Alright, enough with these late starts and riding in the dark. I planned out my route well enough to know that I should be able to make Chiang Khong with some stops along the way with plenty of light. What happened to Chiang Rai? Well... I think it just wasn't meant to be. I had to break out the tools and make some adjustments in the parking log. The mirrors had been knocked around and surprisingly hadn't broken. The upper chain guide had come off of one of the bolts and needed some putzing. Yay for tools! Further investigation of the bike illustrated some carnage: A broken turn signal and rear break lever. The result of too much fun.
A random hillside buddha that caught my eye.

After all the to do about going to Chiang Rai, I decided to skip it. I would like to see the white temple but timing wise it just seems better to head to Chiang Khong and the Golden Triangle.
Lunch at a roadside stand was a curry and rice dish. I was very entertained by the snack scooter with bags of goodies hanging off all sides.

The man at the stand sat down and talked for a little while. He tried to teach me some Thai but unfortunately my retention is very poor.
My first view of the Mekong, the main river that divides Thailand and Laos.
I stopped by the Golden Triangle, but was very uncomfortable leaving my bike with my bag. So I took a quick picture and left. The Golden Triangle is the point where Myanmr, Laos and Thailand meet.
Right near by is the Opium Museum because this area was a major part of the Opium route. There is a lot of information about how the poppy flowers came down from China with the hill tribes. Also the cultivation and the legends of the tribes surrounding the poppy as well as tobacco.

I'm sure I'm mixing some of it up but it was very interesting.
I made it to Chiang Khong and found a clean place to stay at the Boom guesthouse. But unfortunently no wifi, so I headed to over to a coffee shop with some groovy furniture. I camped out until they kicked me out and met Wenbin, a Singaporean that road up on a beautiful GS1200. We chatted and compared stories and then headed to find some dinner. You meet the nicest people on a motorcycle.

I feel like I should have had a big fluffy white cat in my lap in this chair.


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