Chiang Mai

Forced Recap: Chiang Mai 2014

Instead of being reminded by my regrets, I should be reminding myself by the way I wish to remember. It has been over two months since myself and the rest of my clan returned from our two month stint in Thailand. When we were there and after we returned we were sure that it was perhaps […]

Korea in Chiang Mai

 

You spend enough time in Asia as an Irishman and you give up expecting to find Irish stuff. You know you’ll stumble across something here or there, but at the best of times all you can find is a can of Guinness and a Westlife song. Chiang Mai, despite its large expat population and even larger tourist numbers was no better than Korea, or anywhere else I’ve been. I had hoped for half a day or so, but any hopes I had were soon dashed by the obvious.


Weekly Photo Challenge: Purple

ImageReal men wear Purple… Purple Aprons… and take cooking classes!

My wife and I were on our 5 month backpacking trip through Asia and Europe when she wanted to sign up for Thai Cooking classes in Chiang Mai.

Not only did I make curry with a mortar and pestle, but I donned a purple apron.

I have to say, I’m a pretty decent cook and we may have bought the Thai Cookbook but  when offered the opportunity, I did not buy the apron.


the moated city

For Songkran we bought super cheap tickets on Air Asia to head up to the small city of Chiang Mai in northwestern Thailand. I thought celebrating in Bangkok might be too crazy and Chiang Mai is known its longer, more laid back festival. The whole country celebrates for about 5 days full of water fights during the hottest summer month.

It was my first time in Chiang Mai, a city I hope to move to some day (it is much more my style, I am sick of the big city) and I really loved it there! It is the 6th biggest city in Thailand, a nice change from Nonthaburi, the second biggest city and where I currently live. I think it is AMAZING that Bangkok has 5 million people as the biggest city in the country and then my area, right outside the city, has only 260,000 people, yet is still the second biggest.

Songkran 2012

It's the biggest organized water fight in the world between thousands of adults. It's very wet, very drunk, a little bit dirty (they used moat water in Chiang Mai) and a LOT of fun! Songkran is the Thai New Year making it now 2555 - or song ha ha ha in Thai - since the calendar here starts at the enlightenment of Buddha (turns out the Buddha has been doing his thing for a lot longer than Jesus.) A full 5 days of extreme water fighting is a damn good time but also very tiring too, pretty much everyone is sick now. Some people like to put ice into the water (which in my opinion it ruins all the fun) and being so cold when it is so hot outside is bad for health... man, my English is really terrible now that I speak broken language all the time, no one actually says "bad for health" in the real English speaking world, right? I can barely remember...


water fight

It's finally here! The much anticipated Thai New Year - Songkran! It is the worlds biggest water fight and I am flying right into the eye of the storm.  Tomorrow afternoon we are flying an hour north to the quaint city of Chiang Mai. It is said to be the biggest celebration for the summer holiday and I am prepared to get wet! It is going to be a long six days, hope I come back alive (Thailand has not been kind my body in the past week, I fell into a sewer -EWGKKK- in Pattaya cutting my leg all up and just an hour ago got stung by a bee while driving my motorbike, geez!) because I know the Thai people are ready to drink and throw buckets of water on me. My students today were brutal dumping bucket after bucket on me, and they are children... Please Buddha, keep me safe!

In Thailand…

I have just returned from a splendid eleven day holiday in the Thailand. Whether or not I deserved it at the time is neither here nor there, I certainly feel like I deserved it now. Which is what’s important, right?

So holidays, there a pain in the tender spots for those among us who plan on being productive on them. I’m always making a mess of things by bringing too many books to read and too many aspirations for writing a few hundred thousand words, or something like that… It’s not that I don’t enjoy not doing anything, but holidays for some reason really don’t bring out the best in me in terms of being productive. Miserably cold winters are much more suitable. In fact, I believe that misery (not abject, but mild doses of the extreme first world problem variety) brings out the best in ones creativity.


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