After the beaches of Phuket we headed north to the nature of Chang Mai. We stayed 30 minutes south of the airport in a villa in the middle of nowhere. It was peaceful and beautiful. The villa had two houses in the gated area with a pool in the middle and outside meditation area. It was beautiful!
The first day we went into town the driver dropped us at a great little noodle shop. After noodles for a buck a bowl, we walked the streets and found our way to the Night Market. They were just starting to set up the market and it was fun to walk around. The Cody’s were looking for a singing bowl and we found lots of used bookstores and vegetarian restaurants.
The next day we scheduled riding the elephants and see the long neck villages. We had a late start and didn’t get to the elephants early enough. So we bought our elephant tickets and went to see the long necks. The Tribe Village was depressing. It felt like the women were animals at a zoo. It seemed degrading, but we walked through and felt sad after. The elephant ride was crazy. We were on a gentle elephant with a crazy elephant trainer, called a mahoot. He got off the elephant and walked while I thought our elephant would run away. The elephant didn’t but I kept holding my breathe.
Matt really wanted to go fishing, so Margaret decided to join in. She figured it might be better than hanging out with Frank and I (while Frank was feeling sick). They had an amazing day. Our hotel owner lit off some wish balloons in our name as a celebration. Then we went to a local restaurant for New Years Eve.
The next day we walked to a local Temple on the side of the hill. It was very local but had a huge crowd and lots of amazing statues.
The last day with the Cody’s we went to the temple on the side of the mountain. It was gorgeous.
Matt talks me to trying Ziplining. I was terrified, but I think we all were. We went to the place and had a guide (Boston – he is the one wearing the red cape in some pictures) who thought it would be funny if he acted like he never guided before. It cut the tension and made the day a lot of fun. I still can’t believe we all survived.
The last day we wanted to do something so we weren’t just waiting to find our wonderful overnight bus. We decided to pack up and spend the day at the Zoo/Aquarium. The Aquarium was amazing. So were the other animals.