Katja and Arne's travel stories

15.05.15 Happy first day of the Pillar Festival

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It’s two months since we arrived in Thailand. I remember I thought time moved fast back home, but trust me it’s no different in South East Asia. 

There’s no shortage in festivals here in Thailand. From today it’s Pillar day that are celebrated all over the country, but not at the same dates. It’s a festival to celebrate the “birth” of the city and the pillar that are a symbol of this. If the pillar should fall, the city will fall. The pillar for Chiang Mai is located at one of the central temples, and it’s a lot of people going there to pay tribute and to pray. This festival will go on for three days.
The temple of the pillar of Chiang Mai

The temple of the pillar of Chiang Mai

We start the day by going down to the terrace and so our gym thing. We sweat it out and do a few modification on a couple of these exercises to shake things up a bit. Or rather Katja changed them. I’m just bragging when I say we. We do them because Katja is my number one motivator and inspiration when it comes to training.
Then we have a nice breakfast with the last of the muesli and milk. We bought a watermelon on the day of the last hike and we eat the last of that as well.
Check out from Belle Villa is easier than anticipated and as a bonus they drive Katja and the baggage to the door of the next hotel. That’s not the standard for the morning city shuttle, but we happily agree and I set off on the motorbike. Riding alone on such a little cc is easier than being two. I make good speed and arrive at the hotel right after Katja. It’s an enormous time saver on the red lights driving a motorbike, so I make up for lost time there.
At the hotel they check us in, but the room is not ready yet. We decide on keeping the bike another day so we can deliver laundry, find a hairdresser for Katja and one for me. Why we need two? My haircut is simple and is not worth the same as Katja’s. I can get mine in a backstreet somewhere, but she is more prone to require an educated hairdresser and actual hair salons. Go figure. Katja found just what she was looking for at MAYA shopping mall, so then everybody is happy.



We finish up at the mall with a Starbucks coffee. Sitting down and sipping coffee is a blessing. We decide to get burger for lunch and Google up the best place in town. We get on the bike and ride to Rock Me burger bar.
The burgers are phenomenal, but as everywhere else here in Asia there’s improvement needed on the service.
We ride back to the hotel and get our room. It’s a bit dark as the only windows leads out onto the walkway. The bed is firm and nice and it’s clean with both AC and a fan.
After a little break to cool down we get dressed and enter into the streets of Chiang Mai. We go towards the vegetarian restaurant Blue Diamond and hope to see a bar on the way where we can grab a beer. Ever noticed that when you don’t need something it’s at every street corner, but the minute you want or need it is nowhere to be seen? We walked for fifteen minutes before reaching the restaurant without finding a pit stop on the way. They serve beer at the restaurant anyway so I get a little taste there. As the temperature is still about thirty degrees a beer don’t last all that long before it gets hot. It’s a good idea to learn to drink it the way the Thais drink it, with ice. It waters out the beer a little, but it’s not a big problem especially since the beer usually holds six percent alcohol.
I’m basically full from the double decker burger earlier on and settle for a banana pancake. Katja gets a spicy, as always, local Thai dish. I think it’s more chili’s in the dish than anything else.
We look for Norwegian flags to take on the Sunday hike as it’s Norway’s constitution day the seventeenth of May. So far no luck, but we do have a lead and will pursue it tomorrow.
We walk back to the hotel instead of taking a taxi. It’s finally getting down to a reasonably decent temperature outside. Inside the old town of Chiang Mai there’s a temple on every street corner. You would think it was only temples here at one time. The walls around the city was built to keep the Burmese out as they constantly tried to sack the city.
It’s still hot enough to warrant a shower when we get back to the room. The decent temperature I mentioned is in the high twenties and more than enough to make me break sweat even though we’re just strolling slowly along. The room at least have a shower that works. A clear upgrade from our recent departed resort.

I didn’t want to be an actress. I wanted to be a dentist, but you never know what life will bring you.

– Sofia Vergara

Author: arnber

Humongen! The big guy! The man, the myth, the legend! And then theres' me. The nice guy in the house. The man without cooking skills, but with five stars on the Playstation. Boss at work, relaxed at home. What you see is what you get. Life is good. I choose it to be.

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