Published: June 11th 2012June 11th 2012
Well after my wonderful bus trip, i decided to spend two days in Chiang Mai before getting on a mini van to Pai. I spent the couple of days just hanging around visiting places that I had been too on my last trip out here. Followed by watching both the Poland match and the Dutch match in John's place. Which I am sure both Gordon and SJ will remember well. The roof terrace is still as lovely as ever, and I introduced the place to a couple of people that I met on the bus up. Both have been to Chiang Mai on several occasions and hadn't yet found this lovely retreat. Unfortunately he closes as soon as the first game of the night is over, so rather than trawl the streets for another bar I went home to bed after both games. Who would have thought Denmark winning... I was only intending to watch the first half, but couldn't leave until the end. There were alot of Dutch fans there, who were understandably upset. One of the waitresses high fiving me at the end of the match didn't help my neutrality much, but no one seemed to take any offence.
The journey up to Pai was under four hours, so a walk in the park really. The road does get a bit winding the last 30 miles or so, but the surface is still good. Compared to the roads in Laos it is a walk in the park. At least you are not hanging over stupidly insane drops, and for once the driver wasn't trying to emulate Jenson Button.
On arrival there was a man at the bus stop that was touting for a guest house down by the river. He quoted me a price and offered to take me there, and then told me it was only four hundred yards and gave me directions. So I said I would walk and look around. I headed to the guest house in question, and asked for a hut, and got it 25 baht a night cheaper, as there was no commission tagged onto the room price. And for and extra bargain, as I am staying for three nights, she even knocked another 20 baht off a night! So a hut by the river for 130 Baht a night, not bad.
The hut is basic, but does have a
double bed(with mossie net), warm shower, and a flush it yourself toilet. Also comes with a balcony and is located right on the river. Absolutely lovely spot, quiet and tranquil. Just before I came down here the sun was setting behind the mountains, crickets were singing and there were water birds making wonderful booming noises. At least I think they were birds. Oh and I have finally been hearing the frogs that actually sound like all the wooden ones that the ladies for Chiang Mai try to sell you in Bangkok. And as an extra bonus you get to walk across the the bridge of death!
Pai itself is a small village nestled amongst the mountains. Cooler than Chiang Mai, and easy to walk around. There is nothing much to do in the village itslef, other than sit around and chill out, which of course suits me fine. The treks look quite impressive, but I haven't found the inclination to book one, and probably won't. I think I will stay tomorrow and head back to Chiang Mai for a couple of days, before deciding what border to head for. So many choices.
For a change from the usual
Thai food, I had steak (Pai beef) and chips with a blackbean sauce last night. This came with a mushroom soup starter, salad and a free beer. All for the massive price of 160 Baht! I was so impressed, I may have another one tonight.
Despite not following England for a very long time, I have decided that it would be churlish of me not to go out and support them whilst I am away. I have found a bar, and am heading there after my steak. Lets hope that my supporting them doesn't have the usual negative effect. Hopefully I am too far away for my curse to work.
There are more photos below