Up to Chiang Mai with my trusty new little toy

Trip Start Aug 10, 2007
Trip End Ongoing

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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

First overnight train experience from Bangkok to Chiang Mai in north Thailand, and apart from the group of rowdy middle aged Swiss gentlemen who made up half of my train compartment and the 4 hour delay on the 13 hour journey all was well. Indian Railways! Come back, all is forgiven.

Chiang Mai is on everyone's lips once you mention you're going to Thailand, so I was curious what to expect, but it turns out to be a lovely quaint little town, of which the larger part is surrounded by a moat (another ideal jogging circuit, I'd say). My hotel of first choice was full, so I ended up checking in for four nights at Charcoa, the place just next door with similar facilities and yet again I'm spending somewhat more on my room than the budget, just to brace myself in anticipation of Myanmar.

I might have mentioned it before, but one of the things I really love of the Thai is their friendliness, despite the onslaught of (sometime highly ignorant) foreign tourists. Once you show you speak one or two words of Thai (I do speak just two words of Thai), or show an interest in their culture, you're fully embraced and even (like yesterday) invited to come and stay over at their place (without a massage or anything intended).

Am spending most of my time playing about with my new little toy, the Eee PC, which Noam advised me to buy when he was over, and I must admit, once you've managed to curl your fingers around the small keyboard it's a joy to work with (and means I have more time to keep up the blogs). And what is more relaxing than sitting in the sun with a mini laptop, finding out what weird and wonderful places to go to?

In two days time, I'll be heading back to Bangkok for the last time in January and then on from there to Yangon.
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