After scouring the many streets with the mid-day sun beating down on me, I finally found a motorbike shop to rent a scooter for four or so days. The beauty about the rental shop is that I didn't have to give away my life, my soul possession for my travels - my passport. I gladly gave them my 'operators license' after explaining to the Thai lady that 'operators license' is the same as a drivers license (but I don't need to have a drivers license anyway). I have come to the conclusion that for my Christmas present to myself I will be taking the Mae Hong Son loop through Northern Thailand.
With just over 600km starting from the bustling, yet highly pleasant city of Chiang Mai, circling clockwise to Mae sariang, Mae Hong Son, and finally passing through the 'hipster' town of Pai before returning to Chiang Mai. Of course the route can also be done in the counter-clock wise direction if one chooses to do so, but I have been informed that it's best to go to Mae Sariang to get a feel for the road before descending on the 1,864 curves that the whole route claims to possess. Sounds exciting right?! After three times on a scooter here in Thailand, I feel I can conquer this.
Christmas in Thailand was definitely different. Considering that the majority of the population are Buddhists they don't celebrate Christmas, so for them, Tuesday was just another day. I seen the occasional 'Merry Christmas, Happy New Year' banners hung up over the Thai restaurants catering to westerners. The Deejai hostel that I am staying at did a fine job at the Christmas party here.
They, the hostel owners, hired a local Chiang Mai jazz band to play live music for us, while the Thai dinner consisted of spring rolls, curry rice chicken, mixed veggies and to top it all off, turkey was served for dinner. What a contrast of flavours that was, and for dessert I had cake... then roasted worms.
Some photos of my Christmas Day
|+33 degree temperature.|
|I think I see some snow... wait, no|
|The hostel Christmas Tree|