The exit from Myanmar and entrance in Thailand takes place in the border town called Mae Sot. The add another half an hour at the clock and move back to the left side of the road, like in Nepal and India. The mirrors on our handlebar are still on the left side and therefore the wrong side and at such a moment you realize how often you use the mirrors. Not that the traffic requires it. We cycle on a wide lane of a 2×4 lane road and there is hardly any traffic.
We check in to a guest house that was tipped by cyclists Frouke & Kerin earlier that morning and then pay a visit to Ton Baars. Ton is a Warmshowers host and stranded in Mae Sot 19 years ago on his world bike tour. Currently he can not host any guests but he can meet up in the Borderline café of which he is one of the initiators. In the evening we eat with Ton at one of the many eateries on the night market. Many Thai towns seem to have a day and a night market. On the day market you can buy really everything, on the night market you mainly see food stalls.
The next morning, Ton asks us to come to the Borderline café again. Two French brothers arrived and would like some information about Myanmar. We meet the guys that are on a special mission. From Vietnam they cycle back to France and in ten countries they plant a total of 10,000 fruit trees. The ones in Thailand are planted at a school that is built in Mae Sot with exclusively natural building materials. The brothers stay here for a week and then cycle into Myanmar on their way to Yangon, where a next project is waiting. Nice initiative and we hope that the trees will be taking care of in the future.
We follow the border river between Myanmar and Thailand for a while towards the north. We take the road (the 105) to cycle to Chiang Mai via the legendary and famous Mae Hong Son Loop. It is a beautiful wide new asphalt road with impeccable lines, even better than the roads in Myanmar. And what is even better: no more honking at all. It is striking that Thailand is a lot further developed compared to Myanmar: better quality buildings, shops, cars, trucks etc. Reverse side of the better roads is that cars, trucks and motorcycles drive much faster. Ton has told us that many Burmese people live in this region, but we do not see the men in a knitted skirt and less ladies wear the Thanaka on their faces.