Travel Blog: Week 69
Northern Thailand – Chiang Mai
Week 69: 03.03.2014 – 09.03.2014
The morning was a lazy one as once again I wasn’t feeling on top form. Oh boy, have I been through a health roller coaster just lately. This could be the environment – constantly changing weather and constantly changing people around, but I’m really hoping that it’s due to the much healthier lifestyle I have and so my body is detoxing all the crappy bacteria that have been lurking in my body for years.
As Fla had now left I was responsible for paying the rent and bills. No one else had moved in yet so I needed to pay for the whole place. I headed off the Airport Plaza for the free cash withdrawal ATM at Aeon and Bangkok Bank to pay the bill. The queue for Aeon was crazy long and after waiting for a while I decided to quit whilst I was ahead. It was Monday and as the banks are closed over the weekend so every man and his dog wanted to withdraw cash and pay a gazillion bills today!!
I found a different ATM which turned out to have higher than average fees – thems the breaks ….typical! Now, off the Bangkok bank. There was quiet a queue at the bank and I dutifully took a number 213 and took a seat. They were serving 183! As I waited I noticed a deposit machine so decided to give it a go. I successfully entered the account I wanted to pay into and started to place the cash in. The little deposit hatch closed before I was ready and counted the notes. It opened a while later displaying the rejected (folded) note – hey, just like HSBC at home. This process continued another couple of times before the machine shut down completely and requested I report the failure at the counter. So much for taking the quick option. I had to queue up anyway. Eventually my number came up and I tried to explain the issue. I think they got it as I was asked to fill out a form and they would sort it out. Call me a worrier but depositing nearly £200 in a machine and being told they’d sort it out without a receipt did not sit right with me. I stood my ground and they said they’d sort it out now if I waited. I did wait and they did sort it out. I got my receipt and I just had to hope the money would reach the correct account. This is the maximum stress I want in my day these days!
I went home for a lie down and a movie. Life can be tough sometimes!
I called Mum on Skype in the afternoon. I’d started to think about what my immediate future looked like and I wanted to share my feelings with my parents. Luckily, Mum was in this morning so we had a bit of a chat.
My plans, as rough and open as they are, consisted of returning to the UK around mid April. I have the chance to walk the Camino de Santiago with Tammy at the end of April and am seriously considering it. After that I intend to sort out the belongings I left scattered in various places and my loft with a view to renting out my place formally and then returning to Chiang Mai later in the year.
After all the days excitement I had an early night.
I woke feeling better but still a little fragile. Another day to be lazy and just let my body regain its energy.
I was craving food from home so went to a new restaurant which I’d been meaning to try. ‘Better than butter’ is an American style diner. I opted for the healthy option of corned beef hash and proper homemade onion rings.
I immediately felt better. I took the long way home and visited the excavated ruins of the original Chiang Mai. The foundations of some of the buildings from many many years had been renovated and preserved. I also stopped by at the most amazing white temple. There was a crazy old bus parked in the parking lot and the keys were still in the ignition – so tempted to take it for a spin.
I had a Skype call with Dad and had a conversation with him much as I had with Mum the day before.
I had a light dinner before bed
I slept really well and woke up feeling like a new woman and on much better form.
I’d tried Macca powder for the first time a few days before in my smoothie and had wondered if that had had an effect on my health. Having sought advice, I was told categorically I wouldn’t have so I gave it another go. Just a very small amount.
I spent the morning catching up on emails, I coloured my hair (think I left the colour in for a little too long), did my hoolla hoop exercises and had a light lunch, and then headed out to Oceans to help with her chocolate class again. She had 6 attendees today and only one had turned up – the others had taken a red bus and had got lost. It was my job to find them, they got as far as Wat Umong, and escort them to Oceans. The class as usual was a success and I got the benefit of trying some chocolates.
A quick turnaround home and then out for dinner.
A morning of meditation, workout and laundry. Theres a pattern forming here!
I spent much of the day with Waew at Dream House, chatting about how the business was holding up in light of what was happening in Bangkok. Things are really not easy here for the Thais. Chiang Mai is totally safe but the travel advice is still to stay away from Thailand. How tragic! This is such a wonderful part of the world. I did some shopping around the old town and also treated myself to a fresh coconut and a cake.
The evening was a relaxing dinner with Oli.
Friday morning is usually brunch with Honor, but today she was being interviewed at the Indian Embassy in the hope they’d grant her a tourist visa. We met for lunch instead and met at Birds Nest. A fabulous, fabulous meal and some good old fashioned chat.
I went back to the old town and Waew, stocked up at Sompet market.
I headed home to look at flights home, before going back out to meet Honor in the night bizarre area to watch an MMA fight. Honor has been training at a Muay Thai gym and one of the trainers was fighting – he was actually the only fighter to make it to a second round and then go on to win.
So, as you know it’s bakery day on a Saturday. Today though, somehow I wasn’t in a bakery kind of day. I would go, of course, but not for breakfast. I didn’t want a gluten blow out, so I made a smoothie and left home a little later than normal. Strangely, I think many others felt the same. There was a whole new crowd and not many of the usuals.
Leo, Richard and I huddled together in a corner and soon decided to call time on the bakery. We had better things to do. Richard wanted an astrology reading and was happy for me to sit in on it – very generous of him as these readings can be rather personal at times. As we were all at a loss end it seemed like the perfect opportunity. We left the bakery and headed for a new restaurant. A place called Food4Thought. After a few wrong turns off the canal road we found it – it didn’t help that the signs for the restaurant hadn’t been put up yet.
Anyway, we settled in a quiet corner and Leo called up Richard’s chart on wifi. Following the astrology workshop I can interpret a small amount but really not to the extent of Leo’s powers of interpretation. It was a full and as expected, personal, story. I think for Richard he recognised many aspects of his life and personality. And hopefully he could use some of the other insights to consider his future.
By now we were all hungry so we ordered up a collection of dishes and filled our faces. Needless to say we stuffed our faces – and these have got to be THE best chips, chunky chips, I’ve had in ages.
Leo and I spent the rest if the afternoon by the pool before dropping into RimPing for some goodies for dinner (there was some traditional Thai event going on at the mall) – bread, cheese, dips, Parma ham, the works and all so Thai!! Not!!
We ate dinner perched around the small kitchen table and my laptop as we settled in for a night of the new series of Sherlock – gripping stuff!!
We managed 2 episode before calling it a night.
The usual morning routine before meeting Ocean for a road trip in search of waterfalls. Things never quite go to plan sometimes…..between the fact it was Sunday and everyone seemed to be out and the fact it was dry season, we didn’t find a waterfall until our third try. Even then it was rather pathetic so we just sat in the cool of the rocks and chatted.
On to way home I dropped into Ocean’s place to stock up on ginger probiotic and chocolates.
Home to change and then out for dinner.
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