Chiang Mai

Trip Start Jan 23, 2013
Trip End Jul 23, 2013

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Flag of Thailand  , Chiang Mai,
Wednesday, January 30, 2013

We overslept until 10:15, yes 10:15 and had to quickly throw clothes on and rush down to try and catch breakfast which we thought finished at 10:30 but, much to our embarrassment, ended at 10.00. We both looked disheveled and starving and much to our delight, one of the restaurant staff took pity on us and bought us some toast, jam and butter and also some fruit. We were able to help ourselves to coffee but it was just slightly stewed.

After breakfast we decided to take an easy day out and just go for a leisurely stroll around Chiang Mai Old City. We hailed a ride for 100B ( we will never pay a penny more now ) and asked to be dropped at Wat Phra Singh, a Buddhist Temple in the western part of the walled city. This Wat was very impressive; it was established in 1345 and is the focal point for the religious festivities of Songkran (Thai New Year) in mid April. We saw a few Buddhist Monks in action; reading prayers and blessing people.

From the Wat we walked East and found a lovely cafe where I had a Kiwi Smoothie and a Museli Yoghurt and Terry ordered an Ice Coffee and a cake but got a hot coffee (which he really didn't need in 32 degree heat!)

As we had booked 2 places on the Thai Farm Cookery School online earlier, and had received an email asking us to pay the balance to an office in Chiang Mai, we set off to find it. I was totally confused where we were by this time but thankfully Terry hadn't lost his bearings and was able to take us straight there. We paid the balance and were just walking away when I noticed a small homely looking Hotel offering B&B. We asked whether any vacancies were available ( as only booked in the Holiday Garden Hotel for 2 nights), but sadly the Hotel was full but the owner pointed out another just down the road. We wandered down and were delighted with the suite that was available for 800B a night (£16). The Hotel was called My Mums Home, and we thought we would probably stay 3 or 4 nights before moving on.

As we were feeling a little tired we decided to start making our way back to the Hotel. En route, I fancied a coffee so we stopped in a little coffee shop. When we left the shop it started spitting with rain. Having got caught out before; Terry had bought a brolly and I had packed my 'pac a mac' so we smugly thought we would be OK. Sadly, this was not the case. Within 5 minutes, the spitting had turned into an absolute downpour, the rain was coming down so heavy, from all directions, and it hurt when it hit bare skin ( we had shorts and sandals on). There was nothing for it but to try and find shelter so we ran to this small stand on the side of the road which we later realised was for traffic cops - no wonder we were getting some strange looks from motorists as they passed. It hardly gave us any shelter anyway; even our underwear got drenched and my shoes were squelching. I could not stop laughing (I'm useless in a crisis) .

During this state of emergency, Terry suddenly realised that he was no longer holding his hat and was trying to remember where he might have left it. We thought it was probably when we paid for the Thai Farm Cookery School as he remembered taking it off. He was really upset as he had become quite attached to that hat. I was quite upset for him, but still had my hat.

We arrived back at the Hotel like a couple of drowned rats and trod mud from our feet and water that was dripping off us, all through the posh reception. We went up to our room and freshened up and decided to eat in, as the restaurant looked welcoming. Sadly though, the food was vile. It was like a buffet and you could help yourself but the Chicken was not Chicken at all
(I confronted a waitress with this) and for 200B a head, was the most expensive meal we have eaten yet!

We went up to our room and packed up our bags in readiness for moving on to 'My Mums Home' tomorrow.
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