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San Kampaeng Hot Springs

THAILAND | Friday, 14 November 2014 | Views [457]

Bought a basket of eggs to boil in the hot springs!

Bought a basket of eggs to boil in the hot springs!

Today after class, our teacher Dot arranged for a group of us to travel outside of the city to the San Kampaeng hot springs. We were told it's a fifty-minute drive from the city, but a thirty-minute return trip due to less traffic later in the day. Aaron and I were pretty excited to have a respite from the city to relax from all the activity of the last couple of weeks. A drive through the countryside gave us cooler temperatures, more rural roads, rice fields, and starry skies on our return home!!

Before going to soak in the springs, we went to see the geysers and meandering hot water streams that had been built into a relaxing park-like area where you could hang out in the shade, eat lunch, and dangle your feet in the warm water.  Vendors sold little wicker baskets, containing 3 eggs and a little tiny Baggie of soy sauce. At the source point of the springs near the geysers, there was volcanically hot water being piped into the start of this meandering stream system. In this area were hooks where you can hang your egg basket and cook your eggs to whatever level of soft- or hard-boiled you prefer.  We apparently didn't leave our eggs in long enough, since they were pretty gooey when we tried to crack them open.  Aaron ate them anyway, but I found their rawness pretty unpalatable and decided the experience of cooking them this way was sufficient.  

The hot springs grounds comprise a relatively large area including bungalow cabins that you can rent overnight that have private tubs inside.We opted for swimming in the main hot springs pool for 50 Baht apiece (about $1.50). There was a very hot area of the pool where the hot springs water was being piped into the pool, and over that was a "waterfall" of cooler water that you could let fall on you. I thought this would be relaxing and kind of like a massage, but I found it to be just very splashy into my face and so basically swam around letting the heat and chaos of the city wash off of me. And sneaking up behind Aaron pretending to be a shark. Our group got out of the pools just in time as a large European group arrived and proceeded to be loud and obnoxious. We were grateful that we had had some more peaceful time to ourselves for a while.

By this time, most of the little snack stands were closed, and we still had an hour before we were to be transported back to Chiang Mai, so we all found one little place that had some chicken on a grill out front and some tables inside. Our group of about eight went in and did our best to order a couple cups of tea, some beer, and chicken. The proprietors spoke almost no English, and my Thai seemed to not be getting the ideas across too well, but we all eventually ended up with a little to eat or drink. There was a lot of laughter and misunderstanding. And pantomiming. The proprietors were really good sports, and I had a lot of fun trying to communicate and joke with them. 

Tomorrow is our last day of regular class. We have our final massage exam, which I hope I can complete comfortably as I seem to have strained a muscle in my lower back during the dry run today. Geez, I just can't seem to stop hurting myself!! Saturday, Aaron and I have a four-hourr private tutorial with our teacher, Yan, in which we will cover a small taste of his vast knowledge in therapeutic and OsteoThai techniques. He has asked us to specify what we would like him to cover, and to "be precise."  I can't imagine how I will decide how best to take advantage of this opportunity to learn from such a master. 

Tags: san kampaeng hot springs

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