A Thai Patty's Day
Chiang Mai Travel Blog› entry 123 of 151 › view all entries
Bangkok proved to be drain on the wallet as I enjoyed lots of shopping on the streets. I figured I might as well fill the space I made in my bag after sending a package home from India. I liked that city, especially the public transport by river. It's full of temples and ugly white men with Asian girlfriends/wives. I needed to move on though, so I boarded a train bound for Chiang Mai. I was really impressed with their trains, but who wouldn't be after experiencing rail in India. We arrived early morning on St. Patrick's Day, so my first step after locating a place to crash was finding an Irish pub. Yes, they have one everywhere in the world, even Mongolia! It just so happened that the guesthouse we picked was a few doors away from the UN Irish pub.
That was about it for sight-seeing. The heat makes everything move in slow motion, so most of the time I move a little, then rest in the shade, then walk some more, and then rest. Anyway, after a nice cold shower, I made a beeline for the Irish pub to find out "what's the craic." Celebrating St. Patrick's Day is a must back home, so I had to throw on some green and join in the fun.
Although my homesick self wanted to stay, we decided to take in some of the local culture and headed to a Thai boxing match. We picked a good ringside table and I snapped many pictures of the competitors before the matches. I didn't see any blood flying like I imagined (well, as seen in the movies), but it was interesting. I was especially taken by the fact they had 12-year-olds up there fighting! Crazy. The main event was some Aussies vs. Thai fighters. I got progressively drunk through this entire spectacle thanks to two pints of Guinness and many more during the matches, by the time the cabaret show started with drag queens I was unstoppable with the camera and you would have had to tie me to my seat to get me to stay put.
Tonight I'm laying off the sauce and hitting up the night market where I hope not to buy anything. Then tomorrow I plan to be a proper tourist. We travel further north to the Golden Triangle (where Burma/Thailand/Laos meet) and then we'll check out the Long Neck tribes. Apparently they are Burmese but prefer to live in Thailand. They make all their money off tourists - the only tribe that charges money for a visit. This I must see, though, so tour booked and paid. Photos to follow.