Chiang . . . Mai??

Trip Start Dec 30, 2006
Trip End Mar 15, 2007

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Where I stayed
Sri Pat Guest House Chiang Mai
Read my review - 5/5 stars

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Saturday, February 17, 2007

Greetings all,

We are in sunny Chiang Mai - and we love it! The trip down from Chiang Rai was long and winding to say the least, and after the exploits of the past few weeks we decided to take it easy and relax for a few days. We fly down to Phuket on the 21st and here suits us down to the ground.

Chiang Mai is split into two parts, the old town (surrounded by a moat) and the rest of the city. We wandered around the first night, roaming aimlessly (my preferred way to travel) up and down, in and out of the little streets. There is a famous night market here, so we headed there to check out the bargains. The next morning we decided to change our guesthouse, as we were going to stay for a few days, why not treat ourself - we moved and now have a TV as well as hot shower. YYYYEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSS.
We then booked a cooking course! Awesome, I mean what's the point of going on about how good the food is when you can recreate that Thai feeling at home? So we booked ourselves in for a day to perfect those culinary skills. That night we went to the local Thai Boxing ring for some Muay Thai biffo! I wasn't too fussed about going, but its turned out to be great. It started off with two kids (their aggregate weight didn't come close to mine) who danced around the ring in a pre match routine then they proceeded to beat the be-jaysus out of each other. The bout lasted 2 rounds. There were 12 bouts in total that night, four with ex-pats in the ring. The ex-pat fights were the best as they wanted to beat the other person senseless and usually got knocked out in the process.

The next day we got up and headed to the local food market to buy the ingredients we would need for the days cooking. T was feeling a bit sick, but we put it down to the malaria tablets. The market was interesting, raw meat laced with flies, pig's heads and veggies that we didn't recognise. We then went back to our teacher's house and were taken through the ins and outs of preparing curry paste, phad thai, panang/yellow curry, sweat and sour veggies/soup. We had a set menu to choose from, so we could cook something we liked and then eat it for lunch. Unfortunately, T got worse and we cut the course short and headed for bed. I put her to sleep and left her there in the knowledge that she was ok, just needed some sleep. So I went and hired a scooter and zoomed off around Chiang Mai. Shaky would be a pretty apt word to describe me on the scooter but I got better.

On returning to the room, T had left a note to say she had taken herself off to hospital! What kind of a boyfriend would let this happen?! I raced there to find her ok, she got a blood test as she had similar symptoms to malaria (which she got whilst in Africa). Four hours later and we got the all clear for the time being, some antibiotics and an appointment for another blood test first thing tomorrow. So, for the next few days we relaxed. T slept, I read. We watched telly until she got her strength back. We were back to the doctor a few times to get the confirmed all clear, by which time T felt much better. Thank God.

On our last day, we took a 'leisurely' spin up to the Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. Having nearly killed T twice on the way up, all prayers were answered when we arrived. You get an amazing view of the city below (well you would if the haze wasn't there) and the temple is sacred to all Thais. En route back down, we stopped into the zoo and saw the giant Pandas there. They are trying to breed them here, so it was a great chance to see these cuddly things. Very cute. The rest of the zoo was ok, it was very hot though and late in the afternoon. We headed back to the room, dropped the scooter off and packed our things. Tomorrow we would head down to Phuket to then head north for Ranong and Koh Phayam.

Till next time

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