Up at 9-ish to take our fill of breakfast. We forgot yesterday, so wanted to eat loads today to save on food bills, but when we got there there were only six rounds of bread left and a bit of jam and butter. Better than nothing.
We got a red taxi to the station. Took us a few cars before someone agreed to take us for the proper price of ฿30 each. The others were wanting ฿50, so we just walked off. Wasn’t in the mood for any of this today, plus we needed to save dollars for the train as it was probably gonna be an expensive day. There’s a board with all the times and prices on which is great. They also have a print-out for you so you know what options you have.
We’d thought yesterday about getting the early-morning train, but that would get us in for nine at night if it was on time, so we’d have trouble finding places open to stay in. Our reasonable options were on the 15:30 train that got in at 05:30 and there was third class seats for ฿271 each or fan sleeper for ฿571 or something. We went third class all the way and boy did we wish we hadn’t. Saved some money, yeah, but you can see where the money goes. If it’s a short journey then go for it, but on a looooong haul like this (14 hours) it’s not a good idea. At first I’d said I remembered that you had a seat each and we’d be facing each other. The seats are a maximum of three feet wide, so a modest size for someone of average size like myself—except that we realised that they were actually two seats not one, and you’re allocated a seat so you don’t have a choice where to sit. Me and Lauren when sat shoulder to shoulder were sticking out into the aisle by about six inches. We’re not even big people. Add this to the fact that there could be two randomers facing you about two feet away and it’s not a great prospect. No one was in the opposite seat so we were sat opposite each other or about six hours looking out the window at the weird trees and the misty hills for a while and read a bit. It was impossible to get comfortable due to the seats, and I’d been trying to get a little nap in but there was nowhere for my legs to go that felt remotely like I could get a few winks so I just spent an hour or so wriggling around.
A few stops had gone by and no one had got in the seat until this lumbering hulk of a woman got on with a little girl and made us pay for our hours of [relative] luxury. She was insane. She just kinda stood by my (her) seat with a vacant look on her flat pug-like face. I say “pug-like” ‘cos it was like a pug that had been repeatedly smashed in the face with an industrial shovel and then developed a bad case of acne as a result. The girl was alright. She kept staring at us, but we didn’t mind as she was only about five. Anyway, I moved and she immediately opened the windows all the way down letting in all kinds of horrid insects, chucked her stuff everywhere and started fidgeting and fanning herself like a mad thing. It wasn’t even warm, and if me and Lauren thought it was cold then surely a Thai must be freezing cold. Maybe it was just ‘cos she was so fat. Trying to sleep when it was two to a chair and having nowhere to put my legs was like a kind of torment and I quickly found myself staring absently at an advert on the wall of a bowl of noodles with two tiny eggs on top. the novelty of this kept my spirits raised, and although I kept wishing that the woman would get locked in the toilet or fall out the window, I kept my cool.
After a while of the girl singing to herself and faffing about by the window the woman decided it was time for her to go to sleep. Whipping out a beach mat and a little backpack she made up a crude bed not fit for a dog and lay it underneath the chairs across the aisle. The people there were laying one to a seat and asleep. Who knows what they must have thought when they woke up to a small child’s abdomen laying on a straw mat in the middle of their seats, her head and legs slid neatly away from sight. There was also the issue that the woman had perched herself on the edge on one of their seats and put her feet up right near the face of the sleeping woman who occupied the position opposite. I felt bad on her when she opened her eyes to that mess of a scenario.
I somehow nodded off as I could now stretch my legs a bit and when I woke up the girl was on the chair opposite me and the fat woman had assumed a sitting position with her legs underneath the seat where the kid had been laying and had her face about 20cm away from that poor sleeping woman. Weird. The next time I woke up I’m not messing, Lauren had moved to an empty seat down the way, my legs were tucked up on my chair, the girl was still kipping opposite me only now the woman had moved the mat and was sat on the floor right in front of me. She was so wide that there was definitely no room for my legs there now. I just sat in disbelief as that shameless human was just lurking about down there just seeming to fill the entire space. What she was thinking no one will ever know. I would put my last dime on it that she doesn’t have a husband and that kid wasn’t hers as it didn’t look anything like its Jabba guardian. I took a photo for proof ‘cos I didn’t think anyone would believe my tale. What a freaking night.