March 8, 2013
I wake up with a headache, and since we’ve got a 3 1/2 bus ride from Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai planned, I break my lenten fast to wash down two Exedrins with my first sip of coffee in three weeks. It works! I am headache-free, but have the odd sensation of floating above and not being in the landscapes we pass through. In Chiang Rai we discover that our hotel is not within walking distance of the town, and have to take a taxi-truck to the hotel which is about 5 kilometers away. Ah, to be able to lie down again in a clean bed freshly made up with crisp white sheets.
March 9, 2013
I wake up with a fever and spend the day in bed while Christof goes off to explore the area with Ou, whom we met last night after escaping a group of tuk tuk drivers trying to overcharge us for the short ride to our hotel. Turning away from them with the words,
– Too expensive!
We rounded the bus station and discovered a rickety old songtaew. The driver, who was in the process of eating a simple meal of plain rice out of a small basket, gave us a friendly smile and offered to drive us to our hotel for half of what the others wanted, entertaining us along the way with stories about Life in Thailand.
Christof is enthusiastic when he gets back from the tour, saying I missed the best day he’s yet had here. He was finally able to get a feeling of what type of life the locals lead because Ou took him to the village he lives in with his wife and in-laws and showed him their pineapple fields and an amazing but wild estate set up for the public by an idiosyncratic and fascinating artist.