Later, I took the VIP bus from Chiang Mai to Uttaradit. The best company to go with is Nachon Chai Air. You have to book your tickets the same day and I had gotten up early to be certain to get a seat
. I was the only westerner on the bus. The other riders were curious and polite. The bus trip was beautiful. Especially stunning is the scenery between Lampang and Phrae. The mountains were green and very high. The villages we passed through were very peaceful and lovely.
When I arrived, on time in Uttaradit, the Kwam and Sot from BLES (Boon Lott's Elephant Sanctuary) met me for the 45 minute journey to Baan Tuek. After a quick stop in Baan Hat Siew for some beer for the guys and provisions for the girls, I was on my way to BLES to spend 4 days with Katherine and Anon, their family and the elephants.
On Saturday morning there was a big commotion and confluence of cars, rickshaws, motocys, and other means of transport spilling over to the usually quiet soi in front of the Sakorn Resident. I was getting ready to leave for the bus to Sukhothai when I heard all of the noise coming from the Wat down the street. I am not positive but I think the temple is called "Wat Gate." I grabbed my camera and ran over there. There was a very big festival taking place. It sounded to me like this was the burning festival for someone very important. I think it was a once in 10 year celebration; maybe some important bones of a Buddha had been donated to this Wat. I could not find out for certain. It was very interesting and I love the photos I took there.