Thailand December 2016/ January 2017 Part 5 - Maesa Elephant Camp & Long Neck Hilltribe
Balkans Road Trip 2018 Part 1- Zagreb & Jasenovac Memorial Site

Thailand December 2016/ January 2017 Part 6 - Fishing for Mekong Catfish & Closing Thoughts

See Part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4 and part 5.

The first week we spent in Chiang Mai were the most structured, and where we completed most of our pre booked tours. The second week we spent in Chiang Mai were completely unstructured. We had the time to explore, to taste the most amazing food, and for Kevin to find opportunities to play table tennis. We were hampered somewhat by our limited Thai. But everywhere we went we found people to be amazingly kind, and friendly.

 We did, unexpectedly, have the chance to experience Thailand hospitals. Kevin needed to visit the emergency room. We were most fortunate that our hotel was opposite a hospital. We walked to the ER, and were admitted and seen to very promptly. Kevin received some drugs intravenously, was advised to be admitted overnight (which we politely declined.) And we were given a prescription for a number of drugs which was filled at the hospital. When we came to be discharged and pay our bill we were ASTONISHED to find that the total bill came to $26!

After Kevin started to recover and feel better, Kevin decided that he wanted to go fishing. He found the Bo Sang Fishing Lake which is a private lake where for a set price you can go fishing with a guide. We selected the half day program. The price included transport to and from our hotel. Our guide Ep, helped us set up - he put bait on the lines, and set everything up. Our quarry - the noble Mekong Catfish!

Here's Kevin battling the fish...


Caught! What a catch! After a quick photo, all fish were released back into their lake.


The fish were very strong and feisty! I am so glad we only had booked half a day. Towards the end of it all, my arms were hurting!

Here's a photo of one that I caught after quite an amazing battle...


 We really liked Chiang Mai, and how easy it was to get around. The markets are quite amazing - great subject matter for photographs!


Here is Kevin posing before the Table Tennis Club he found (and later played at.)


Here are some people having a fish spa at the Night Market...


 The most popular mode of transport seemed to be motorcycles. We were amazed to see the number of passengers and loads that intrepid, adventurous drivers had!


We would amble down streets just for the fun of it, and find the most interesting pictures.


We even visited a cat cafe, called "Catmosphere"!


Here's a typical street scene...


And another...


We played around at the Art In Paradise 3D museum...


Here's Kevin... (Will he jump?)


This photo was taken on the last evening we had. We had found this amazing mom and pop restaurant. We kept returning night after night. We had the most delicious chicken noodle broth, 50 baht ($1.43) for a bowl. We could not get enough of it.


Closing thoughts: This was an amazing trip. I would love to return. I could quite easily see spending a couple of months in this area. I had read about how amazing the street food is. And it is! When I first arrived I was super cautious, but there was no need to be. All the food is fresh and delicious. The worst part of this trip is getting there. The flights are long, and there is no way one can get comfortable. But it is worth it.

Can't wait to return!