After a heavy downpour last night with water knee-deep in our lane and after straining my back hauling those heavy sandbags into place, today was time for a bit of fun.
I took my new BMW R1200GS Adventure for a little test ride up through Nong Choke, Chachoengsao, Ban Sang and Prachinburi, the eastern suburbs of Bangkok. That's near where Philip's River Inn is, presently rather Philip's In River, as water has covered the entire plot. My daughter Lila went along with her car, to give some cash to our workers' team there, so I grabbed the opportunity and asked her to take a few pictures.
I'll say it again: what a motorcycle! The perfect vehicle for present road conditions, especially on those wet muddy and sandy stretches. Was I grateful BMW insisted on delivering the bike with a set of knobly tires. I cursed when I got them, but today without them I'd have been on my side at least once, as the bike took control of me on a patch of ankle-deep sand. Wow!
To the East of Bangkok, the catastrophe is not as bad as I had thought. Nevertheless, it is hard enough as it is for the folks who are living in knee-deep water for weeks, but I also got the sense that this is the way of life in these plains that are innundated every other year.
On exiting and reentering Bangkok through the eastern suburbs there was less water than I thought. But then again, the canals, which often are higher then the residential areas, and which are used for drainage, are full to the brim. It's close call, but I think chances are we'll survive - with wet feet. So what!
Having said that, the situation to Bangkok's North remains chaotic, and ten thousands of people are suffering seriously from the water masses. I'll tell you this, one can say many things about Thailand, but when they are in dire straits, people still manage a smile, like that family on the tractor. As Ali G would say: Respect!
Well, after the frustrations and concerns, after preparing sandbags, food and emergency supplies for the last 7 days, it felt good to go out and have a bit of fun on the bike.
There's rain, thunder and lightning in my area right now, so I better go and check on those sandbags again.
Philip A. Baechtold