Sepuluh. The Boat and the Brothel

We unfolded the map for crossings into Thailand, spread it across the table in the centre of the dorm and held up the guidebook to see how it would match.

Keith had taken the eastern beach towns and islands up through Malaysia, switched tack reluctantly through the Tamen Negara jungle straight for Penang and was headed to Koh Phi-Phi next. He wanted to stick to the shoreline as much as possible. To island hop up the eastern side of the Thai/Malay peninsula. It must have been his Bondai upbringing!

He adjusted his wire rimmed glasses and pushed back his black curls as he leant over the Tourism Malaysia fold out, still crinkled from the soaking in Tioman, then he traced a pencil line up along the west coast.

“There’s a boat from Kuala Perlis,” he pointed at the northern most point on the left side of Malaysia peninsula.

Another time much later, when I was in the Honduran interior, there was also only a brothel to stay at, but that time I slept alone in the mayor’s barn!

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