Re: Motorcycle

Postby EoinC on Wed 16th Oct 2:33pm

Now in Laos...
10hrs to ride 150km, following a track up the Mekong through Warlord territory. Started to rain, just after I made it through to the Muang Long / Xiengkok road - Any earlier and I would’ve been totally foobarred.
Only dropped the bike 3 times in quagmires, but each time got harder to pick up. Ran out of water along the way, and bike was running on fumes by the time Igot to Muang Long in the dark, despite having picked up a 2l bottle of ‘petrol’ in a Tai Lu village along the way.
Ferkin’ hard work for an old fella, but it was a great ride.Now in Laos...
10hrs to ride 150km, following a track up the Mekong through Warlord territory. Started to rain, just after I made it through to the Muang Long / Xiengkok road - Any earlier and I would’ve been totally foobarred.
IMG_0692.JPG
EoinC
Member for: 9 years 3 months

Re: Motorcycle

Postby EoinC on Fri 18th Oct 12:53am

Sticking around Muang Long for a bit. No electricity today, but managed a bucket wash of the bike. Finally put the Large Format camera to use, too.
EoinC
Member for: 9 years 3 months

Re: Motorcycle

Postby EoinC on Fri 18th Oct 9:23pm

I’m liking Muang Long a lot, and seem to have set up residency. I went for a walk across to an Akha village, Ban Nongkham, this morning, and ended up at their primary school, where I got permission to take a photo with my large format field camera.
All of the kids thought the setting up was really funny, particularly when I was buried under the dark-cloth.
Trouble was, when I went to take the photo’s, all the kids were behind me. I called out “Rong rem mai me look!” (“The school has no children”), which they thought was hilarious, and they started chanting “Rong rem mai me look!”.
Yesterday, Muang Long was without electricity - Possibly Lucas, Lord of Darkness?
EoinC
Member for: 9 years 3 months

Re: Motorcycle

Postby EoinC on Sun 20th Oct 1:23pm

Yesterday, I went for a ride up into the hills. As it was heading for dusk, I was thinking about turning back (Just one more turn... Just one more turn...), when I met a section where I had to stop for 2 motorbikes coming down.
They were high school students from Muang Long, working up in the hills in the weekend. One of them wanted to practice his English - He had Avery good vocabulary, but struggled with pronunciation, as his English teacher at school couldn’t speak English.
We decided that I’d give him a pronunciation lesson in the evening (Blind leading the blind), and headed back down the hill, together with the other two on their bike.
Along the way, we met a rider who had broken down heading up the hill, dressed in camo, and with a homemade ‘rifle’. His spark plug was blacker than the inside of the Huntley Coal Mine Decline with the power out. Finally, the got him going, and he headed off up into the jungle. The boy then told me that that was his teacher.
We headed back to Muang Long, and I took them down to the river to show them the drone I have with me. We attracted a large gathering of Akha women, on their way back to their villages in the hills, after a day at the markets. They were in high spirits, and pushed me more and more to fly up, down, and all around. Easy to see who wears the jodphurs in an Akha household. Once they start laughing, there’s no stopping them.
Last night we had the English lesson on the verandah, with 5 students in attendance. It was good fun, as they all hung shite on each other as they tried to say English syllables.
Today, I’m heading off to Muang Sing. I may go further, but I think I’d like to do some more exploring around the area.
I’m down to 4 sheets of colour film, and a shiteload of ISO 20 B&W sheets - Great for tonal detail, but slooooooowwww as fuscia.
EoinC
Member for: 9 years 3 months

Re: Motorcycle

Postby EoinC on Mon 21st Oct 8:28pm

I was down at the market this morning, with the field camera. Everyone wants to look in through the lens...
A young lad helped me pack up my tripod, which he enjoyed working out. I’ll head to the primary school tomorrow.
The rice fields are excellent now, with their fluorescent green-gold. Harvest is under way. Yesterday I put the drone up on the way back in to Muang Sing from the border, with sun rays falling on the hills.
After the market foray and breakfast, I rode up into the hills behind Ban Seuadaeng, until I got to 2 Akha villages - Ban Houayhoy, and Ban Houay??? (the old man who was telling me the name was all “buayed up” (PNG term for full cut on the betelnut).
The kids in Ban Houayhoy mobbed me - True Rock Star Status - need to remember to bring Bouncers in the Roadie Crew up here.
I stopped at the school in Ban Seuadaeng on the way back (extended concert tour) - Once you hand a GoPro over to these kids, all Hell breaks loose.
EoinC
Member for: 9 years 3 months

Re: Motorcycle

Postby EoinC on Sun 27th Oct 9:30am

Wednesday:
After a few days riding around the hills North of Muang Sing, I headed down to Luang Namtha this morning, to decide if I wanted to ride up to Gnot Ou.
My foobarred shoulder was making it’s importance known to me, and I just kept riding, ending up in Phayao, so only a short hop down to Lampang tomorrow.
Had my only genuine close-call today on the Vieng Phoukka - Houayxai section, when a mad £&@)er bus driver ran me off the road as he came head-on at full noise around a right bend (turning left for him), overtaking a truck going downhill. There was a fairly healthy drop on the shoulder, and his outer tyre on his duals was over the shoulder.
I headed bush, but managed to keep it together (Good onya, Enfield).
I hope he grows up a little before he kills some villager or bus load of innocents.
I also past a group of about 20 Beemers, heading North through one of the ridge villages, towards LNT. They seemed to be on a bit of a mission to get wherever they were going.
I really like that part of Laos, from Muang Sing across to Xiangkok. Not that the Interceptor is anything less than the most capable Adventure Bike in the Known Universe, but I’d love to spend some time up there with a slightly more dirt-oriented bike.
The Enfield handled herself well (much better than I handled her). I put her in plenty of places (and orientations) that she should not have to be in, yet she managed to stay largely upright (apart from the three times I dropped her on the track up the Mekong to Xiengkok - and those were 110% my fault).
Next time?
- Carry less shite: Using the large format camera was fun, but it’s cumbersome, and has an inordinate amount of paraphernalia to carry (tripod, camera, ball head, boxes of film, film holders, dark cloth, change bag, light meter, shutter cable, loupe...). I think I’ll leave it for dedicated trips. Most of the other gear got used, but could still be trimmed down a lot to only what is ‘necessary’.
- Less moving / More exploring: I enjoyed myself most when I was based in one place, making daily unplanned forays of following my farang nose. The part where I rode all day to get from A to B, then off again next day to get from B to C, was OK, but definitely not where the value was for me. Next time I’d probably put the bike on the train up to CM (or convince the CFO that I need to get a registered dirtbike sitting in Lampang).
- Kids: I dropped into several schools. Most I just gate-crashed and disrupted normal service, whilst one I organised to be there at knock-off time. Handing out a GoPro, and flying a drone had them in hyperdrive. They were all great fun. Next time, I think I’ll pick up some (Laos) Big Brother Mouse books for each of the schools ( http://www.bigbrothermouse.com/index.html ) - I absolutely love how seriously they take education.

From here, it’s a little bit of time in Lampang with the Whanau, then make my way back South to KL. I think I’ll break the journey a little more on the way down.
Once I get back, I have a bit of film-developing to do, and some vid’s to compile (I assume - I haven’t looked at them yet, so they may just be cerebral snapshots... ).

Sunday:
I ended up staying in Lampang until midday Saturday, getting in 3 man-whimpering Thai massage sessions at the Lampang Herb Conservation Centre to get my shoulder back in some kind of order. Yesterday arvo I rode down to Phitsanulok, foregoing continuing onto Nakhon Sawan, with the combination of fairly high ambient temperature, and a massage-depleted bod limiting sensible progress.

Hopefully, I can get South of Bangkok today, allowing me to split the remainder of the journey back to KL into shorter hops than we’re required on the way up North.
EoinC
Member for: 9 years 3 months

Re: Motorcycle

Postby EoinC on Sat 2nd Nov 4:21pm

Now back in KL. Foobarred shoulder was taking some of the pleasure out of riding, so I just carried on South. My digital photo's have been fairly crap, so lucky I didn't take many of them - Here're a few from Laos:
ImageL002 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL014 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL017 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL008 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL006 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL005 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL007 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL015 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL012 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL011 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL010 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL009 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL013 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr
Last edited by EoinC on Sat 2nd Nov 4:31pm, edited 1 time in total.
EoinC
Member for: 9 years 3 months

Re: Motorcycle

Postby EoinC on Sat 2nd Nov 4:29pm

Some phone pic's...
ImageIMG_0734 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageIMG_0698 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageIMG_0733 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageIMG_0737 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageIMG_0739 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr
EoinC
Member for: 9 years 3 months

Re: Motorcycle

Postby EoinC on Mon 4th Nov 2:22am

A few more (disgraceful way to treat a brand new road bike)...
ImageL030 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL034 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL031 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL033 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL032 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr
EoinC
Member for: 9 years 3 months

Re: Motorcycle

Postby EoinC on Mon 4th Nov 4:01pm

A few more:
Shan State, Myanmar, from Laos...
ImageL040 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

Myanmar, from Thailand...
ImageL051 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

Laos, from Thailand...
ImageL047 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL049 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL050 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL044 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL043 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

Thailand, from Thailand...
ImageL046 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL045 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL048 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL052 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr

ImageL042 by Eoin Christie, on Flickr
EoinC
Member for: 9 years 3 months

Re: Motorcycle

Postby EoinC on Tue 12th Nov 10:14am

EoinC
Member for: 9 years 3 months

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