Return Trip ... Bangkok to Chiang Rai

Door to door, 814 kilometers in 10 hours. I knocked off one full hour on the return trip yesterday. Maybe I was just that much more anxious, to get home and out of the big city. I really enjoy the stretch through the forest on highway 103. Almost as much as I dislike those rough stretches on highway 11. It is a real show, however.

Drivers weaving left and right in a vain effort to avoid the punishing road conditions. Drivers in the opposing lane forced off the road to avoid head on collisions with those single minded drivers, determined to pass on blind curves or dodge potholes. One van was spending much time on the asphalt shoulder while a big bus was straddling the center line. So I had the pleasure of dealing with the gaping holes in the road as well as the slalom like maneuvers of the other drivers.

The truck was much heavier on the way back and it made the ride much smoother! That is probably common knowledge to most truck owners but was a new experience for me. We brought back many household items that might not survive a shipping company, more clothes and all the stuff we bought for the house. Bangkok Home Pro is nothing like Home Mart in Chiang Rai.

The original idea was to flip the back seat up and fill the cab from floor to ceiling with things that needed to stay dry. The rest would be relegated to the relatively short bed of our 4 door truck. Did you notice that I said, original idea? In typical Thai fashion, someone invited themselves to a free ride home. Since it was my wife’s sister, I knew better than to make too big a deal out of it. My wife doesn’t allow her family to impose on me much so I figure if she wants her sister to have a chance to ride in the new truck, then I can be man enough to go with the flow.

I don’t let things slide completely, however, so I pointed out how it was going to modify our packing and hauling plans considerably and add to my driving stress. We (my wife) adjusted by getting a new cover and some more plastic bags to assure that nothing in the back would be ruined by the rain. Wouldn’t you know it? It hardly even sprinkled and it made me look like a big wuss, a worrier and anti family. Being me, however, I would rather be over prepared than to be caught with my pants down, so to speak. Afterward I dutifully acknowledged that she had been right and I was just a big worry wort.

We arrived home around sunset and headed to the house site, first thing. True to form they had managed to screw things up while we were gone. My wife was very upset and had a fitful nights sleep. I figure these things happen and you simply sort them out. Does no good telling her that though. That doesn’t keep me from trying, however. In the end I simply try to comfort her and not add to her stress level. This morning she called the contractor and seems to be feeling better after expressing her disappointment. I assured her that everything will work out, just like with all the other little changes and modifications we have made.

She tries so hard to make everything perfect and puts way too much pressure on herself, sometimes. I never, give her a hard time, about anything and try to be supportive and understanding and reinforce her many gifts. Indirectly, however, I do add to her stress level by setting a rather high standard. She will struggle with something and only come to me when she figures it can’t be done. Then I usually sort it out with such ease that I’m sure it must be difficult for her on some level.

She proudly and affectionately, acknowledges her husbands “big brain” (as she calls it) and ability to understand and fix things. See thanks me for sharing and teaching her so much about life but that doesn’t stop her feeling irritated with me at the same time. I can understand her feelings well and honestly don’t know if I could handle “me” as well as she does.

Anyway it is good to be home and I am very sure the wife won’t be going anywhere else until all the work on the house is finished.

Below are a few Bangkok views I call looking for green in the city.