Chiang Mai

Is it Chiang or Chaing??

Had a horrible bus journey trying to get here – it was the worst bus Ive been on so far, but I managed to get some sleep with the help of some sedatives. To top it off, the asshole of a bus driver took us to a guesthouse where we were met by touts, instead of the bus station. Needless to say, I left sharpish(after the free coffee of course). (this was yesterday morning)

I arrived pretty early at Julie’s guesthouse, where I had made a reservation by phone from Bangkok. There were at least a dozen people waiting for rooms by 8am when the reception opened.

My main intention for coming to Chiang Mia was to do some trekking. But now that I am here I am having serious doubts about it. Most of the treks involve visits to various hill tribe villages and elephant rides – both things I strongly oppose for a number of reasons. I knew that it would be difficult before I came, that finding a suitable outfit would be difficult, but now I am here it is proving to be quite impossible. Fortunately, this city is more like a town and it is quite beautiful in comparison to the other urban areas I have been to so far. No hassles. Nice places to eat. And a hell of a lot cooler than down south.

The only problem with deciding to not trek is that, the people I have met here have either left, or joined a trekking group. People dont seem to linger in this place too long. But its not really a problem, for the last three weeks I have had company, so its quite nice to be totally cut loose.

I am sitting in an internet cafe right now, it is raining a little bit outside. I just had breakfast, so I came here in order to research my next move. I am thinking of heading to Laos pretty soon, tomorrow or perhaps the day after. I also need to think about how I am going to get to Singapore. The number of days left before Papua New Guinea are closing in on me.

I have been eating quite well over the last week – no ‘green apple squirts'(Im sure you can work out what I mean. Though in saying that I am down to the last notch on my belt and its feeling a little loose. I wasnt overweight in the slightest before I came, so I guess humping my backpack all over the place is taking its toll – good prep for Papua New Guinea I think. My farmers tan(tanned neck, face and forearms) is coming on quite well and my hair is growing slightly wild. Dont worry Dad, I am shaving with the razor you bought me, though I dont think I would have bothered had you got me it. Also, the watch is proving useful too, the compass has helped alot whenever I have got a little lost, especially in Bangkok.

Well thats about it really, I am going to try and see where I can go now before my time runs out on this computer.

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