After travelling for a while the most noticeable change to ourselves is, that we live our life way more in the present then in the past or the future. And we learned to enjoy the moment and not worry too much what comes around the next corner, as it will come anyway.
On the road things can change quickly – the one moment its a smooth ride garnished with cool drinks on a sunny afternoon through a beautiful valley somewhere in SEA. The next moment the cooler or some other part decides to have had enough for the moment and you find yourselves trying to find a fix which brings you at least to the next town, while stopping every five km to refill the cooler and going with hazardous speed over a narrow mountain road to get somewhere before the water isn finally finished. Been there, done that.
Thinggs like that have happened so often to us, so we learned to enjoy what we have for the time being and not to worry about what may come and what has been or could have been done differently. It is ike it is. And this is a good lesson, I think.
And there is this whole rule and officials thing. At home, at least in Austria and Germany, there is a rule or a regulation for next to everything and there is mostly not much leeway in it, so you learn to adopt to the rules.
Starting with Russia, the world works differently. You know there is a rule, but you need of something somewhat more or something different, or the blue stamp on the green paper, knowing that the blue stamp can only go on the yellow paper. Things like that.
You learn that rules or regulations are just rough guidelines in most other parts of the world and that your real situation mostly depends on how much the official likes you or the way you explain things. In Thailand, for example, we needed a Visa extension. And the rule is that you only get an extension for the same amount of time as you got with your original visa.
As we had a visa on arrival and we are Austrians, this was only fourteen days but we didn’t ant to pay 1900 Baht per person for just 14 days more – we wanted 30 days. So we drove to a smaller immigration office near the cambodian border, wwhich is the first important thing. Go somewhere where it is less official and more liklely that rules can be beeded a little. And instead of asking for an extension we just went to the (very friendly) guy there and said with full confidence that we need a 30 day visa extension. Like its normal and we expect to get it. And guess what? It worked – 30 day extension checked. And the next time we do the same thing and if we don’t get a 30 day extension after the 14 day arrival visa we will point at the old extension and show that we got it last time, so why shouldn’T we this time? And guess what? It will work again – would surprise me a lot, if not.
There is a ton of examples for these everyday helpers and its the way the world works (outside Europe). And we like it 🙂 – small tricks that make the world go around.