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Meditations around the world My 8-month Trip to Southeast Asia.

Feb 23-25: Reunions and Karaoke

THAILAND | Sunday, 25 February 2007 | Views [1075]

February 23-25, 2007

Leaving Chiang Khong, we took a three hour ride on a local bus to the northern Thailand city of Chiang Rai. I was hoping to see Ajahn Choon, the Thai english teacher I had befriended at the monastery three months previously. Not in the mood to shop for accommodation, we left the bus and got a ride directly to a place in our guidebook and got a room. The area was full of expat bars but not a far walk from a great night bazaar.

With a little help from a Thai girl on the street, I used a pay phone to call Ajahn Choon (Ajahn means teacher). She was teaching high school, but grabbed one of her student with a moped and drove over to see us. We arranged to meet later after classes were over.

We spent that night and the next afternoon and evening touring around the city and dining with Ajahn Choon. She even sang a few karaoke songs to us. We finished our visit with a long stroll around the night bazaar; a few snacks and beers by the food stalls.

The third day in Chiang Rai, we packed and headed the four hours to Chiang Mai on a much nicer than usual bus. We made it just in time to catch a bus onward to a town far in the northwest called Pai. Pai is reported to be an artsy little community with a quiet and chill vibe up in the mountains. The bus ride there was a little less comfortable than usual. The windows did not open and the bus kept overheating, so the driver could not turn on the air con. The bus ride was slow on the winding mountain roads and I was happy to make it into town before dark.

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