I caught the “VIP” bus last night from Chiang Mai back to Bangkok. I had to wait at least one hour before the bus was full – no luxury of having a vacant seat next to me.

A couple of hours out of Chiang Mai, I hear clunk, clunk clunk. I thought we had blown a tyre, but the driver quickly got under the bus for repairs. We seemed to be in a pretty remote location, so if it we had to get assistance, we would be in for a wait. Not sure what the problem was but after about 20 minutes we were back in business.

Another 15 minutes and the same noise started – clunk, clunk, clunk. The driver or maybe the onboard mechanic was able to fix the problem this time. I was trying to watch him work, but he only seemed to have a beach mat to lie on to get under the bus. Maybe they had had the problem before, but I thought they were pretty resourceful to be able to fix the problem on the fly.

After 10 hours we made it to Bangkok, arriving early enough to miss Bangkok’s traffic snarls.