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Running away from Home

Through the hedge to Malee's bungalows

THAILAND | Monday, 1 February 2010 | Views [384]

A bungalow at Malee's

A bungalow at Malee's

I did enjoy my walk into Chiang Dao proper this morning. I went early enough so that it was still cool and late enough for the dogs to be settled down. They get so crazy when someone is out walking in the morning. A couple of pooches approached me, but luckily the Chiang Dao Nest had given me an appropriate weapon in the form of a room key attached to a small plank about the length of my forearm. I was prepared to brandish it at any canine that got too close. Chiang Dao is just large enough to have a bus station and a 7/11, but only one, so I didn’t have much to explore, and after having a yogurt and a pastry from this lone 7/11, I was ready to go back toward the mountain. The same motorcycle cab was waiting for a fare in the same place as yesterday. I paid another 60 THB for a ride and I got back just in time to check out of my bungalow. I was only able to get one night at Chiang Dao Nest, but I did not mind leaving. The nightly rates were too steep for me and I don’t know if I am being sensitive, but from the time I got there I felt as though I was not the kind of clientele that they wanted. So, I packed up and went through the hedge to Malee’s Nature Lover’s Bungalows.

I liked the atmosphere at Malee’s better. It really does feel as though she is opening her home to travelers (even backpackers). Her brother works along side her and he gave me advice on my afternoon hike. I showed him what I wanted to do on the trail map and he shook his head and told me that it was too much for one day. Normally I would be inspired to march off and do the whole thing just because he told me that it was “too much”, but today, I listened, and I am glad that I did. Doing the short nature trail and going to the cave was enough for one afternoon. Especially after the hike into town this morning.

The backpacker camaraderie that I had experienced at Greenleaf was not to be had that night. I sat alone at dinner with my chicken green curry and I leafed through a National Geographic that I had missed. A couple from Holland had ridden in on bicycles and were discussing their next day’s travel to the north. Malee had recommended that they go to Thaton and take a boat over to Chiang Rai. It sounded more interesting than going by bus and I chatted with them for a few minutes. Another man came over to join in the conversation because he was headed north. This fellow was asked to sit while I was given dismissive gestures, but I was ready to turn in for the evening anyway so that I could get up early and hike into town for the Tuesday Morning Market.

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