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Fair dinkum, mate. Keywords1

Sakhon Nakhon

"For me, Sakhon Nakhon sprang up like an oasis after a 200 km motorbike ride.  Doesn't look like I'm alone.  During World War II, Sakhon Nakhon was also an oasis for the Thai resistance to the Japanese.  And in the late 1950's, Communists saw the town as an oasis for disseminating then hip socialist doctrine."  Doug Knell, Doug's Republic

How do you get from Mukdahan back to Nong Khai by motorbike on the quick?   You stop in Sakhon Nakhon for the night.

I'll repeat what I've said often in this Thailand section.  Thailand has 76 provinces -- actually 75, but Bangkok is considered a special administrative region and governed as a province.  Foreigners don't usually make a distinction between the provinces.  If someone says he's taking a one-week vacation to Chiang Mai, all assume he's going to Chiang Mai town, the largest town in Chiang Mai province, not Doi Lo, a tiny village still located within Chiang Mai province. 

Sakhon Nakhon

Now that you've heard of Sakhon Nakhon, where the hell are you?

Often you're not aware you've crossed a provincial border.  I did not know I entered Sakhon Nakhon province until I saw the Welcome To sign across the highway, which always shows 3 key attractions in the province.  These blink-or-miss signs, while large, are easy to pass without you remembering you've seen them.

I'll be honest.  A year ago I never heard of Sakhon Nakhon.  A fellow American posted a note on my books section.  He was a writer now married to a Thai and living in Sakhon Nakhon on his wife's family's farm.   That did not inspire me to visit. The stop came out of necessity.  It's too bloody long to motorbike from Mukdahan to Nong Khai, especially when it's rainy season.

I stayed only a single night, but enjoyed it.  Towns like these are descriptive of the real Thailand, and I'm sure I could stay a week in any one of them without boredom setting in.  I found a USD 12 aircon room and dined on a tasty meal at the Dusit Hotel.  The place is easy to get around and, hey, it even boasts a vegetarian restaurant.  Vietnamese food lovers can toast Ho Chi Minh around the clock.


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