they also like bushes and trees for spinning a web. Indeed just two days ago I was in the bushes for personal reasons and turning around found myself face to face with one, which made me shudder rather. As a man who is far from fond of arachnids I have been observing these with much morbid interest, and am pleased to note their absence on the west coast. I wonder why. Answers to the usual address on the back of a sealed down envelope please.