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March 1, 2010 - ChiangMai, Thailand

Written by GingerBlossom Published in
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To get from Delhi to ChiangMai involved 30 hours with no sleep, but then no one forced me to watch the in-flight movies from 1 a.m. until landing in Bangkok, plus I could have taken an earlier flight up north, but no, I had to wait for the later, cheaper flight. Both the airport in Bangkok and ChiangMai are loaded with gorgeous orchids, welcome to Thailand.

I'm staying, as always, at the Galare Guest House. It's along the river Ping, is spotless, and has a nice garden and great location at the end of a quiet soi, or lane. I surprised a big lizard feeding from the garbage cans at the Galare - Leapin' Lizards! how he jumped. I hear him at night too, singing BOOM BOOM BOOM.

Sunday Night Market had an added dimension last night, it was also the Full Moon Buddhist festival of Macha Bucha. I went to one of the wats, or temples, to look, and had a bundle of joss sticks, candle and flowers thrust at me, and found myself as a drop of water in the stream of humanity that was circunambulating clockwise around the wat. Alongside the wat was a sign put up by the monks to Help The Street Dogs, and there were three grinning, tail-wagging canines flanking the sign. I went back later to give a donation, also hoping to get a picture, but the dogs were gone. I've also been taking photos of the Spirit Houses, from derelict to mansion. I hope to get a slide show of them up and running at some time. On a back road around Hang Dong there's a Spirit House graveyard, there must be thousands of them. The house graveyards are by an old tree, water, big rocks, etc.

While driving around with Darryl and one of his boys from the warehouse, I offered them some gum, and learned that the Thai word for chewing gum translates to: Foreigner's betel nut.