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    Tropical Storm Tour: Thailand Part 15

    Thursday, June 18, 2015
    Chiang Mai, Thailand

    The bungalows at the Gardenhouse in Sukothai, Thailand.
    The bungalows at the Gardenhouse in Sukothai, Thailand.

    Only two days after I had arrived in Sukothai, it was already time to leave. I wanted to pay a visit to Chiang Mai for a few days before I attempt to attend a traditional Thai festival in Isaan province. So, I boarded a northbound bus around 1:00 pm. Luckily, the seat next to me was open for most of the trip, so I could have my backpack next to me and enjoy some legroom. During the last part of the journey, another guy sat there for about an hour, so I had to move the pack between my legs, which was really ultra-cramped. Of course, the guy had to nod off and man spread his right arm and leg all over me. Oh, and before he jumped on, I caught another young guy sitting across the aisle snapping a selfie with me in the background.

    After five hours, the bus dumped me off at the Arcade terminal a few miles outside of central Chiang Mai. After walking around and haggling with songthaew drivers for a little while, I finally boarded one with two 20-something backpackers from France. They were pretty nice as we engaged in the usual traveler small talk during the ride into town. I got dropped off first, at the main gate of the island, as the other two backpackers were going to Julie Guesthouse. I decided to try my luck at Grace Guesthouse a half mile north.

    The bungalows at the Gardenhouse in Sukothai, Thailand.
    The bungalows at the Gardenhouse in Sukothai, Thailand.

    After trudging through the back lanes for a while, my heavy backpack really started to make my back hurt. I was having trouble finding Grace on the same lane I recalled it being located on during my last trip to Chiang Mai in 2010. Right as it dawned on me that it may have closed, someone told me that it had changed names. So, back I headed south again to look for a room. Even though it was only 8:30 pm, the lobbies at some of the guesthouses were already closed, and the ones that were open were too expensive.

    As I hiked around with my heavy backpack for a couple of miles, I was drenched in sweat and my back was killing me–or maybe even giving birth to another me. So, I sat on the side of a lane to rest next to a restaurant, where one of the nice ladies who worked there tried to help me. So did a fellow traveler who was sitting in there. He told me where Julie Guesthouse was, but it turned out to have bunk bed dorm rooms only. The receptionist there told me to check their other location for a private room, but I could never find it.

    A fan room at Rose Guesthouse in Chiang Mai, Thailand.
    A fan room at Rose Guesthouse in Chiang Mai, Thailand.

    I ended up at Rose Guesthouse, where all they had was a fan room with a shared bathroom on another floor. I prefer a bathroom inside the bedroom, because it’s way easier to deal with my clothes and other stuff. I wash my shirt, underwear and socks in the shower every night, and it’s easier to have a place to hang them right after while I get dressed, which is usually much more difficult in a shared bathroom; I definitely don’t want to put my stuff on the floor. Luckily, Rose had a bunch of hooks inside the shower room door.

    Before I even took a shower, I ran a half mile over to May Kaidee’s vegetarian restaurant and arrived right as they were closing. Their web site said they were open until 10:00 pm, but they told me they close at 9:00 pm in Chiang Mai. They ended up feeding me some Yellow Curry and rice anyway, and even gave me a second helping for nothing extra. They thought it was funny that I ran over there. After that extremely long night, it felt good to take a shower and go straight to bed. My room was located right over the street at a busy intersection, so it was really loud. I got woke up briefly a couple of times in the middle of the night by horns blasting.

    Words and photos ©2015 Arcane Candy.

    One response to “Tropical Storm Tour: Thailand Part 15”

    1. Louise Balma says:

      Sounds like an adventure for sure, you should be able to sleep through the traffic with all the experience of the barking dog you lived through. I’ll have to read more of your postings, its like reading a book, I start to feel the experiences.

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