Day 16: Would You Like Some Pai?

Day sixteen, and, to be honest, it’ll probably read in quite a boring manner, due to the lack of anything of interest actually happening. The day started like most others, Sarah and I, rose from bed, did the usual bathroom routine, had breakfast, and got ready for the day ahead. The first task we had to do, was collect our photos, that were taken the day before, ready for the visa we would need for Vietnam.

We arrived at the photo store at ten a.m., as arranged the previous night, where we were presented with six passport sized photos each. The photos were far from Hollywood headshots, but, were good enough to serve their purpose. After collecting the pics, we went to the British consulate (which was situated forty metres down the road from our resort). We headed there because we were informed that we would be able to purchase a visa for Vietnam… turns out we couldn’t. The lady kindly educated us by saying, it would take several days for them to send our passports to Bangkok, if we wanted to do it that way, as, it was only in Bangkok, that we could get the visa sorted. Not wanting to part with our passports, we opted to sort out our visas in the future, when we would arrive in Laos (as, rumour has it, there are places you can do it there, if not, we are screwed).

With the disappointment of not achieving our main goal of the day, we returned to the resort. It was here that we were to be picked up by our lady chauffeur (that took us to the resort on our first day) at midday. The plan, was to visit tiger kingdom, but after hearing mixed reviews of the tigers welfare, we chose otherwise. Sarah and I, then thought about going to see a snake, or crocodile show, but thought that might be boring. We ended up meeting with Danny, and, together, we agreed to explore a bit of Chiang Mai, as Sarah, was eager to see some more bloody temples.

As planned, our chauffeur picked us up on time, and after telling her the plan had changed, with a disappointed smile, she agreed to drop us off at the first temple, from there, we were able to walk to the other ones. When we arrived, it was the same as every other temple, golden Buddha, incense sticks, religious paintings, I won’t bore you with the full details. After exiting the temple, and putting our flip flops back on, we headed to another pharmacy (as Sarah had lost the other tablets). This time, it was easier to get the tablets we wanted, so, the whole process took around five minutes. Straight from there, we bought some drinks at the nearest seven eleven, then, walked to our next temple.

We, somehow, managed to get lost, but, it didn’t matter, because, by us getting lost, we ended up passing a tourist place, that Danny used previously. Here, Sarah and I, booked our minibus to Pai, at a cheap price of one hundred and fifty baht (three pounds, bargain). After that lucky find, we stopped in a coffee shop to grab a drink, then, made our way to the next temple, asking locals the whole way, to ensure we were heading in the right direction. Upon arrival, we took our flip flops off again (except for Danny, with his leg still being in a cast, he chose to wait outside each time) however, before we entered, a man sat outside, ran over, and asked if he could sign Danny’s cast. Danny obliged, and he wrote a kind message in Thai, it translated to wish him well and good health. We wandered around the temple and the grounds for a bit, then left, to only walk fifty feet down the road to our last temple of the day.

If I am completely honest, I did like this last temple, because of it’s sheer dimensions. Inside, it was very spacious, with the floor being covered in a crimson carpet, rising from the ground, large marble pillars, all leading towards a golden colossal statue of their deity, that was situated centrally, at the end of the room. Whilst we were there, Sarah was told off, for having a slight bit of her back on show (the tart), however, regardless of your sex, there was a rule that you couldn’t, at anytime, point your toes towards Buddha. Which is a stupid rule, as, how do Buddhist walk up to him to pray?

When we were done, all three of us caught a truck back to Eco. In our room, I made a Skype call to my mum, while Sarah went to the pool. By this time, it was around six p.m. so, we decided to go for food, we hailed a red truck, again, and headed for the night bazaar. We went to our favourite spot, which sold cheap meals, had our food, then, began looking around the stalls for possible Christmas gifts. There was plenty of items to chose from, that friends and family may like back home, except, the main concern, would be the postal charge. With prices being based on size and weight, it made it all the more difficult to decide if it was worth sending items home, as the postage would cost more than the gifts themselves. So, if you do receive any presents this Christmas, think yourselves lucky.

At the end of the night, we tried to find the same driver, who took us to the night bazaar. He was nowhere to be found. So, we hopped in a different truck, and, had to pay a slightly higher price, to be taken back to Eco. Ten minutes later, we were back, and, like usual, returned to our room, where we attempted to watch some tv shows on our tablet device, unfortunately, that didn’t work. Due to having no visual entertainment, to help us unwind, we had no choice, but to turn out the lights, and attempt to conclude another night of living the dream.

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