Day 6. Sun 5/15
Breakfast at the market, motorbiked to Grand Canyon, dinner at the wrong market, trip planning at Stamps, Sunday night market
Just when the six of us think we’re past our jetlag, two of us pass out before 9pm (shoutout to Saffy and Josh). On the bright side, this means that by 9am the next morning we’re all awake and on our way out of the hostel. We checked out some muesli with fresh (<<Max’s favorite word) fruit at a nearby market for breakfast and then rented motorbikes. Don’t worry mom, I pondered whether a riding a moped in a foreign city driving on the opposite side of the road with apparently little to no traffic rules was a smart decision, and then I bought insurance and got the biggest pink helmet I could find to match my purple Filano. And it was 1000% worth it.
We haven’t seen a lot of the city and Old Town Chiang Mai, but what we saw today past the city limits today was pretty cool. I enjoyed the views a little more on the way back from our 45 minute commute to the Grand Canyon when I had gotten the hang of my wheels and built a little more confidence. I started off with a little mishap involving my front left mirror and a metal gate, but nothing like a loud CRAANNG to keep you on your toes 5 minutes in to your ride. Seriously though Mom, I’m fine.👌
Apparently there’s more than one Grand Canyon in the world. The first one I know of was carved by the Colorado River in Arizona, and the second one is here in Chiang Mai and was created as builders dug up dirt to build houses and rainwater accumulated. Now it’s a tourist attraction with a sweet spot to cliff jump and little floating bamboo rafts all around for jumpers and swimmers to sit on and rest. Instead of using it to relax, we decided we could all fit on one raft and it turned into a little impromptu team building exercise for ten minutes while all of us shifted and squirmed and yelled at each other to stop moving. Fun.
I finally built up the courage to trek around the canyon in my burning bare feet (red clay+hot sun=srsly ow) and hop in the water. But first, I was stopped by some other tourists who were very grateful when I agreed to take a picture with them before jumping off a rock 35 feet above the canyon. Is this what it’s like to be a celebrity?
We are lucky to be staying at Stamps, a hostel with an amazing employee (alias: Milk) who was born and raised in Chiang Mai and has been giving us great info on how we need to spend our time here. We sat with her for almost an hour today and talked through all of her recommendations. She sent us on a mission to order Kao Soi, a Thailand specialty, and let us know about her favorite street food, spicy glass noodle salad. When we said we hadn’t seen either she was a little surprised. Then we realized that the market we had visited twice today was about 1/10th the size of the one we were supposed to be going to. Face palm. We made plans to hit the Sunday night market instead later to get the full experience.
Mike described the Sunday night market best: “It’s just like the state fair except everything costs a quarter instead of $10.” We wandered for a few hours, tried some delicious food and desserts, shopped around for some clothing, and then tuk tuk’d (it’s a verb now) home. Day well spent.
I’m starting a food log at the end of my posts so I can remember all of the amazing dishes I’m trying without outlining them in detail every single day. I haven’t had anything I haven’t liked yet, although today’s Chicken Tom Yum soup was a little hotter and spicier than I was comfortable with. So far my favorite meal has been the pad thai we tried in Bangkok from the street vendor, and I think (100% certain) that the rest of the group would agree. #padthaiappreciationpost
- Fruit salad/muesli with banana, pineapple, papaya, watermelon, mango, advocado, dragon fruit and passion fruit. Topped with yoghurt and honey. (From the market across the street)
- Chicken Tom Yum (spicy!) and fruit smoothies at Jaidii
- Sunday night market
- Chicken pot stickers
- Fried banana
- Mango sticky rice
- Milk pork