Just another day in Chiang Mai

Day VIII – March 26

I wake up at 7am sharp. Today was going to be sleep in day. Well damn it.

We went out for drinks last night and looked for a pool table, but ended up just barhopping until midnight when all bars closed; apparently Chiang Mai does ‘Sunday’.
This first place we were, named Freedom, is ran by an English bloke and looked like he build it with his own bare hands. It had a really nice vibe! It was just another one of those shacks that are so surreal to us who come from a land where rules and regulations decide how a building should look. But here you see them everywhere and I feel like I’m in a fairytale; this is anything-goes Asia.
We sat at the rooftop/balcony on the 1½th floor in and open sort of veranda, I had a very good long island iced tea, and we talked of brothers and sisters while a gecko quietly listened in under a starry sky.
A little later we walked by that same backpacker central we’d been the night before and it looked like I’d expected it to be now; mellow, a reggae band playing some live tunes, and a couple of hippies on the couch with their kids running around, playing in the dirt and whatever. The fullmoon craze of the other night had died down completely. There weren’t even any fire dancers.

I try snoozing for a while but with just a fan it’s too hot for that and my sticky body disgusts me.* And it does feel like a waist; trying to spend more time in bed while Asia is right there being my oyster.

Today we’re having an easy day. After breakfast –a pineapple pancake and a mangoshake- we walk around the quarter for a bit, check out some temples, yet after three hours we’re both templed out. It’s all beautiful, but has this touristy feel about it that takes away a lot of the magic.

We spend a little time online. Or so it feels. Yet when I log out I’m charged for one and a half hour and they’re not ripping me off… Time flies, ey.

Before we have dinner at the nightmarket again, we go by the park. A nice place where one can relax. But it’s more to be used as a gym. The one path going around is the well-used running course, and at 6pm sharp the music starts banging from the speakers, a body-pump instructor steps forward and leads the crowd that has gathered. Very amusing to watch!

At the market I score my first RaiBans, to replace the shades I broke the other day. First asking price: 380b, bargained for: 160b.

We finally find that pooltable, in the free-show-alley. One game and one beer Leo and off to bed we are. Tomorrow’s going to be an early morning.

* It’ll take little over two weeks for your body to adjust to the heat and for you to get used to that sweaty feeling.

Lesson learned: Look for the fans and then pick your table.

Have you been to Chiang Mai? Any tips on what I should do next time I’m there?

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