Chiang Mai and the monk
Chiang Mai Travel Blog› entry 2 of 10 › view all entries
Have spent the last two days exploring Chiang Mai and it's 300 temples (all very ornate buildings with buddhas of varying sizes!). It's pretty hot and sticky and any serious forays are best attempted in between downpours or you stay wet for a really, really, long time.
Most 'interesting' experience yet was at the largest Wat (temple) called Wat Phra Singh... again, it's a lovely ornate temple with a very large sitting buddha, but it was the monk who made the difference. I was sitting in the 'garden of tranquility' when he approached me to ask if he could practice his English with me in exchange for some Thai words...sounded ok to me, and it was going well for about thirty minutes until he asked if I would like to 'work in the bed' with him. Being totally clueless he went on to offer that if I liked he would like to then marry me, and would even convert to 'protestantism' despite the fact that it would make him very sad to do so because he 'loves buddha'. Not being entirely confident of the culturally appropriate way of letting him down (!) I said, no, thanks, and started to leave... I was a bit concerned he was going to try and follow me to convince me but as I left the Garden of Tranquility on the Path of Forgiveness I looked back to see him crying profusely in the garden!
Have stayed well clear of monks since then, doing river cruises and checking out markets etc etc. Everything is so cheap here- picked up a massive bowl of Pad Thai for dinner last night that cost about $1.75 and could have fed three people- it was delicious too.
Heading off on the elephant/rafting/jungle/trekking adventure tomorrow for three days. I'll try and add photos when I get back... cheers :-)