It was Sunday morning, December 29th, 2013 and once again I found myself with an entire day of nothing to do. In fact I didn’t have to return to work until Thursday. With that much time to kill the thought of spending an excess amount of time in my apartment at the Wasana Mansion seemed upsetting. I’m not a hermit. Just because I don’t know anyone or know of anything to do in this city doesn’t mean I’m going to hunker down and wait until I have to work again. That’s the choice a World of War Craft player would make. I heard rumors about a beautiful beach just over an hour’s drive north. A beach where the water was that crystal clear green you see in travel magazines. Supposedly women strolled along the beach topless and there was an endless supply of ice cold Leo beer for just 30 baht each. Besides, my brand new Yamaha Mia 125 had been purring for me to take her out onto the open road ever since I bought her.
The Mia moped is 125 cc’s of piss and vinegar. Let open the throttle and a thunderous roar whips through the streets and alley ways of the city making even the most die-hard Harley Davidson aficionados question the choices they’ve made in their lives. To be honest the Yamaha Mia scared me to death when I saw her at the dealership but she had to be mine. The locals fearfully refer to her as the “Blue Dragon”.
The choice became obvious, at noon I would set out to find Khanom beach and see for myself if the rumors were true. Thailand’s roads are fraught with danger but successfully navigating them can bring about the greatest of rewards. Vicious packs of dogs waiting to rip you to shreds at stop lights, pot holes the size of small cars, and worst of all those damn kamikaze mini bus drivers all contributing to Thailand’s number 3 ranking as the deadliest country to drive. No need to worry though, with the Blue Dragon as my steed I was sure to reach the promise land. After a quick bite to eat at a roadside restaurant I was headed north on the 401 towards Khanom.
In Thailand there is a strict vehicle hierarchy that has been established for some time now. It’s very simple; the largest vehicle has the right of way. Motorbikes aren’t even given the courtesy of being allowed to travel in the slow lane. No, they are relegated to the shoulder. Motorbikes caught traveling in the middle of a lane are usually given a 1 second warning honk before being run off the road. There is one exception however. That exception is the Blue Dragon.
Within moments of entering the highway I was ripping and roaring up the fast lane with reckless abandon. I had total disregard for my safety and the safety of others, women and children included. I was blowing the doors off vehicles and flying past them as if they were moving in slow motion. Who was going to stop me? I passed several police checkpoints along the way but the cops didn’t stand a chance at slowing me down. By the time their minds were able process that the blur was actually a lunatic farang traveling faster than the speed of sound it was too late; the sonic boom ricocheted through their tent turning their whole operation upside down in a matter of milliseconds. Hell hath no fury like the Blue Dragon on the highways of Thailand on a Sunday afternoon in December.
Top speed burns gas fast so after a couple stops to refuel I made it to Khanom in just over an hour. Were throngs of topless Asian beauties waiting for me with that ice cold Leo I so desired? Much to my chagrin I quickly realized the rumors were well, just rumors. Khanom is an okay beach but could be a really nice beach if those dirt bag bastards wouldn’t leave their trash in the sand. I don’t get it; a beach is the most valuable terrain we get to enjoy yet shit heads have no problem destroying it with garbage and all the locals are too apathetic to do anything. I shouldn’t have been surprised though, less than pristine beaches are much too common here.
Other than the hazards to watch out for in the sand the beach really is quite pretty. At the north end is a small green mountain with a large ship at its base. The ship was there as some sort of industrial operation was going on. At the end of the road well before you reach the mountain there is a long concrete wall too high to see over so I wasn’t sure what kind of work they were doing.
At the south end of the beach there is another small green mountain jutting out into the Gulf of Thailand forming a bay. Several low rate “resorts” are scattered about along with restaurants that have tables placed right in the sand. I stopped at one spot that had live music and enjoyed that Leo I’d been craving the whole wild ride up there. I polished off a plate of fried rice with squid and determined Khanom beach had nothing to offer my over indulged Hawaiian senses.