Sunday, June 29, 2014

Biking in Chiang Mai

After a week in Bangkok just prowling the streets, walking through temples, visiting the malls that SE Asians find aspirational and fascinating (and which we appreciated for the air conditioning) we hit the road for Chiang Mai in the northwest part of Thailand, close to the Burma border.  Which Mason will correct you and tell you is now Myanmar.  Noted.

Stayed here for a week in a fantastic little hotel called Rimping Village, in the little quaint town square not far from the historic center.  The place has bikes for guests to use so we took those out for a few days. I haven't ridden a bike since we live on the Charles River in Boston's Back Bay, so that would be 15 years ago.  But like horses, it comes back to you. It was a bit nerve wracking at first watching the kids attempt to stay on the left side (didn't realize that Asia drives on the left until we pulled out of the Bangkok airport--I've now cancelled the car we were going to rent in Bali.  Who needs that aggravation??)  Also no one cares much about pedestrians here, which is so different from San Miguel where people cross with impunity anywhere they care to.  No on ewill hit them and everyone stops.  Here it's every songthoew, tuk tuk, cab and scooter for himself.  I finally had to ride in front of Redding as I couldn't bear to watch him hot dogging it, zig zagging in his lane about 2 inches from parked cars and 2 inches from moving ones.  But what a great way to get around once you get used to it.

We covered a lot of terrain through the old walled city, driving along the old moat which surrounded the city and is now a square of smelly canals defining the space.

Mason and I got foot massages one morning while the others did some school work.  He was not fond of the stick which was pushed rather hard into each of his toe pressure points.  He's becoming a bit of an expert after five massages in 10 days!  

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